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Christian Music - Reviews, News, Interviews

2003 Readers' Choice Christian Music Awards

  • Christianity Today Copyright Christianity Today International
  • 2003 1 Jan
2003 Readers' Choice Christian Music Awards

The readers have spoken! Or, perhaps more accurately, the street teams have spoken!

In our first annual Readers' Choice Christian Music Awards survey, we received 1,088 responses—including a sizeable number from Skillet fans, affectionately known as "Panheads." As a result, Skillet was a runaway winner as Band of the Year, garnering more than three times the votes of Third Day, which finished a distant second.

Skillet's "Savior" was voted Song of the Year, another reflection of the Panheads' ardor. In the Album of the Year category, Skillet fans also heavily voted for the band's last two CDs, Alien Youth and Collide, but alas, neither was eligible. (Alien Youth is more than two years old, while Collide doesn't release until November 18, 2003, too late for our November 2 cutoff.)

Rebecca St. James and Michael W. Smith took the top spots as Best Female Artist and Best Male Artist. No big surprise there. But there was a surprise for the Best Male runner-up, as Jeremy Camp easily topped Steven Curtis Chapman for second place. (We presume Camp's street team got busy too!)

Finally, in the New Artist Category, Seattle rock band Jonah33 took the top spot, with Anberlin finishing a close second.

Meanwhile, congratulations to Danita Bailey of Richmond, Virginia, who won 15 free CDs of her choice, courtesy of Her name was drawn from all those who filled out the survey.

Thank You To Everyone Who Voted In The Survey!

Best Group or Band

2. Third Day
3. Switchfoot
4. MercyMe
5. Relient K
6. Newsboys
7. Jars of Clay
8. Avalon
9 (tie). Audio Adrenaline
9 (tie). Plus One
11 (tie). Pillar
11 (tie). Point of Grace

Best Male Artist
Michael W. Smith

2. Jeremy Camp
3. Steven Curtis Chapman
4. Toby Mac
5. Bebo Norman
6. John Cooper (Skillet)
7. Mark Schultz
8. KJ-52
9. Chris Rice
10 (tie). Chris Tomlin
10 (tie). Derek Webb
12. Todd Agnew

Best Female Artist
Rebecca St. James

2. Stacie Orrico
3. Nichole Nordeman
4. Jennifer Knapp
5. Jaci Velasquez
6. Amy Grant
7. Rachael Lampa
8. Nicole C. Mullen
9. Joy Williams
10. Sandi Patty
11. Ginny Owens
12 (tie). Natalie Grant
12 (tie). CeCe Winans

Best New Artist
Jonah 33

2. Anberlin
3. Casting Crowns
4. Sanctus Real
5. Todd Agnew
6. Across the Sky
7. Warren Barfield
8. FM Static
9. Kristy Starling
10 (tie). Seven Places
10 (tie). Derek Webb
12. Big Dismal

Nominees for Best New Artist had to release their deubt CD between 10/1/2002 and 11/2/2003.Album of the Year
The Beautiful Letdown

2. Relient K, Two Lefts Don't Make a Right…but Three Do
3 (tie). Stacie Orrico, Stacie Orrico
3 (tie). Sandi Patty, Take Hold of Christ
5 (tie). MercyMe, Spoken For
5 (tie). Third Day, Offerings II: All I Have to Give
7 (tie). Newsboys, Adoration: The Worship Album
7 (tie). Pillar, Fireproof*
7 (tie). Derek Webb, She Must and Shall Go Free
10. Thousand Foot Krutch, Phenomenon
11. David Crowder Band, Illuminate
12. Paul Colman Trio, One

Nominees for Album of the Year had to be releases between 10/1/2002 and 11/2/2003. (* Pillar's Fireproof orginally released before 10/1/02, but it was remixed and re-released in 2003 on a new label, making it eligible.)

Song of the Year

2. Switchfoot, "Meant to Live"
3. MercyMe, "I Can Only Imagine"
4. MercyMe, "Word of God Speak"
5. Jeremy Camp, "I Still Believe"
6. Sandi Patty, "Alleluia"
7 (tie). Newsboys, "He Reigns"
7 (tie). Stacie Orrico, "(There's Gotta Be) More to Life"
9. Paul Colman Trio, "Solution"
10 (tie). Kutless, "Run"
10 (tie). Nichole Nordeman, "Holy"
12 (tie). Casting Crowns, "If We Are the Body"
12 (tie). MercyMe, "Spoken For"

Nominees for Song of the Year had to be releases between 10/1/2002 and 11/2/2003.

How did the results compare with the editors' picks? Read our list of The Best Christian Albums of 2003 to find out.