They will be Celebrating the Music that Defined a Generation
By Michael Ireland, Chief Correspondent for the ASSIST News Service (www.assistnews.net)
NASHVILLE, TN (ANS – October 22, 2017) – Artists who helped shape contemporary Christian music will look back on the songs that were the soundtrack for the Jesus Movement, and introduce fresh music for the next generation of believers in an event this week.
CCM Reunion, a gathering of some of the most influential pioneers of the genre that would eventually become known as Contemporary Christian music (CCM), is thrilled to announce their inaugural concert.
Award winning artists, including Evie Tornquist Karlsson, The Archers, Cheri Keaggy, and Farrell & Farrell, will join with music director Tim Akers and his band to celebrate the artists, musicians, fans, and songs of CCM on Friday, October 27, 2017, at the Williamson County Performing Arts Center at Academy Park, located at 112 Everbright Avenue in historic Franklin, Tennessee.
The evening will also feature a special performance by the youth winner of the Music Mondays Talent Contest, an American Idol-style competition hosted recently by CCM Reunion and FrankTown Open Hearts, a Franklin, Tennessee-based ministry dedicated to being Jesus to the inner city youth of Williamson County, Tennessee. The Music Mondays Talent Contest was held at Christ Community Church of Franklin, and judged by CCM pioneers Tim Archer and Cheri Keaggy, along with singer/songwriter and author David Teems.
A portion of the proceeds from the inaugural CCM Reunion concert will benefit FrankTown Open Hearts.
“Contemporary Christian music was birthed during the Jesus Movement of the early 1970s,” said Grammy winner Tim Archer, of The Archers, whose performance at the concert will mark his return to the stage after recovering from oral cancer.
“Somehow, this small-town preacher’s kid who liked to sing and play guitar found himself right in the middle of it. Some have called us pioneers, but really, we were just trying to reach and encourage the young people in our community with music they could relate to,” he said.
“Now, after a music career spanning four decades, singing around the world and receiving an honor or two along the way, I find myself turning back to the roots of my CCM experience — an authentic, heart-felt expression of faith through music.”
For more information about CCM Reunion, visit www.CCMReunion.com . Tickets for the inaugural CCM Reunion concert range from $18-$27, and are available online from the Williamson County Performing Arts Center at Academy Park at www.tickets.vendini.com .
Evie Tornquist Karlsson, known by her fans as simply “Evie,” was the first female star of contemporary Christian music. She is a member of the Gospel Music Hall of Fame and a two-time Dove Award winner for Female Vocalist of the Year. With more than 30 albums and three Grammy nominations to her credit, Evie’s classic CCM hits include “Come On, Ring Those Bells” and “Give Them All.”
Known for their signature harmonies and crisp vocal arrangements, the ground-breaking pop-Gospel group The Archers helped define contemporary Christian music in the seventies. Performing on the Grammy Awards telecast twice, the group took home a Grammy for “The Lord’s Prayer.” They were the first to record the Andrae Crouch classic “Jesus Is the Answer” and are remembered for CCM hits like “It Wouldn’t Be Enough,” “Pickin’ Up the Pieces,” and “Stand Up.” Original members Tim and Steve Archer, and Janice Archer Cruse, will be introducing Tim’s daughter Ashley Archer Blackledge at this event, which marks Tim Archer’s return to the stage following surgery for oral cancer.
Beginning as a worship leader at a small church in Southern California, veteran CCM artist Cheri Keaggy has ministered through music and testimony for more than twenty years. Her debut album, Child of the Father, released to rave reviews in 1994, earning her a Dove Award nomination for New Artist of the Year. Nine albums, nine number one songs, three Dove Award nominations and a Dove Award win later, Keaggy continues to be a mainstay on Adult Contemporary and Inspirational radio, while congregations the world over sing her songs, including “There is Joy in the Lord” and “In Remembrance of Me.”
It was during the Jesus Movement of the early 70s that the seeds of what would become Farrell & Farrell were sown, as the husband-and-wife duo began traveling and singing all over the United States. They were among the first artists to take CCM to Australia and the Eastern Communist Block. Farrell & Farrell’s eight albums produced numerous No. 1 songs, including “People in a Box” and “Boundless Love.” Their music always enjoyed very broad demographic appeal and it is widely accepted that Farrell & Farrell introduced techno-music into the Christian genre.
For more information about CCM Reunion, visit www.CCMReunion.com.
FrankTown Open Hearts operates based on a mission to “be Jesus” to Williamson County’s inner-city youth. Their goal is to bring physical and spiritual hope to low-income youth within the community by instilling in them critical life skills. They provide academic assistance, mentoring, recreation and spiritual growth opportunities for youth ages 8-18 in the form of weekly educational and vocational classes.
The classes meet three nights each week, and FrankTown supplies transportation to and from their programs, as well as a hot meal each night. In addition to their regular programming of weekly courses, FrankTown provides college entrance test prep and college application assistance, which is a key service within the organization. For more information about FrankTown Open Hearts, visit www.franktownopenhearts.com.
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Photo captions: 1) CCM Reunion Concert Banner. 2) Gospel Music Hall of Famer Evie Tornquist Karlsson was one of the first female stars of the nascent contemporary Christian music genre. (White Field Music photo). 3) Grammy winners, The Archers, helped define Christian pop-rock during the 70s. (Brian Boyd photo) 4) Michael Ireland of ASSIST News Service.
About the Writer: Michael Ireland is a volunteer internet journalist serving as Chief Correspondent for the ASSIST News Service, as well as an Ordained Minister, and an award-winning local cable-TV program host/producer who has served with ASSIST Ministries and written for ANS since its beginning in 1989. He has reported for ANS from Jamaica, Mexico, Nicaragua, Israel, Jordan, China, and Russia. You may follow Michael on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/MichaelIrelandMediaMissionary.com , and on Twitter at @Michael_ASSIST. Please consider helping Michael cover his expenses in bringing news of the Persecuted Church, by logging-on to: https://actintl.givingfuel.com/ireland-michael
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