BMI honors most-played Southern Gospel songs

Several days ago, BMI held a ceremony to honor the most-played Christian songs in their catalog this year. Though BMI is one of three performing rights organizations (ASCAP and SESAC are the other two), it represents somewhere in the neighborhood of 2/3 of Southern Gospel top ten radio singles. (So it’s not quite an apples-to-apples comparison to line this up next to a Singing News end-of-year summary.) Nevertheless, five Southern Gospel songs were among the twenty-five honored:

  • I Thirst (Ernie Haase & Signature Sound), written by Beverly Lowry (Homeward Bound Music)
  • I’m Going Home With Jesus (credited here to The Worship Crew, interestingly), written by Carroll McGruder (Best of Zion Music)
  • Love Came Calling (Triumphant Quartet), written by Wayne Haun and Joel Lindsey (Hefton Hill Music, PsalmSinger Music, Universal Music-Brentwood Benson Songs)
  • Saved By Grace (Triumphant Quartet), written by Carroll McGruder (Rex Nelon Music Company)
  • Sometimes I Cry (Jason Crabb), written by Gerald Crabb (Christian Taylor Music, Gerald Crabb’s Songs)

Interestingly, Carroll McGruder, with two songs on the list, picked up the BMI Christian Songwriter of the Year award—for decades-old covers. Add a Cathedrals cover (“I Thirst”) to the list, and only two of the five Southern Gospel honorees are new songs.


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4 Letters to the Editor

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  1. I can’t believe it is the worship crew instead of the Nelons. I thought for sure the Nelons would go to #1 on Singing News.

    • That also puzzled me; I hadn’t even heard of the Worship Crew rendition until this point.

  2. Also interesting that 2 of the five songs are performed by Triumphant. I guess it’s no fluke that they’re 4 years in a row quartet of the year.

    • Agreed. Another interesting aspect of all of this to me each year is that BMI aims to track airplay on all stations, not just the selection of stations that chart for the Singing News. It’s always interesting to compare the two and see how apples-to-apples it is. In this case, it actually does seem relatively comparable!