ASCAP Christian Music Awards Recap

The 2020 ASCAP Christian Music Awards, taking place this year in an innovative virtual awards format, shined a spotlight on the genre across all social media platforms.

Exclusive photos, acceptance speeches and performances from Christian music’s top songwriters, producers and publishers were shared via @ASCAP on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. A complete list of winners can be found on the ASCAP website at www.ascap.com/christianawards20.

Highlights included:

· ASCAP Chairman of the Board and President Paul Williams’s video introduction to this year’s virtual Christian Music Awards celebration, thanking ASCAP songwriters, composers and music publishers: “What we do, harnessing what’s in our hearts and souls to create art that can transform lives has great power. We can offer healing and a vision for a better future. We can move hearts and minds and inspire real change. That deserves to be honored and celebrated.” LINK

· A heartfelt message from Matthew West, ASCAP Christian Music Songwriter of the Year and Song of the Year winner for “Nobody:” “I love writing songs. That’s really it … I love it. I wake up in the morning and I get excited by the thought that it’s part of my day. I love working with other writers and artists. There are so many talented people in the music industry. You guys make me better. You make me want to be better.” With special thanks to ASCAP, Mark Hall of Casting Crowns, Provident Label Group, and Chris Farren and Chris Van Belkom from Combustion Music, he closed with, “Now more than ever, the world needs songs filled with hope because there is a void of hope in this world, but I believe that music can help fill that void. Music that lets them know that hope can still be found. It’s my honor to write songs like that, and those are the kind of songs I wanna write until my last breath.” LINK

· West gives us the story behind ASCAP Christian Music Awards Song of the Year "Nobody,” before performing it exclusively for ASCAP: "This is a song about maybe coming to the realization that being a nobody ain't such a bad thing." LINK

· A beautiful, exclusive performance of “God Only Knows” by for KING & COUNTRY, featuring ASCAP Award-winning writer Joel Smallbone and his brother Luke Smallbone. LINK

· Christian Music Publisher of the Year, Capitol CMG Publishing’s co-president Brad O’Donnell accepting the award and sharing a virtual high-five with the rest of his team via Zoom. LINK

· Jason Roy of Building 429 offering personal congratulations to first-time winner Riley Friesen on his award for the band’s hit, “Fear No More,” recalling how it “started out as a ballad and ended up being this big ol’ anthemic song.” LINK

· Brett Younker, co-writer of the Pat Barrett hit “Build My Life,” accepting his award from home: “It's just really special to think about. There's been people all over the world that have been singing this song over the last couple of years.” LINK

· Songwriter Riley Friesen and publisher Stacey Willbur of Full Circle Music Publishing excitedly unboxing, cheering and thanking ASCAP for their awards for "Fear No More" by Building 429. LINK

· Sincere thanks from first-time winner Andrew Bergthold of We the Kingdom for “Holy Water,” saying “It is an incredible honor to get this award… it means the world to me. Thank you to all the staff at ASCAP for all the work and hours that you put in on our behalf.” LINK

· Jon Lowry of Unspoken accepting delivery of his award for the hit "Reason” from his enthusiastic toddler daughter (LINK) and a special performance of “Reason” by the band. LINK

· Michael Cochren, out on a drive-in tour, remotely accepting his first ASCAP Awards for “Church (Take Me Back)” and “One Day” from his publisher Jess Chambers of Emack Music, saying “It’s been amazing to be part of the music community this year and get to contribute songs that people are hearing and hopefully point them to the hope beyond 2020… I’m floored and humbled.” (LINK)

· A mini-movie from Ryan Stevenson unboxing the award for his hit "With Lifted Hands.” LINK

· Exclusive photos of top Christian music songwriters with their awards, including Ben Glover for "Almost Home" and "Best News Ever,” both by MercyMe (LINK); Colby Wedgeworth for "Faith" by Jordan Feliz, "Greatness of Our God" by Newsboys and "Haven't Seen It Yet” by Danny Gokey (LINK); Paul Duncan for "Faith" by Jordan Feliz (LINK); first-time winners Dameon Aranda (LINK) and Louis Biancaniello (LINK) pictured with their awards for "Symphony” by Switch.