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2/23/2012 - Five-Star Reviews and Highest Sales Numbers To Date Wrap Release Week of Audrey Assad’s Heart
What a week it has been for Sparrow Records singer-songwriter Audrey Assad, whose critically adored sophomore album, Heart, bowed on Valentine’s Day to across-the-board praise and her highest sales-week numbers to date. Heart ranked in at No. 3 on the Christian Soundscan chart, selling over 7,300 units, giving her a 185 percent sales increase over the debut week of her last album, The House You’re Building. The CD also crowned the iTunes ® Christian & Gospel Albums chart and reached No. 18 on the overall iTunes ® Albums chart. In addition, before Heart’s release, Rhapsody named it one of their “Most Anticipated Albums of 2012.”
Here is just some of the acclaim being heaped on Assad:
"This thoughtful, cerebral singer-songwriter has a unique approach... In an industry that can be confining at times, Assad shines as a true original." -Rhapsody
"...the New Jersey native adopts a gorgeously understated and stripped-back approach that allows her fragile ethereal vocals to take center stage...Heart is, on the whole, an impassioned and sincere affair worthy of joining recent efforts from Ingrid Michaelson and Sara Bareilles…" – All Music Guide
“Albums this thoughtful and mature are very rare on just your second try, and Assad has clearly spent time cultivating a sound and message that are completely true to her artistic vision. Even fans of edgier music can't deny the powerful honesty and authenticity of Audrey Assad's Heart.”
– Christian Musician
“Reminiscent of Joni Mitchell and Carole King, Heart, is a great sophomore effort by a talented artist…” – Worship Leader
“If Audrey's debut album was to show the world what a talented singer and songwriter she is, then Heart does this in abundance, adding an extra edge of maturity. “Breaking You”…shows Audrey at her best. And when she is at her best, no other singer gets close to her.”
“Sparrow,” the debut single from Heart, is currently No. 5 on Soft AC/Inspo Monitored chart, with it being the most-added track on that chart this week.
The singer-songwriter and multiple GMA Dove Award nominee recently wrapped a stint on Matt Maher’s “The Love In Between” tour, having performed in markets including St. Louis, Washington D.C., and New Orleans, among others. Beginning March 23 in Red Bluff, Calif., Assad will pair with singer-songwriter JJ Heller for a spring co-headlining tour that concludes on April 26 in Raleigh, N.C. For all tour information, visit www.audreyassad.com.
2/15/2012 - Audrey Assad’s Sophomore Album, Heart, Releases This Week To Widespread Praise
Acclaimed songstress Audrey Assad is already earning stellar praise for her buzzed-about sophomore album, Heart, which bowed, appropriately, on Valentine’s Day at retailers nationwide. The 12-track Sparrow Records release spent its street day at No. 1 on the iTunes Christian Albums chart.
"I worked on Heart with all of my heart, and I am so, so proud of it," says Assad. "In both its strengths and its inevitable weaknesses, it was crafted with as much humanity and honesty as I could summon—I love this music, and I can't wait to share it with the world."
Below is just a sampling of what critics are saying:
“If the end of 2012 is described as ‘The Year of Audrey Assad,’ you needn’t be surprised. Heart is that good.” - CCM
"With the help of producer Marshall Altman, Assad has put together a collection of work that completely triumphs. Heart not only serves to further define Assad’s signature style, but should confirm her status as an artist of formidable talent." – Crosswalk.com
"…Audrey Assad is a seasoned singer-songwriter. Effortlessly chic, aesthetically fresh – it is impossible to not be swept away. Assad has created yet another modern-day masterpiece." - ChristianManifesto.com
"Christian music's most recent critical darling follows up her thoughtful 2010 debut with twelve tracks solidifying her status as an astute songbird ... Ballads like 'Breaking You' present Assad's vulnerable perspectives on relationship—spiritual and human—with vocal runs so disarming even great gut-spillers like Joni Mitchell would applaud her songsmith." - Christianity Today
“Audrey Assad's new album Heart is loaded with meaningful, engaging and beautiful songs and is the most amazing album by a female vocalist I've ever heard. From start to finish, all 12 songs weave a tapestry that is artful, engaging, catchy, emotional, and after several listens and goose-bump inducing moments, I am convinced that this is now my favorite album, ever. If I’m ever stranded on a deserted island and I can only listen to one album the rest of my days, Heart is the album I’ll take with me”
"Projects from singer/songwriters don't get too much better than this."
Assad shared Heart with some of her closest friends and colleagues, accompanied by chocolate, speakers and copies of the new record, one of which is featured here. Heart finds Assad once again collaborating with other songwriters (including Matt Maher and Derek Webb) and producer Marshall Altman (Brooke Fraser, Natasha Bedingfield, Marc Broussard), crafting another collection of songs that mine the depths of both heart and soul as only she can.
Assad’s debut, The House You’re Building, brought critical acclaim as her fresh sound was named among the best of 2010 from Relevant magazine, Rhapsody.com, Gospel Music Channel online and more and was profiled on CNN Online. In addition, The House You’re Building was named Amazon.com’s “Best Christian Music of 2010.” A long time supporter of Assad, iTunes® dubbed her debut record “Breakthrough Album of the Year” for the Christian & Gospel genre, and released Assad’s exclusive iTunes® Live from SoHo album in August.
The singer-songwriter and multiple GMA Dove Award nominee’s outing on Matt Maher’s “The Love In Between” tour wraps tonight in St. Louis, having performed in markets including Washington D.C., and New Orleans, among others. Beginning March 23 in Red Bluff, Calif., Assad will pair with singer-songwriter JJ Heller for a spring co-headlining tour which concludes on April 26 in Raleigh, N.C. For all tour information, visit www.audreyassad.com.
1/24/2012 - Audrey Assad's Sophomore Project Resonates with Heart
Due out on Valentine’s Day, Audrey Assad’s highly anticipated sophomore album, Heart, finds her once again collaborating with other songwriters (including Matt Maher and Derek Webb) and producer Marshall Altman (Brooke Fraser, Natasha Bedingfield, Marc Broussard), crafting another collection of songs that mine the depths of both heart and soul as only Assad can.
“I feel like this record is a deep look into my heart, with all the honesty and courage I can muster to write what I really see there and what I’m really feeling and experiencing about love, life and suffering,” says Assad. “So Heart became the record title.”
The singer-songwriter and multiple GMA Dove Award nominee’s first single from the project, “Sparrow,” is impacting radio now and is available for download at iTunes ® ( http://bit.ly/tXJRLN). "I've always loved the old hymn, ‘His Eye Is On The Sparrow,’” explains Assad. “Kyle Lee and I rearranged it with a new melody, and it's become a really special moment for me, singing it live. It's so simple and yet so beautiful a picture, to know that my life is witnessed in all its frailty and wonder by God—and all of it, even my most secret suffering, matters. It really does."
Assad’s debut, The House You’re Building, brought critical acclaim as her fresh sound was named among the best of 2010 from Relevant Magazine, Rhapsody.com, Gospel Music Channel online and more and was profiled on CNN Online. In addition, The House You’re Building was named Amazon.com’s “Best Christian Music of 2010.” A long time supporter of Assad, iTunes® dubbed her debut record “Breakthrough Album of the Year” for the Christian & Gospel genre, and released Assad’s exclusive iTunes® Live from SoHo album in August.
Starting last Friday (Jan. 20), Assad joined Matt Maher’s “The Love In Between” tour. The run of shows kicked off in Altoona, Penn., and will wrap on Feb. 16 in St. Louis, having made stops in Washington, D.C., and New Orleans, among others. Assad will then pair with singer-songwriter JJ Heller for a spring tour beginning March 23 in Red Bluff, Calif., and running through April 26 in Raleigh, N.C. For all tour information, visit www.audreyassad.com.
11/2/2011 - Audrey Assad Debuts New Single From Awaited Sophomore Project, Heart
Months before the debut of her anticipated second album, Heart, multiple GMA Dove Award nominee Audrey Assad is releasing her radio single “Sparrow” on iTunes ®. Due out on Valentine's Day, Heart finds Assad once again collaborating with other songwriters and producer Marshall Altman (Brooke Fraser, Natasha Bedingfield, William Fitzsimmons, Marc Broussard).
"I've always loved the old hymn, ‘His Eye Is On The Sparrow,’” explains Assad. “Kyle Lee and I rearranged it with a new melody and it's become a really special moment for me, singing it live...it's so simple and yet so beautiful a picture, to know that my life is witnessed in all its frailty and wonder by God—and all of it, even my most secret suffering, matters. It really does."
Assad’s debut, The House You’re Building, brought critical acclaim as her fresh sound was named among the best of 2010 from Relevant Magazine, Rhapsody.com, gmc online and more and was even profiled on CNN Online. In addition, The House You’re Building was named Amazon.com’s “Best Christian Music of 2010.” A long time supporter of Assad, iTunes ® dubbed her debut record “Breakthrough Album of the Year” for the Christian & Gospel genre, and released Assad’s exclusive iTunes ® “Live from SoHo” album in August.
Recently, Assad joined Sara Groves and newcomers Jenny & Tyler for the “Reason to Gather” tour. The run of shows began in October, and will end November 14 in Spokane, WA having made stops in Pittstown, NJ, Raleigh, NC, Gainesville, FL, Foster City, CA and more. For all tour information, visit www.audreyassad.com.
8/29/2011 - Audrey Assad’s iTunes Exclusive “Live from SoHo” Out Today
Acclaimed artist Audrey Assad releases an exclusive iTunes “Live from SoHo” record today. The stunning eight-track album was recorded live at the Apple Store in the SoHo district of New York City. It features a mixture of new tunes, songs from her debut The House You’re Building and an affectionate cover of Bruce Springsteen’s “Hungry Heart.” To purchase the album on iTunes visit, http://bit.ly/qfU63Y.
“I hand-picked a group of musicians whose skill and heart I felt I needed to perform these songs as emotively and beautifully as I heard them in my head: Marshall Altman, my dear friend and producer, my guitar hero Michael Chaves, Nathan Thomas, and Steven Kadar. Recording in New York City with these guys was a great pleasure, and I couldn’t be more proud of the finished product.”
A video journaling Audrey’s preparation for the project and trip to New York has also been released—directed by Kate Rentz and produced by Both/And Creative in collaboration with More Media. To embed or view, visit http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6tOvU9SaH_Y.
“I’m honestly tickled to have this opportunity, not to mention humbled,” says Audrey. “It’s such an honor to represent the incredibly talented people I write and sing and work with, and I’m grateful to iTunes for the opportunity to do so. It’s exciting to bring these songs to a new audience.”
About Audrey Assad:
28 year-old New Jersey native Audrey Assad propelled to the forefront of Christian music with her debut album on Sparrow Records titled The House You’re Building. Produced by Marshall Altman (Brooke Fraser, Natasha Bedingfield, William Fitzsimmons, Marc Broussard), the record released in the summer of 2010 to much acclaim. An avid reader, poems from Gerard Manley Hopkins and books were amongst Assad’s inspirations in her songwriting. Her collaborations with everyone from Chris Tomlin to Jars of Clay have marked her songwriting and vocal talent. Assad’s fresh sound was named among the best of 2010 from Relevant Magazine, Rhapsody.com, Gospel Music Channel online and more and was even profiled on CNN Online. In addition, The House You’re Building was named Amazon.com’s “Best Christian Music of 2010” and iTunes Christian & Gospel “Breakthrough Album of the Year.”
4/13/2011 - Chris Tomlin, David Crowder*Band, Audrey Assad and Josh Wilson Join EMI Family Charity Auction
Artists and songwriters including The Beatles, David Bowie, as well as EMI CMG label group's own Chris Tomlin, David Crowder*Band, Audrey Assad and Josh Wilson have donated exclusive personal items and memorabilia to the EMI family’s charity auction to raise funds to help the Red Cross support people affected by last month’s earthquake and tsunami in Japan. The first phase of the charity auction is in progress and ends on April 15th, with the second phase ending on April 21st.
The latest round of the charity auction, which is one of the biggest in eBay’s history, includes sixstepsrecords' artists Chris Tomlin, who has donated handwritten and autographed lyrics, as well as the David Crowder * Band autographing a Keytar. There are still four days to go until the end of the first phase of the auction, which features a personalized video of Josh Wilson performing one of his songs, and handwritten lyrics on doilies from Audrey Assad. Fellow artists in the first phase and writers include Coldplay, Beastie Boys, Jane Birkin, Depeche Mode, 30 Seconds To Mars, Simple Minds, Alice In Chains, and The Chemical Brothers.
Other items added to the auction today include access to private concert rehearsal by Sting, a limited edition ‘Yellow Submarine’ bicycle issued to mark the re-release of The Beatles’ famous movie, three framed and signed prints of David Gilmour taken in Gdansk, and more than 30 albums individually signed by David Bowie.
Also included in the auction is the MacBook used by David Guetta to create the demos for his hit album ‘One Love’, the hand written lyrics to ‘God Only Knows’ from the Beach Boys’ Brian Wilson, and one of the four original handmade "Zero" shirts worn by the Smashing Pumpkins’ Billy Corgan for the release and tour of ‘Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness’.
All funds raised from the charity auction will be used towards the Japanese Red Cross disaster relief efforts to help those affected by the earthquake and tsunami. Funds will be used for the on-going provision of immediate relief to support the affected population during their recovery. EMI Group has committed to match all funds raised from the auction up to a maximum of one million euros.
All the items can be viewed at ebay.com/EMIfamily4Japan.
3/23/2011 - Jars of Clay Set to Launch "The Shelter Tour" with Matt Maher, Derek Webb, and Audrey Assad
Three-time GRAMMY® Award-winning band Jars of Clay will take the community-minded theme behind its latest album, Jars of Clay Presents The Shelter, on the road this spring with the launch of The Shelter Tour. Featuring award-winning songwriter/worship leader Matt Maher and special guests Derek Webb and Audrey Assad, the tour will kick off March 30, in Greensburg, Pa., and travel through nearly 20 cities before wrapping up in Jackson, Miss., on May 7.
The Shelter Tour comes on the heels of Jars of Clay’s top billing in the Rock and Worship Road Show, one of the winter’s largest multi-artist tours, and is an opportunity for the band to create a live extension of the collaborative moments offered on their Shelter album. For that critically-acclaimed project, Jars of Clay brought in a collection of both songwriting and vocal guests (including both Maher and Assad), creating a huge collaborative environment never before attempted on any of the band’s previous projects.
“We knew in the beginning that we wanted as many voices as possible in the record,” guitarist Matt Odmark explains. “We wanted to make a record about community, and we wanted the recorded process to be community. We wanted it to be an expression of what it was trying to articulate from a concept standpoint.”
In that same spirit, The Shelter Tour will offer these musical colleagues and co-creators an opportunity to form a true collaborative evening not to be missed. Multi-platinum-selling Jars of Clay will perform songs from the new release, including the album’s single “Out Of My Hands,” along with many of their numerous hits – “Flood,” “Two Hands,” “Dead Man (Carry Me),” “Worlds Apart,” “Love Song For A Savior,” to name a few – which have become concert favorites.
The Shelter Tour will be sponsored by relief organization Blood:Water Mission and Azusa Pacific University.
Jars of Clay and Blood:Water Mission will celebrate the building of their 1000th clean water well in Sub-Saharan Africa during a May 10 event at the historic Ryman Auditorium. Tickets to the “Well:Done Celebration, Blood:Water Mission's Journey to 1000 Wells” are still available at http://www.bloodwatermission.com/welldone.php.
1/11/2011 - Audrey Assad’s The House You’re Building Named Amazon.com’s “Best Christian Music of 2010” and iTunes ® Christian & Gospel “Breakthrough Album of the Year”
2010 proved to be a glowing debut year for Sparrow Records’ Audrey Assad. Her freshman effort, The House You’re Building, was named Amazon.com’s “Best Christian Music of 2010” and iTunes ® Christian & Gospel “Breakthrough Album of the Year.” Amazon.com gave “Restless” the No. 8 position on the “Best Christian Songs of 2010” list. In addition, Assad collected the title of top selling new artist of 2010 in the Christian genre according to SoundScan.
The praise for Assad and The House You’re Building began at the album’s debut in July, and continued as the year went on with Rhapsody.com titling the record No. 7 on their list of the “Best Albums of 2010: Christian/Gospel” while both Relevant Magazine and Gospel Music Channel online gave it an honorable mention in their “Top 10 Albums of 2010.”
"I am honored and humbled by the response to The House You're Building,” comments Assad. “I spent so much time pouring my heart and soul into the songs, and to know that people are moved by them in any capacity is more than enough reward for those efforts. 2010 was an incredible year for me--I moved to Phoenix, I released a record and I got engaged! It feels like too many blessings for such a little life, but I am truly grateful."
Assad joined some of the industry’s finest on the road touring with Chris Tomlin, Matt Maher, Tenth Avenue North and Jars of Clay, within the last year. 2011 is shaping up to be an active year for Assad as she will join Jars of Clay on their Spring tour.
7/13/2010 - Audrey Assad's The House You're Building Earns Early Acclaim as Album Releases
Audrey Assad’s freshman release is proving to be a hit with critics as The House You’re Building debuts at retailers nationwide today.
Below is just a sample of what the reviews are saying...
“At the intersection of Joni Mitchell and Natalie Merchant, in a summer cottage once owned by Carole King and occasionally rented by Dido, you'll find Audrey Assad, perhaps casually assembling a casserole from leftover strains of Lisa Loeb and Sade. And if you can imagine such a thing, then you've probably got a pretty good feel for Assad's latest contemporary Christian release, The House You're Building.” – www.The-Trades.com
“A gold nugget ... that is the best description I can think of for The House You’re Building. In a culture where oftentimes, the look of the Christianity ‘mask’ that people wear is more out front than their faith, Audrey Assad doesn't just refuse to wear the mask, she bares herself down to her core for us all to see. This amazing young woman has a lot to say and we're all the lucky recipients of it.” -www.christianmusic.about.com
“… The House You’re Building is quite Impressive.” – www.CCMmagazine.com
"Audrey Assad has created something beautiful with her debut album. Her emotive voice takes you to the high places and the deep spaces that are as unexpected as they are welcome." – C. E. Moore, www.TheChristianManifesto.com
“… her personality and lyricism seem a bit more believable than a lot of her peers in the contemporary genre that she falls under. It's one thing to have a technical skill, it's a whole other ballgame when you can sell it with artistic ability and a delicate honesty is portrayed." – www.ChristianMusicZine.com
"Since hearing 'Winter Snow' on the radio last Christmas, I've been eagerly awaiting new music from Audrey Assad. Her lovely voice and poetic lyrics bring something refreshing, honest, and beautiful to the sound of worship music. A beautiful start to a promising career... this talented singer/songwriter is one to watch." – Jen Rose, www.Jesusfreakhideout.com
Listeners are already responding to The House You’re Building lighting up twitter this morning with early praise for the new CD.
“Check out this great new artist, friend and guest on #theshelter. Gorgeous music!” - @jarsofclay
“Do not. I repeat DO NOT hesitate to purchase this album! Unless you don't like amazing...” - @mikedonehey (tenth avenue north)
“Just bought the new @audreyassad album and so should you”
“I love the CD! Everyone should go get this album”
“I just bought @audreyassad new album "The House You're Building". Do yourself a favor and get it now.”
Assad’s promo tour kicked off in Orlando and will be making stops in Jacksonville, FL, Tampa, FL, Grand Rapids, MI, Birmingham, AL, Baltimore, MD, Indianapolis, IN and others throughout the week visiting radio stations and talking about the debut project and radio single “For Love of You.” Also, Assad teamed up with fellow Sparrow Recording artist Britt Nicole for Disney’s Night of Joy preview parties with concerts taking place across Florida.
The standout track “Restless” has been selected as Audrey’s next single from The House You’re Building to hit AC and CHR radio in August. The song, co-written with Matt Maher, has already received early recognition from the worship community at this year’s re:create conference and has proven to be a fan favorite on the road.
Produced by Marshall Altman (Marc Broussard, Natasha Bedingfield, Bethany Dillon, Brooke Fraser), The House You’re Building features collaborations between Assad and everyone from Maher, LaRue and Ben Glover (Britt Nicole, Mandisa, Gloriana) to Marc Byrd (Hammock, Third Day, Kutless, Leeland) and Sarah Hart (Amy Grant, Adie Camp, Robbie Seay Band). Additional lyrical inspiration came from Assad’s love of literature and her memories of middle school; Audrey turned to favorite poems by Gerard Manley Hopkins and Francis Thompson, to the works of St. Augustine and C.S. Lewis, and to her own feelings of still not quite fitting in. Assad has already toured with industry elites Chris Tomlin, Matt Maher, Tenth Ave North and more. The 27 year-old, Phoenix-based singer songwriter also landed a duet with Chris Tomlin with “Winter Snow” on his Glory in the Highest Christmas album as well as sang with Brandon Heath on 2 songs from forthcoming Jars of Clay Shelter project.
5/12/2010 - Audrey Assad Ascends with Debut Album The House You're Building on Sparrow Records July 13
Anticipated newcomer Audrey Assad recently signed with Sparrow Records and will release her debut album The House You’re Building on July 13 with a digital EP titled For Love Of You released this week on May 11. Digital outlets have already welcomed Assad with the single “For Love Of You” receiving one of iTunes ® strongest debuts on the Christian/Gospel Singles chart.
Assad has already toured with industry elites Chris Tomlin, Matt Maher, Tenth Ave North and more. The 27 year-old, Phoenix-based singer songwriter also landed a duet with Chris Tomlin with “Winter Snow” on his Glory in the Highest Christmas album as well as sang with Brandon Heath on 2 songs from forthcoming Jars of Clay Shelter project.
"A lot of new artists come and go quickly in this business,” says Charlie Lowell of Jars of Clay. “Audrey Assad will not be one of those- she's a refreshing artist- a voice comforting and challenging together. Her melodic sensibilities are infectious, and she communicates God's caring and creative heart in a way that cuts through the day-to-day mess of life. It will be a privilege to share the stage with Audrey, and to watch her grow as an artist over the years."
Produced by Marshall Altman (Marc Broussard, Natasha Bedingfield, Bethany Dillon, Brooke Fraser), The House You’re Building features collaborations between Assad and everyone from Maher, LaRue and Ben Glover (Britt Nicole, Mandisa, Gloriana) to Marc Byrd (Hammock, Third Day, Kutless, Leeland) and Sarah Hart (Amy Grant, Adie Camp, Robbie Seay Band). Additional lyrical inspiration came from Assad’s love of literature and her memories of middle school; Audrey turned to favorite poems by Gerard Manley Hopkins and Francis Thompson, to the works of St. Augustine and C.S. Lewis, and to her own feelings of still not quite fitting in.
“The record is about faith. It’s about the cross and fear and pain and how God is carrying me even though sometimes it doesn’t feel like it,” Assad explains. “Marshall pulled things out of me emotionally that I don’t think I’d ever accessed, making me realize that every time I sing these songs, I have to channel my pain and walk through it… That’s been my journey the last few years, learning to believe that and walk in that acceptance of God choosing me. That’s what my journey will probably always be. The first reason I write songs is to preach to myself.”
The first single “For Love Of You” which was inspired by the Hopkins poem “As Kingfishers Catch Fire,” has already made a splash at radio with K-Love recently adding the single and Assad making an aggressive radio promo tour across the country talking about the single. Assad’s "For Love Of You" secured the highest debut on the national audience chart this week at No. 28 with the largest spin increase on the charts this week. Other notable tracks include the more personal “The House You’re Building,” the heartache-filled “Restless” and the metaphorical “Breaking Through.”
For the most up to date tour information, stay tuned to http://www.myspace.com/audreyassad.
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