CHRISTIAN MUSIC is having major success on the US mainstream charts at the moment, and that includes Aussie band UNITED… but we’ll come back to them a little later.
NEEDTOBREATHE, the band that last year toured Australia with Third Day and Levi McGrath, debuted at #4 on the Billboard Top 200 with its new album Hard Love almost a month ago.
[The Billboard chart lists the 200 best selling albums across the USA each week from all genres – not just Christian music!]
Then last week, Bryan and Katie Torwalt’s new album Champion debuted in the Top 20 of the chart. The album featuring the lead single Let There Be Light, became the 19th best selling album across the US.
While it could be argued that NEEDTOBREATHE has a strong mainstream following outside the Christian community, Bryan and Katie’s music is overtly Christian.
Now this week, Skillet – a band that sees themselves as Christians playing to mainstream audiences – has taken its new album Unleashed to #3.
Its two previous albums Rise and Awake also debuted on Billboard in the Top 5 at #4 and #2.
Skillet’s John Cooper told the TCM Update, he has no idea how that’s happened.
One of the challenges facing Christian acts on the mainstream charts at the moment is their ability to linger on the survey for longer than a month or two, or in some cases, just a week!
Lauren Daigle’s How Can It Be is one album reversing this trend.
The project – which includes the songs Trust In You, Come Alive (Dry Bones), and First – peaked at #30 on the Billboard Top 200 album chart over a year ago, and has stayed there for 66 weeks so far.
And the Aussie band UNITED (which I promised we’d also talk about) peaked at #40 four weeks ago with Of Dirt And Grace: Live From The Land and is still in the Billboard Top 200 albums chart. Great effort!
AMERICAN band Stars Go Dim is heading to Australia next March to play at the Forest Edge Music Festival in Victoria.
Forest Edge is the only surviving music festival catering for the Christian community, though one or two more are being planned.
The group – which started as a side project for some of the members of Pillar – is best known for the songs You Are Loved, Stars and Walking Like Giants.
Other acts playing at Forest Edge include Alabaster Box, Fatai, The Quick & the Dead, and Slip On Stereo. More will be announced next month.
Forest Edge Music Festival will be held March 11-13.
Finally, Planetshakers who’ve brought us The Anthem and Nothing Is Impossible, next month releases its new project, Overflow in standard and deluxe versions.
Recorded at the annual conference in Melbourne, the album is said to contain “high energy celebration” in songs like Come Right Now, and captures “more intimate heart cry” in Sings My Soul.
The 11-track album includes the group’s most successful radio single of the past decade, I Know Who You Are.