Legendary Rock Singer John Schlitt Enjoys Multiple Career Highlights in 2012
Multiple Grammy and Dove Award-winning recording artist John Schlitt has spent 2012 enjoying one career highlight after another, including the May 8 release of his fourth solo CD, The Greater Cause. Schlitt toured extensively throughout the U.S. and internationally - highlights included his performance at the Faith and Freedom Celebration, held in coordination with the Republican National Convention, along with a guest appearance on The Mike Huckabee Show at the invitation of the former Arkansas governor, who endorsed Schlitt and his music to his nationwide audience. Schlitt also made a host of national media appearances, including CBN's 700 Club Interactive.
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"When I look back on this year, I am totally blessed by all that has occurred," says Schlitt. "We worked hand-in-hand with over 500 partners to release a new album, took that music to different locations all over the world and shared in some amazing moments, such as honoring the Mom of the Year at the 700 Club, who is a huge Petra fan! How can I say anything but 'Wow! Thank you, Jesus.'"
Much of the momentum surrounding the year began with the release of The Greater Cause, which was released May 8 by 4K Records and is distributed by New Day Christian Distributors.
Schlitt, named the best rock singer in Christian music history by GospelMusicChannel.com, stepped from behind the microphone to co-write seven of this project's 11 tracks with such Christian music luminaries as Grammy, Emmy and Dove Award winner Andrew Ramsey (India.Arie, Jonny Lang and Mandisa) and Dan Needham, who has worked on more than 40 Dove and Grammy Award-winning projects with the likes of Michael McDonald, Amy Grant and Chris Tomlin; as well as Chris Rodriguez, Scott Faircloff and Gene Miller.
Dove Award winner and 2008 BMI Songwriter of the Year Ed Cash (Chris Tomlin, Amy Grant, David Crowder Band) and Dove Award winner Ian Eskelin (Francesca Battistelli, Hawk Nelson, Point of Grace) also contributed songs to the project.
Schlitt recorded The Greater Cause with capital raised through the innovative Kickstarter "crowd-funding" business model. An army of fans, dubbed the TGC Crew (The Greater Cause Crew) in honor of the CD title, contributed financially to make the album possible. In return, the TGC Crew members received pre-release copies of the CD, as well as a limited number of unique donor gifts, such as handmade commemorative plaques, joining the musician at a studio session, vocal lessons and concert performances.
"Hope That Saves The World," the lead single from The Greater Cause, hit the Top 30 on the Billboard and Christian Music Weekly (CMW) music charts. The single, co-written by Schlitt and his producer, Dan Needham, landed in the No. 29 spot on Billboard's Christian Rock chart and No. 25 on CMW's Rock chart.
Throughout the year, Schlitt has been featured on numerous national media outlets, including Christian Broadcasting Network's (CBN) 700 Club Interactive, where he made a surprise appearance to honor the 2012 Mom of the Year, who is a huge fan of Schlitt and the seminal Christian rock band, Petra, for which Schlitt is familiar to many as the lead singer.
Schlitt toured throughout the U.S. and the world in support of the new project, with international concerts throughout Eastern and Western Europe, India, Russia and South America.
State-side, Schlitt's music was the centerpiece of a popular political rally, the Faith and Freedom Celebration, the faith-based kick-off to the Republican National Convention. At the event, radio host Jay Sekulow introduced Schlitt's "Faith & Freedom" video, with Schlitt performing the song live for the audience.
Schlitt shared the stage with a number of speakers including former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee, former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich and Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, among other GOP luminaries.
Backstage, Huckabee, a fan of Schlitt's music, invited Schlitt to be a guest on his nationwide radio show.
During their live radio interview, Huckabee talked with Schlitt about the patriotism expressed through the singer/songwriter's music. As Huckabee ended the interview, he urged his audience to listen to Schlitt's music, particularly the single, "Faith & Freedom."
"I love the song!" said Huckabee. "It's great music...the lyrics remind us of what ought to be at the very heart of our convictions as Americans - that faith and freedom really matter."
For more information about Schlitt and The Greater Cause, visit johnwschlitt.com.
About John Schlitt:
With more than three decades worth of water under the musical bridge, John Schlitt has enjoyed a stellar career as a solo artist, as the former lead singer for Grammy Award-winning Christian band Petra, one of the most successful Christian rock bands of all times, and as the former lead singer for popular '70s mainstream rock band Head East. He has been inducted into the Gospel Music Hall of Fame as the lead singer of Petra during the years when the band won 10 Dove Awards and four Grammy Awards. Schlitt was recently named the best rock singer in Christian music history by GospelMusicChannel.com. According to the website, Schlitt "remains one of the most distinctive and impactful men to ever stand behind a microphone." Schlitt was also named Male Vocalist of the Year in About.com's 2011 Readers' Poll in a category that included Chris Tomlin, Jeremy Camp. Brandon Heath and Bebo Norman.
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