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Music News
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Cultural News
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18 June 2007

Veteran recording artist, performer and worship leader Michael W. Smith was honored recently by the Recording Academy at the “GRAMMY Salute To Gospel Music” event at the Lincoln Theater in Washington, DC., Friday, June 8. Smith, along with The Clark Sisters and Dr. Bobby Jones, was presented with the Recording Academy President’s Merit Award which recognizes the contributions that key individuals have made in the music industry and the impact their efforts have had on music and the business of music.

The GRAMMY Salute To Gospel Music event recognizes those who have made significant contributions to gospel music, while supporting the history and importance of the genre. Last weeks event featured performances by four-time GRAMMY winner Yolanda Adams, soulful gospel singer Vanessa Bell Armstrong, award-winning gospel singer Byron Cage, honorees The Clark Sisters, contemporary Christian music singer Crystal Lewis, two-time GRAMMY winner Donnie McClurkin, contemporary gospel singer Kierra “Kiki” Sheard, gospel composer/pianist/arranger Richard Smallwood, honoree Michael W. Smith and four-time GRAMMY winner BeBe Winans. Performances were under the leadership of award-winning musical director Donald Lawrence.

During Smith’s portion of the evening, Crystal Lewis performed a moving version of “Breathe” before a very interactive crowd. Donnie McClurkin then took stage and sang, “Place in this World” followed by the Michael W. Smith classic, “Friends.” Smith humbly accepted the Recording Academy President’s Merit Award and then sang, “Above All” before an audience on its feet.

About NARAS Established in 1957, the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences, Inc., also known as The Recording Academy, is an organization of musicians, producers, engineers and recording professionals that is dedicated to improving the cultural condition and quality of life for music and its makers. Internationally known for the GRAMMY Awards, The Recording Academy is responsible for groundbreaking professional development, cultural enrichment, advocacy, education and human services programs - including the creation of the national public education campaign What's The Download® (WhatsTheDownload.com®). For more information about The Academy, please visit www.grammy.com.

About Michael W. Smith Over his 24-year career as a recording artist, Michael W. Smith has amassed an impressive catalog of achievements. His 19 albums have garnered multiple honors including an American Music Award, 3 GRAMMY Awards and 40 Gospel Music Association Dove Awards. In addition, he holds 16 Gold and 5 Platinum albums, 31 #1 radio hits, and has been named one of People Magazine’s Most Beautiful People. In addition, Smith has scored film projects and written 11 books. His tours consistently rank among the best attended in the country and he has performed to capacity crowds throughout the world. Constantly giving back to the community, one of his current projects is Rocketown -- a nightclub for teens in his hometown of Nashville, Tenn. -- serves as safe place for young people to enjoy music and for artists to be discovered. He is married to Debbie Smith and they are the proud parents of five children. Stand, Michael’s 19th album, released November 7, 2006.

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