The 44th Annual GMA Dove Awards, hosted by Amy Grant and Kirk Franklin, took place Tuesday, October 15th in Nashville, Tenn., and celebrated a joyfully diverse range of Christian artists and musical styles. English worship leader/songwriter Matt Redman was the biggest winner, taking home six Dove Awards. tobyMac and Jason Crabb follow with four each and Tasha Cobb and producer Wayne Haun each scored three awards. Chris Tomlin, Tamela Mann and LeCrae were next with two awards each.
tobyMac, awarded Artist of the Year, said, "It feels weird to be called Artist of the Year when I know it takes a family and I always want to acknowledge that. I said in one of my songs a long time ago, I'm just a little man trying to fit in God's plan. I still feel like that."
UP, formerly GMC TV, surprised Mandisa by honoring her with their “Uplift Someone” award, which recognizes an artist who has encouraged people and truly changed lives through their music and actions. Presented to Mandisa by Amy Grant, the network granted the award to the singer “for her music, message and humanitarian heart, all of which (individually and collectively) have inspired others.”
A number of Homecoming Friends show up on the list of winners, including the Gaither Vocal Band and Canton Junction, who tied for Southern Gospel Album of the Year. Quipped Bill Gaither as he took the stage to accept the award during the pre-show, "It’s getting harder and harder the older I get to get up on stage before the applause stops."
Bill was honored during the main broadcast with a tribute, featuring photos throughout his and Gloria's legendary career. Mark Lowry joked with Chonda Pierce before the tribute, saying "I think they're just doing this tribute because Bill's still alive after all this time." Dailey & Vincent began singing "He Touched Me" and were joined by Ernie Haase & Signature Sound, the Isaacs, Karen Peck and others, and the multi-generational audience responded with a standing ovation at the song's conclusion.
Another of the evening's highlights was a touching tribute to Billy Graham by Michael W. Smith and the Newsboys.
GMA Executive Director Jackie Patillo said, "What an amazing night of music and honor. Tonight's performances were all a testament to why we are all here. On behalf of membership of the GMA, we are proud to present this year's Dove winners and congratulate each of them and the nominees on their achievements. We would also like to thank the city of Nashville for welcoming us back home and to the wonderful host for the evening, Lipscomb University."
Artist of the Year - tobyMac
New Artist of the Year - for King & Country
Song of the Year - Matt Redman "10,000 Reasons"
Songwriter of the Year - Matt Redman
Producer of the Year - Ed Cash
Contemporary Christian Performance - Matt Redman, "10,000 Reasons"
Pop Contemporary Song - Matt Redman, "10,000 Reasons"
Pop Contemporary Album - TobyMac, Eye On It
Praise & Worship Song - Matt Redman, "10,000 Reasons"
Praise & Worship Album - Chris Tomlin, Burning Lights
Rap Hip Hop Song - Lecrae feat. Mali Music, "Tell the World"
Rap Hip Hop Album - Lecrae, Gravity
Rock Contemporary Song - NEEDTOBREATHE, "Keep Your Eyes Open"
Rock Contemporary Album - Colton Dixon, A Messenger
Rock Song - Skillet, "Sick Of It"
Rock Album - Red, Release the Panic
Inspirational Song - Jason Crabb, "Satisfied"
Inspirational Album - Jason Crabb, Love is Stronger
Southern Gospel Performance - Jason Crabb, "That's What the Blood is For"
Southern Gospel Song - Jason Crabb, "That's What the Blood is For"
(There was a tie in this category) Southern Gospel Album - Gaither Vocal Band, Pure and Simple
Southern Gospel Album - Canton Junction, Canton Junction
Bluegrass Song - The Little Roy & Lizzy Show, "He Washed My Soul"
Bluegrass Album - Dailey & Vincent, The Gospel Side of Dailey & Vincent
Country Song - Devin McGlamery with Dailey & Vincent, "From My Rags to His Riches"
Contemporary Gospel/Urban Song - Tasha Cobbs, "Break Every Chain"
Contemporary Gospel/Urban Album - Tasha Cobbs, Grace
Gospel Performance - Tasha Cobbs, "Break Every Chain"
Traditional Gospel Song - Tamela Mann, "Take Me to the King"
Traditional Gospel Album - Tamela Mann, Best Days
Country Album - Jeff & Sheri Easter, Eyes Wide Open
Instrumental Album - Michael W. Smith, Glory
Children's Music Album - Gateway Next, Look Up
Spanish Album - Kari Jobe, Donde Te Encuentro
Special Event Album - Chris Tomlin, Kristian Stanfill, Matt Redman, Brett Younker, Kari Jobe, Crowder, Christy Nockels, Passion: Let the Future Begin
Christmas Album - Steven Curtis Chapman, Joy
Musical - Christ the Redeemer, Joel Lindsey, Jeff Bumgardner, Daniel Simpson, Daniel Semsen
Children's Musical - Blast Off!, Celeste Clydesdale, David T. Clydesdale
Recorded Music Packaging - Toby Mac, Jan Cook, Eye On It
Short Form Video - Toby Mac, Feat. Britt Nicole, Eye On It
Long Form Video - Hillsong UNITED, Hillsong UNITED: Live in Miami
Inspirational Film - Courageous, Alex Kendrick, Stephen Kendrick