Centricity Music has seen incredible growth since the company opened its doors eight years ago and 2014 has proven to be a record-breaking year for the label. The past12 months have brought incredible radio airplay, high-profile touring opportunities, exponential sales growth and expanded recognition for the company's roster; Aaron Shust, Andrew Peterson, Carrollton, Jason Gray, Jonny Diaz, Lauren Daigle, Lindsay McCaul and Unspoken. With three new signings coming in 2015, JJ Weeks, Jarod Anderson and Jordan Feliz, the future continues to look bright
"This year has been one for the record books for all of us at Centricity Music," says Caren Seidle, General Manager, Centricity Music. "The company had three No. 1 singles at radio, we have sold more tracks and albums than any prior year, and our artists saw increased touring schedules, with some of these artists being the headlining act. It takes a lot of faith, sacrifice and long hours to make this all happen and we are very grateful for this continual growth. We couldn't have reached these milestones without the support of fans, radio, retail, press, our artists and the Centricity team, as well as everyone's families who put up with the crazy schedules. A big thank you to everyone."
2014 saw Jason Gray delivering his strongest album to date with Love Will Have The Final Word. The project became Gray's, and Centricity Music's highest debuting record, by entering the Top Ten on Billboard's Christian Albums Chart. Critics gave the album impressive reviews with Worship Leader Magazine saying, "By far his strongest work," CCM Magazine calling it a "stunningly beautiful release," and NewReleaseTuesday.com adding, "stellar offering." The album also gave Gray his first No. 1 AC radio hit, "With Every Act Of Love." Gray was busy on the touring circuit as he was featured on the high-profile The Bible: Son of God 2014 Tour, headlined for the first time with his With Every Act Of Love Tour this fall with Unspoken, Lindsay McCaul and Carrollton, followed by the Christmas Stories Tour with Lauren Daigle and Carrollton.
Unspoken continued their upward career momentum with their fastest charting single, "Start A Fire," securing the band their first No. 1 at AC Monitor and was No. 1 at AC Indicator for five weeks. The self-titled album reached the Top Ten of sales on Billboard's Current Contemporary Chart. The project had Crosswalk.com saying, "has a decidedly live feel that really elevates the material," and Barnes&Noble adding, "band widely considered to be among the most promising acts in Christian music." The music video for "Start A Fire" was shot at several locations around the country that included, Baton Rouge, LA; San Antonio, TX; Oklahoma City, OK; Denver, CO and Kansas City, KS and received over 650,000 views online. Unspoken also was busy on the tour circuit with doing Brown Bag Concerts for radio stations, which included KSBJ in Houston, TX, performing at K-LOVE's Fan Experience in Nashville, TN, and being featured on Jason Gray's With Every Act Of Love Tour this fall.
Lauren Daigle was one of Christian music's breakout artists this year with the title track of her debut album, How Can It Be, reaching the Top Ten at Christian radio and No. 1 on iTunes Christian Singles Chart. It was also recognized by iTunes as one of the top 20 Christian releases of 2014, while the single was picked as one of the Top Christian songs of the year. At the same time, the lyric and acoustic videos for the song have surpassed 2.4 million views. With powerful vocals that are drawing comparisons of Adele and Amy Winehouse, Daigle has been receiving incredible album reviews with Worship Leader Magazine saying, "beautiful album," NewReleaseTuesday.com exclaiming, "fantastic debut," and Breathecast adding, "breath of fresh air." Daigle's engaging and vivacious personality is resonating with fans, radio and press, and has led to her doing impromptu performances on her numerous radio tours. Check out Daigle singing the weather forecast live on-air at KVNE in Tyler, TX, https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=aSkyrSKi9jY. Daigle also toured with Aaron Shust this fall on his Morning Rises Tour and is currently touring with Jason Gray and Carrollton for Gray's Christmas Stories Tour.
Aaron Shust continues his multi-week chart-topping success at Christian radio with a seven week run on Billboard's Soft AC Chart with the single, "No One Higher," from his current album, Morning Rises. Shust headlined the Morning Rises spring tour in support of the album that featured Mikeschair, Jonny Diaz and Lauren Daigle. For the first time in Shust's career, he released a Christmas project, Unto Us, in October. The album features the Prague Symphony Orchestra on ten new songs, which gives a unique sound and an old world/new world feel to the record. Reviews have been stellar with JesusFreakHideout.com saying, "Aaron has pulled off something spectacular with Unto Us," CCM Magazine, "perfect soundtrack for Christmas festivities," and Phantom Tollbooth, "includes some of the greatest music ever composed, performed and recorded." Shust is currently on a Christmas with Aaron Shust tour that features local choirs and orchestras on selected dates.
Andrew Peterson began 2014 with the release of his fourth and final book in the Wingfeather Saga series, The Warden and the Wolf King, which was named World Magazine's 2014 Children's Book of the Year. The award-winning author did a book signing in Nashville, TN which was packed with fans and a line waiting to get in spilled out onto the sidewalk a block long. Peterson also hosted his fifth annual Hutchmoot event in Nashville and once again the conference was a sell-out in a matter of minutes. And to his fans delight, Peterson released a retrospective album in November, After All These Years, which features favorite songs from his last eight studio albums that spans a successful 18-year recording career. Currently, Peterson is on his 15th annual Behold The Lamb Of God Christmas Tour that is once again a sell-out across the country.
Lindsay McCaul released her debut album for Centricity Music, One More Step, in August and it quickly became a critically acclaimed project. Sound Opinion declares, "artist worthy of your attention," Worship Leader Magazine adds, "vocals clear and pleasing," and NewReleaseTuesday.com says, "collection of heartfelt and inspirational songs." McCaul also did several interviews for the new record and those include; 700 Club Interactive, Campus Crusade for Christ, CCM Magazine, YouthWalk Magazine, All Access, and Moody's Chris Fabry Live!. Fans were treated to live performances of McCaul's music this year on The BranDisa Tour with Mandisa and Brandon Heath and on Jason Gray's With Every Act Of Love Tour.
Jonny Diaz's debut project for Centricity Music, Let It Fly, led to the talented singer/songwriter breaking into the country music market. The first single from the project, "Thank God I've Got Her," was added to the playlist on Sirius XM's show The Highway and sent the song to No. 4 on iTunes Christian Singles Chart. Diaz joined Aaron Shust's Morning Rises Tour this spring and was a presenter at the 45th Annual GMA Awards in October. The next big project for Diaz includes his wife, Libby, as they are expecting their first child, a daughter, in May.
Carrollton released their debut project for Centricity Music in February, Breathe In Deep, and the group has been an active touring band since the album's street date. Carrollton is quickly becoming known for their powerful and energetic stage performances that have been showcased on their own tour dates and on Jason Gray's With Every Act Of Love Tour and his Christmas Stories Tour. The group's ministry involves working with teens, as they performed at several Christ In Youth dates this summer and will be the featured performer at the upcoming Tennessee Christian Teen Convention in Gatlinburg, TN in January 2015. Also next year, Carrollton will record and release their second project for Centricity Music.