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Lauren Daigle, Zach Williams & More Vie for Artist of the Year at 2021 GMA Dove Awards

Lauren Daigle, Zach Williams & More Vie for Artist of the Year at 2021 GMA Dove Awards

For KING & COUNTRY, Lauren Daigle and Zach Williams — who won artist of the year at the GMA Dove Awards in each of the last three years — are nominated again in that category this year. The other nominees in the category are Elevation Worship and Phil Wickham, who have yet to win the top award.

The Gospel Music Association announced nominations for the 52nd annual GMA Dove Awards on Wednesday (Aug 11). Top nominees include Steven Furtick with 10 nods, Chris Brown (not the R&B star) with nine, Wayne Haun with eight, Elevation Worship and Brandon Lake with seven each, for KING & COUNTRY with six, and CeCe Winans, Ed Cash, Tiffany Hammer (Hudson) and Williams with five each.

Voted on by the GMA’s professional membership, this year’s nominees were chosen from more than 4,600 submitted entries.

Nominees were announced in a livestream event featuring Alex Campos, John Cooper, Bill & Gloria Gaither, Kari Jobe, Brian & Jenn Johnson, Jonathan McReynolds, Wande and Tauren Wells. The announcement premiered on the GMA Dove Awards’ YouTube and Facebook pages with clips on the Dove Awards Instagram and TikTok.

“We are thrilled to welcome back an in-person Dove Awards this year and equally excited about our impressive list of nominees,” GMA president Jackie Patillo said in a statement. “As we continue to celebrate the immense creativity and diversity within our community, we’re looking forward to an awards program this year’s nominees deserve.”

Voting for the final winners will run from Aug. 19 through Aug. 26. The GMA Dove Awards are slated to be live and in person in Nashville on Oct. 19. The two-hour broadcast will air on TBN on Friday, Oct. 22, at 8 p.m. ET and will repeat at 10 p.m. ET.

Below is the list of nominations announced during Wednesday’s livestream. For the complete list of nominees, visit

Song of the year (songwriter’s award):
“Another in the Fire” – Chris Davenport, Joel Houston
“Famous For (I Believe)” – Alexis Slifer, Chuck Butler, Jordan Sapp, Krissy Nordhoff, Tauren Wells
“Graves Into Gardens” – Steven Furtick, Chris Brown, Tiffany Hudson, Brandon Lake
“Speak to Me” – Donnie McClurkin, Jeremy Hicks, Johnta Austin, Troy Taylor
“Thank You for It All” – Aaron Lindsey, Christopher Thomas Leach, Jamone Davis, Marvin Sapp
“The Blessing” – Chris Brown, Cody Carnes, Kari Jobe, Steven Furtick
“The Father’s House” – Benjamin Hastings, Cory Asbury, Ethan Hulse
“There Was Jesus” Jonathan Smith, Casey Beathard, Zach Williams
“TOGETHER” – Joel Smallbone, Josh Kerr, Kirk Franklin, Luke Smallbone, Ran Jackson, Ricky Jackson
“Truth Be Told” AJ Pruis, Matthew West

Artist of the year:
Elevation Worship
Lauren Daigle
Phil Wickham
Zach Williams

New artist of the year:
Brandon Lake
Dante Bowe
Hope Darst
Maverick City Music

Gospel artist of the year:
CeCe Winans
Jonathan McReynolds
Kirk Franklin
Tasha Cobbs Leonard
Travis Greene

Southern gospel artist of the year:
Ernie Haase & Signature Sound
Gaither Vocal Band
Jason Crabb
Joseph Habedank
Triumphant Quartet

Pop/contemporary recorded song of the year:
“Famous For (I Believe)” – Tauren Wells
“Good God Almighty” – Crowder
“Hold On to Me” – Lauren Daigle
“There Was Jesus” – Zach Williams, ft. Dolly Parton
“TOGETHER” – for KING & COUNTRY, ft. Kirk Franklin & Tori Kelly

Southern gospel recorded song of the year:
“First Church of Mercy” – The Sound
“I Just Feel Like Something Good Is About to Happen” – Gaither Vocal Band
“My King Is Known By Love” – Crabb Family
“Religion Isn’t Working” – Joseph Habedank
“Wake Up” – Ernie Haase & Signature Sound

Contemporary gospel recorded song of the year:
“I Got It” – Pastor Mike Jr.
“joyful” – Dante Bowe
“Never Lost” – CeCe Winans
“Speak to Me” – Koryn Hawthorne
“Touch from You” – Tamela Mann

Worship recorded song of the year:
“Battle Belongs” – Phil Wickham
“God So Loved” – We The Kingdom
“Graves Into Gardens” – Elevation Worship, ft. Brandon Lake
“Jireh” – Elevation Worship / Maverick City Music, ft. Chandler Moore & Naomi Raine
“Peace Be Still” – Hope Darst

Rap/hip hop album of the year:
3:34 – Zauntee
Feared by Hell – Social Club Misfits
His Glory Alone – KB
Restoration – Lecrae
The Divine Storm – Ty Brasel

Pop/contemporary album of the year:
Chris Tomlin & Friends – Chris Tomlin
Holy Water – We the Kingdom
Inhale (exhale) – MercyMe
No Stranger – Natalie Grant
To Love a Fool – Cory Asbury

Bluegrass/country/roots album of the year:
Alone With My Faith – Harry Connick Jr.
Little More Love – Jordan Family Band
My Savior – Carrie Underwood
Peace At Last – Nelons
Songs of the Times – Isaacs

Spanish language album of the year:
Desesperado (Spanish) – Evan Craft
Mil Generaciones – Miel San Marcos, Essential Worship
Renovada – EP – Blanca
Todos Mis Mejores Amigos – Hillsong Young & Free, Hillsong En Español
Uno – Alex Zurdo – Redimi2 – Funky

Worship album of the year:
Graves Into Gardens – Elevation Worship
Old Church Basement – Elevation Worship / Maverick City Music
Revival’s in the Air – Bethel Music
The Blessing (Live) – Kari Jobe
The People Tour: Live From Madison Square Garden – Hillsong UNITED

Inspirational film of the year:
A Week Away
My Brother’s Keeper

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