Nashville is still the unofficial home of Christian music, but its profile has been fading a bit in recent years. The Gospel Music Association's Dove Awards moved to Atlanta in 2011, and Gospel Music Week, once a star-studded industry party that took over the whole of downtown, simply shriveled up and died. Fortunately, a new event is restoring Music City's rep as the epicenter of all things CCM. The first-ever K-Love Fan Awards kicked off with a bang on June 1, taking over the famed Ryman Auditorium to deliver a sold-out show. Hosted by Duck Dynasty stars Phil, Miss Kay, Jase and Missy Robertson, the night included nearly two dozen live performances. Everyone from TobyMac, For King & Country, Amy Grant and Steven Curtis Chapman to Jamie Grace, Needtobreathe, Citizen Way and Michael W. Smith took the stage.
The show ran well over three hours, which had some of the families in the audience heading for the doors early. (K-Love should know you can't keep Christians out past 11 pm on a Saturday night -- they have church in the morning!) Those who stayed, though, were treated to Third Day closing out the show in wonderful Southern rock style. And as the crowd streamed out, it was clear this event wasn't meant merely to entertain. It's also a challenge to the dominance of the Dove Awards -- poised to return to Nashville this fall. The gauntlet has been thrown. Stay tuned to see how it plays out.
Relive the night or pretend you were there with our K-Love Fan Awards 2013 playlist, featuring music by the winners, performers and nominees!
Male Artist of the Year: Chris Tomlin
Female Artist of the Year: Kari Jobe
Group/Duo of the Year: Casting Crowns
Breakthrough Artist of the Year: For King & Country
Song of the Year: "Redeemed" by Big Daddy Weave
Artist of the Year: TobyMac