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Daywind Music Group Celebrates 73 Absolutely Gospel Music Award Nominations

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (NASHVILLE, TN) – Artists and songwriters who call Daywind Music Group (DMG) home were honored with 73 nominations for the 21st Annual Absolutely Gospel Music Awards. Fans are able to vote for their favorites in several categories beginning March 1, 2022. 

The reigning Male Vocalist of the Year, Joseph Habedank, landed the most nominations among artists this year with 12 nominations. Some of Habedank’s key nominations include Song of the Year (for “Religion Isn’t Working”), Album of the Year (for Change Is Coming), Male Vocalist of the Year, Fan Favorite Artist of the Year, and Songwriter of the Year (Artist). 

Jim & Melissa Brady followed close behind with nine nominations including mentions in Song of the Year (for “You Gotta Have a Song”) and Album of the Year (for Ever Faithful). 

New Day Records artist, the LeFevre Quartet nabbed seven nominations including nominations for Song of the Year (for “Practice What You’re Preaching”), Album of the Year (for My Jesus), and Fan Favorite Artist of the Year. 

Family group, the Nelons, also earned seven nominations for their work in 2021, including Song of the Year (for “Grace Ain’t Fair”), Mixed Group of the Year, and Fan Favorite Artist of the Year. 

Karen Peck & New River nabbed seven nominations including key nominations for Song of the Year (for “Messiah Overcame”), Country/Roots Single of the Year (for “The Book”), and Fan Favorite Artist of the Year. 
 

The Sound nabbed four nominations including a nomination for their #1 single in the Song of the Year, Progressive Single of the Year, and Music Video of the Year categories (for “First Church of Mercy”). Lead singer, Levi Mills, also earned a nomination for Male Vocalist of the Year. 
 

Tribute Quartet also received four nominations including Song of the Year and Traditional Single of the Year (for “I Call It Home”), Special Event Project of the Year (for Once Again), and Male Group of the Year. 

The ladies of High Road landed three nominations including Female Group of the Year, Music Video of the Year (for “The Day I Got Saved”) and group leader, Sarah Davison nabbed a nomination for Songwriter of the Year (Artist). 

Daywind Records artist, Southbound, also received three nominations for Breakthrough Artist of the Year, Progressive Single of the Year (for “Address Change Notification”), and Progressive Recording of the Year (for Southbound). 

Adam Crabb received a nomination for Country/Roots Single of the Year (for “Higher”). 

Father-Son duo, Wilburn & Wilburn, nabbed a nomination for Country/Roots Single of the Year (for “Raised On Red”).


Daywind Music Publishing Songwriters Jason Cox, Lee Black, Wayne Haun, Joseph Habedank, Aaron Wilburn, Dianne Wilkinson, Jim Brady, Tony Wood, and Mike Harland were honored with 35 nominations for their songwriting works in 2021. 
 

Billy Blue Records artists were also recognized in this year’s Absolutely Gospel Awards nominees including Darin & Brooke Aldridge and Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver


Three Daywind Music Group artists and songwriters received posthumous nominations this year after their unexpected deaths. Aaron Wilburn was nominated for Song of the Year and Progressive Single of the Year as the songwriter for the #1 single “First Church of Mercy” as well as a Songwriter of the Year (Artist) mention. Jeff Stice landed in Musician of the Year and Special Event Project of the Year (for his Dottie Rambo tribute Sheltered In the Arms of God). Dianne Wilkinson earned a nomination in the Songwriter of the Year (Professional) category.
 

This year’s awards program will return with a live program. Details on the show will be announced at a later date.


Daywind Music Group nominees for the 2021 Absolutely Gospel Music Awards are listed below:

SONG OF THE YEAR

“A Good Day Coming On” – Kingdom Heirs & 3 Heath Brothers (L.Black, M.Harland)

“First Church of Mercy” – The Sound (L.Black, A.Wilburn)

“Grace Ain’t Fair” – The Nelons (J.Clark, W.Haun, J.Lindsey)

“He Walked Out” – Triumphant Quartet (J.Cox, S.Inman, K.T.West)

“I Call It Home” – Tribute Quartet (S.Parsons)

“Messiah Overcame” – Karen Peck & New River (A.Homer)

“My King Is Known By Love” – Crabb Family (J.Bumgardner, J.Cox, K.T.West)

“Practice What You’re Preaching” – LeFevre Quartet (L.Black, S.Inman)

“Religion Isn’t Working” – Joseph Habedank (J.Habedank, M.Farren, J.Reeves, N.Romes, T.Wood)

“The God I Know” – The Erwins (J.Cox, K.T.West)

“You Gotta Have a Song” – Jim & Melissa Brady (J.Brady)

ALBUM OF THE YEAR

Change Is Coming – Joseph Habedank (W.Haun, J.Habedank, L.Habedank)

Ever Faithful – Jim & Melissa Brady (J.Brady, J.Webb)

My Jesus – LeFevre Quartet (W.Haun)

BREAKTHROUGH ARTIST

Southbound

MALE VOCALIST

Jim Brady (of Jim & Melissa Brady)

Joseph Habedank

Levi Mills (of The Sound)

FEMALE VOCALIST

Melissa Brady (of Jim & Melissa Brady)

Autumn Nelon Clark (of The Nelons)

Karen Peck Gooch (of Karen Peck & New River)

Amber Nelon Kistler (of The Nelons)

MALE GROUP

LeFevre Quartet

Tribute Quartet

FEMALE GROUP

High Road

MIXED GROUP

Jim & Melissa Brady

Karen Peck & New River

The Nelons

SONGWRITER (ARTIST)

Lee Black (of Legacy Five)

Sarah Davison (of High Road)

Joseph Habedank

Aaron Wilburn 

SONGWRITER (PROFESSIONAL) 

Jason Cox

Sue C. Smith

Dianne Wilkinson

PRODUCER

Jim Brady (of Jim & Melissa Brady)

MUSICIAN

Stone Carter (of The Nelons)

Bryan Elliott (of LeFevre Quartet)

Matthew Gooch (of Karen Peck & New River)

Jeff Stice

TRADITIONAL SINGLE

“A Good Day Coming On” – Kingdom Heirs & 3 Heath Brothers (L.Black, M.Harland)

“Given, Buried, Risen” – Legacy Five (C.Duren, L.Black)

“I Call It Home” – Tribute Quartet (S.Parsons)

“The 99” – LeFevre Quartet (M.Funderburk, C.DeGazio)

“The God I Know” – The Erwins (J.Cox, K.T.West)

TRADITIONAL RECORDING

30th Anniversary – Paid In Full (W.Haun)

Keeping On – Ernie Haase & Signature Sound (W.Haun, K.Crunk)

PROGRESSIVE SINGLE

“Address Change Notification” – Southbound (J.M.Wilson)

“First Church of Mercy” – The Sound (L.Black, A.Wilburn)

“Grace Ain’t Fair” – The Nelons (J.Clark, W.Haun, J.Lindsey)

“He Walked Out” – Triumphant Quartet (J.Cox, S.Inman, K.T.West)

“Messiah Overcame” – Karen Peck & New River (A.Homer)

“Religion Isn’t Working” – Joseph Habedank (J.Habedank, M.Farren, J.Reeves, N.Romes, T.Wood)

“Thunder” – Jim & Melissa Brady (J.Brady, M.Farren, T.Wood)

PROGRESSIVE RECORDING

Change Is Coming – Joseph Habedank (W.Haun, J.Habedank, L.Habedank)

Ever Faithful – Jim & Melissa Brady (J.Brady, J.Webb)

Southbound – Southbound (C.Brown)

COUNTRY/ROOTS SINGLE

“God Walks In” – Freemans (R.Rambo-McGuire, D.McGuire, S.C.Smith)

“Higher” – Adam Crabb (J.Cox, D.Doss, K.T.West)

“Raised On Red” – Wilburn & Wilburn (L.Black, J.Cox, J.Habedank)

“The Book” – Karen Peck & New River (K.P.Gooch, W.Haun, K.T.West)

COUNTRY/ROOTS RECORDING

Roundtable – Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver (D.Lawson)

SPECIAL EVENT PROJECT

Once Again – Tribute Quartet

Sheltered In the Arms of God: A Piano Tribute to the Songs of Dottie Rambo – Jeff Stice

Softly & Tenderly – Kim Hopper

MUSIC VIDEO

“First Church of Mercy” – The Sound

“Practice What You’re Preaching” – LeFevre Quartet

“The Day I Got Saved” – High Road

COUNTRY GOSPEL ARTIST

Darin & Brooke Aldridge

High Road

FAN FAVORITE ARTIST OF THE YEAR

Joseph Habedank

Jim & Melissa Brady

Karen Peck & New River

LeFevre Quartet

The Nelons

Daywind Music Group is home to an award-winning roster of artists and songwriters including Adam Crabb, Barry Weeks, Belinda Smith, Blackwood Brothers, Brian Free & Assurance, Clint Brown, Crabb Family, Devin McGlamery, Dianne Wilkinson, Greater Vision, High Road, Jacob Mills, Janice Crow, Jason Cox, Jim & Melissa Brady, Jody Braselton, John Darin Rowsey, Joseph Habedank, Karen Peck & New River, Karen Peck Gooch, Lee Black, LeFevre Quartet, Levi Mills, Marty Funderburk, Michael Booth, Mike Harland, Natalie Cromwell, Nathan Woodard, Nelons, Riley Harrison Clark, Rob Mills, Seth Elby, The Sound, Southbound, Sue C. Smith, Tim Lovelace, Tim Menzies, Tribute Quartet, Wayne Haun, and Wilburn & Wilburn. Daywind is distributed to retail through New Day Christian Distributors and the Orchard, covering all major physical, digital, and streaming outlets.

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Absolutely Gospel Music
Formed over 19 years ago by Deon & Susan Unthank originally as SoGospelNews.com, the site was birthed from an email discussion group by the same name. The SoGospelNews email discussion list was created by the Unthanks after the Singing News shut down its extremely popular discussion list. SoGospelNews started as a simple webpage listing artists, fans, individuals, etc. that were avid supporters of the newly formed SoGospelNews talk list. The site eventually took on printing news for Southern Gospel artists, and eventually took on reviewing the latest recordings from both signed and independent artists within the small genre. SoGospelNews became the most viewed Southern Gospel website on the Internet with over 4,000,000 hits per month.

The Unthank family are now involved in the site, as well as the addition of over two dozen staff writers. The website is based out of Murfreesboro, Tennessee. In April 2010, SoGospelNews changed its name to AbsolutelyGospel.com. The name change allows them to cover news items of not only Southern Gospel, but also Country Gospel, Inspirational, and Black Gospel.

On January 5, 2011, Susan Unthank passed away, leaving the website in control of Deon, their son, Chris, and their daughter Amy.