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CANTON JUNCTION’S CASEY RIVERS WELCOMES TWINS

Written by Staff on February 1, 2019 – 1:30 pm -

Casey (left) and Doni Rivers with twins Vivienne and Pierce.

Casey (left) and Doni Rivers with twins Vivienne and Pierce.

NASHVILLE, Tenn.—Casey Rivers, lead vocalist for Dove Award-winning Difference Media artist Canton Junction, and his wife Doni, announce the birth of daughter Vivienne Ruth Rivers and son Pierce Haig Rivers on January 6. Vivienne weighed 5 pounds, 7 ounces, while Pierce tipped the scales at 6 pounds, 7 ounces. The twins join elder siblings Audra, Stellan, Clara (Mae Mae) and Jude at the Rivers’ home in Whitehouse, Texas.
 

Canton Junction

Canton Junction

“For Doni and I, 2018 was a tough and emotional year,” said Casey Rivers. “Last year, we experienced not one but two miscarriages. We trusted that God is still God and He is good on the hills and in the valleys. James 1:17 says, ‘Every good and perfect gift is from above,’ and this year on January 6, we received our good and perfect gifts from above!” 
 

(l-r) Canton Junction's Gordon Mote, Matt Hagee, Tim Duncan and Casey Rivers

(l-r) Canton Junction lineup: Gordon Mote, Matt Hagee, Tim Duncan and Casey Rivers

Since their 2012 debut, Canton Junction has become one of Southern Gospel’s most sought-after groups. The self-titled Canton Junction featured four #1 singles, garnered a GMA Dove Award for Southern Gospel Album of the Year, and earned the group a Singing News Fan Award for Favorite Southern Gospel New Traditional Quartet. Their follow-up recording, Every Hallelujah, debuted at #1 on Nielsen SoundScan’s Southern Gospel Overall Chart and featured the single “Weep No More,” from the hit box office film Four Blood Moons.Their 2016 holiday offering, A Canton Christmas, garnered rave reviews and airplay on country radio stations across the country. A highly anticipated new recording is slated for release this year.
 
Follow Casey Rivers on Twitterand Facebook and connect with Canton Junction on Twitter and Facebook. For further information, visit turningpointpr.com or differencemedia.org.

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Canton Junction: Changing faces, moving forward

Written by Staff on October 6, 2015 – 10:19 am -

Canton Junction For The Cover

New faces put their stamp on a new project as Canton Junction rolls out Every Hallelujah

 

Canton Junction is no longer in the infancy stages of its ministry. However, as the group releases its third project, excitement abounds.

Canton Junction 3“It’s always kind of been – not overwhelming – but you stand in awe of the way that God makes His plans,” Matt Hagee, the group’s tenor singer, says. “Aaron (Crabb), Michael (Sykes) and I needed to get something done for Sunday (morning service at San Antonio’s Cornerstone Church in 2011). We went about that. We were able to start working with Tim Duncan, and he’s an incredible talent.

“The group now has a brand-new lineup. It’s a group of diverse singers. I’m very excited for folks to hear Canton Junction on our new project. I feel that this is going to be an opportunity to hear a real Canton Junction brand.”

Duncan and Hagee are the only current group members who were a part of Canton Junction’s earlier projects, a self-titled debut project (which won a Gospel Music Association Dove Award for Southern Gospel Album of the Year) and Live at Cornerstone.

Ryan Seaton

Ryan Seaton

“We’re a Gospel quartet, but this project is a little different,” Duncan says. “We have a great variety. Garry (Jones, the producer) did a good job of getting material, some great material. He has a list of go-to songwriters, and most of the songs on this project are deep subjects. They get to me. I say, ‘geez, I’ve been there.’ Sometimes, you think, ‘does God ever hear my prayer?’ The lyrics run deep.

“We have a great project. We have a good variety. We have a Southern Gospel project, quartet songs, fun songs and the deep songs that create a moment. I’m so excited about the type songs we’re doing. I say this about every project I’ve sang on, but I think it’s the best project I’ve ever sung on.”

Hagee admits that the project – which is slated for an August 7th release – has a different sound than the group’s earlier work.

Matthew Hagee

Matthew Hagee

“It’s very different,” Hagee explains. “The first project was really a great deal of stuff. The content we picked were songs we had enjoyed all of our lives. It’s stuff we said, ‘oh, it’d be fun to sing this.’ You do indeed have a lot of fun. You sing in a fashion that reflects your memories.

“In this new project, we captured a lot of new content. It’s from current writers who have written new material. You have to figure out, ‘how do I want to communicate this?’ Ryan (Seaton) has a huge voice, and yet, it’s so capable of singing so many different styles. Casey (Rivers) brings a modern Country and Contemporary sound to it. In one turn, we can be in a Praise-and-Worship vein. Then, the next can be in a Black Gospel style. All of it feels good.”

Casey Rivers

Casey Rivers

Jones had a heavy hand in the project’s variety. Duncan and Jones were part of the Signature Sound Quartet when it formed back in 2002. “It’s great,” Duncan says of working with Jones. “He’s a good arranger and a good producer. That goes without saying. He was with Gold City for 12 or 13 years, and look at all of the great songs they had.

“He’s just a good guy. He has a good heart. He’s easy to work with in the studio. He gets stuff out of you that you don’t think you can do, and he’s patient with you.”

Rivers and Seaton – who are in their first project as members of Canton Junction – echo Duncan’s feelings. They officially joined in the group in late January.

“This record, I really think there’s something on here for everyone,” Seaton explains. “There are Worship tunes. There’s your straightforward Southern Gospel. There’s a little bit of Country. There’s a little bit of Pop. There’s a wide variety of music on this album. For me, that’s what makes it fun. That’s something I’ve never been a part of. The album is going to be killer. It has some great tunes.

Tim Duncan

Tim Duncan

“Working with Garry, I’ve never been as comfortable in the studio as I’ve been with this project and working with him. He is able to create and pull some things from people who probably didn’t believe they could do certain things. When his name is on the album, it’s going to be good. It was nice to finally get to work with him in the studio.”

Rivers adds, “Every Hallelujah has a good mix of songs from different backgrounds. Everybody compliments each other in this group. It’s been really cool to see it all unfold. We all have common ground. It’s been a God thing for sure. God has opened a really a great door for all of us.”

Jones actually had a direct hand in Rivers’ door swinging open.

“I received a message via Facebook from Garry Jones,” Rivers remembers. “He said he liked what I was doing, and he liked my voice. We had a good phone conversation a week before Christmas. Then, I went to San Antonio. I talked to Garry, and we played in the studio a little bit.”

Seaton and Duncan were also a part of Ernie Haase and Signature Sound at the same time, and that connection led to Seaton’s arrival.

Canton Junction at NQC 2015

Canton Junction at NQC 2015

“Me and Tim have always stayed in contact through the years,” Seaton points out. “I always told him since he started with Canton Junction, ‘man, if there’s ever a position open, let me know.’ He saw the opportunity. He knew the group was going to be going through some changes, and he kind of helped me get in to get an audition.

“I filled in for Aaron (Crabb, the group’s original lead singer) in November and December. That kind of started the whole process.”

The compilation of vocalists brings diverse sounds.

“Casey, first off, is just a great human being,” Hagee explains. “He’s a husband and a father and very much about his family. He is a humble talent. It’s always a delight to find somebody who is talented and not know how talented they are. Casey is that. Casey has achieved success in Country music as a vocalist. Because of his diverse career, he brings all of those elements to add a lot to a quartet that you might not consider.

Canton Junction Album Cover“We’re given the opportunity to see what the song requires to be performed at the best level. Because of the diverse range that Ryan has and the style that Casey has, we can sing several different lineups. Ryan can take a lead, and Casey and I can move around on harmonies. Any time you have that kind of diversity, it’s nice, and I’ve always said that bass singers make anything better, especially good bass singers. In my opinion, there’s not a platform that has a bass singer on it any better than Tim. He has all the depth, but his tone is really quality. I’m really thrilled with how things have come together. Any time you go through change and a transition, you wonder, ‘are we ever going to be able to capture what we had?’ It’s kind of one of those moments where you look back and say, ‘right place, right time … God has His hand in it all.’”

Rivers is the lead singer, and Seaton serves as the baritone. However, that versatility that Hagee refers to essentially nullifies those labels in Rivers’ mind.

“I tell people, ‘Ryan Seaton is a lead singer,’” Rivers – who is the youngest member of the group at age 35 – says. “It’s kind of a cool thing to have in your arsenal. I’m labeled as a lead singer. He’s labeled as a baritone, but we’re both able to handle the baritone part.”

Duncan adds, “We have a good variety with what we’ve got. (Casey) has a little country flair. He’s a just a great vocalist and a great guy all the way around. He has a good heart. A good heart is just as important as who you are vocally.”

Early reactions have been favorable. In fact, the first single – “Weep No More” – has already been released to radio.

“The response has been overwhelming,” the 35-year-old Seaton points out. “Everybody seems excited. Everybody likes the sound. Casey can take the lead. I can take a lead. It’s a good place to be when you have a group that can do that.

“The people seem to open up. It’s been neat to see all of the comments. It’s been great.”

Hagee adds, “I don’t know anybody who likes Southern Gospel who didn’t hope that one day they could sing with a great quartet. I jokingly say that Canton Junction is where good things come together. We’ve found something that fits.”

Rivers was previously a part of the trio Beyond the Ashes, from 2009-12. However, prior to that time, he was immersed in Country Music, finishing as the runner-up during season four of Nashville Star.

“I like all kinds of music,” Rivers explains. “I grew up cutting my teeth on the old country, your Hank (Williams), Sr. Some of that stuff can mesh with Southern Gospel. It was that and Elvis Presley. I was a young guy with an old spirit and a feel for older stuff, but I always knew that I had a heart for ministry. I never wanted to do the beer-drinking songs. I never wanted to sing in the taverns. I stuck to doing a lot of festivals and fairs, a lot of the oprys around Oklahoma and Texas. I always felt that in my set that I could break it down and speak to some people who might not ever step foot in church and minister to them right there. It’s just a matter of being available and listening to God’s voice.

Canton Junction 4“That voice hit me hard back in 2009. I told my wife one day, ‘if I had a choice to lay Country music down and go full time in Christian music, I’d lay it down right now.’ Then, I had a woman in my church who said, ‘I don’t know if your ears have been burning, but I have a friend who is looking for a lead singer in his group, Beyond the Ashes.’ I had just done my first Country project, but I felt that’s where I needed to be full time. I got into a conversation with a friend at church, and I had an opportunity to meet Anthony Facello (the founder of Beyond the Ashes). I went through an interview process and a trial period. The rest of history.” Rivers has performed as a soloist since departing Beyond the Ashes.

Despite his country roots, Rivers also possesses a level of soul in his vocalization, which may have been cultivated during his three-year stint with Facello’s dynamic vocal trio. “The soulful part is something that has developed through the years,” Rivers says. “There was never that opportunity to really use that part of my voice. Maybe I didn’t know I had that when I was pursuing Country Music. Even at a young age, it was from Hank Sr. to Elvis Presley. I was shaking my leg as a kid and doing some blue suede shoes.

“A lot of the soulfulness came since 2009 when I joined Beyond the Ashes. I was introduced to some material and some ways of singing to where I really had to push myself. I had to really listen to blend. Being with Beyond the Ashes and through the years getting to hear the Crabb Family … Jason, Aaron and Adam … once I started listening to those songs and listening to some of their tracks, I was like, ‘I like singing these songs.’ They’re in their own league though.”

While the group has quickly cultivated its blend on stage, Rivers points out that it has been a great blend off stage as well. “These guys are awesome,” Rivers emphasizes. “I’m very comfortable around them. We all share common things. Ryan is the only one who will not wear cowboy boots. He’ll tell you that in a heartbeat.

“We’re all family men. When you can be around people where you have things in common with … I could not ask for a better bunch of guys to minister with and share God’s love with.”

The limited tour schedule is another drastic difference for the quartet. “It’s definitely different than anything I’ve ever been involved in,” Seaton points out. “From the musical aspect to the travel aspect … doing this for almost 14 years now and traveling the roads 200 times a year … my girls are nine and eight (years old) now. I’ve been looking for something like this that wasn’t as demanding but still allowed me to do what God has called me to do … but not taking me away from the family every weekend. It’s the biggest blessing to date.

“Everything has been a blessing, from the Melody Boys working with Gerald Williams and Mike Franklin, who ran the Melody Boys. Getting to go with Signature Sound was a huge platform. To get on the Gaither stage and have his (Bill Gaither’s) blessing and stamp of approval, that was a huge blessing. For someone who didn’t go to school for music and never had music lessons, it’s been great. We’re all likeminded and family men. I couldn’t ask for anything better.”

Duncan adds, “I love it. I did have my share of leaving every Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday. I don’t miss traveling so much. I have a lot of down time. I have a lot of quality time that I can spend at home. Yet, I get to go out and sing once in a while. I love the down time. I love to be able to fish more and hang out with my son and be with my wife. It’s great.”

The minimal appearances are beneficial as the group members are spread out, with Hagee living in San Antonio. Rivers is a resident of Flint, Texas. Duncan resides in Gallatin, Tenn., and Seaton is the furthest distance away from the group’s home base as he’s planted in Evansville, Ind.

The group performs at many of the traveling appearances of pastor John Hagee, who is the father of Matt Hagee and the senior pastor of Cornerstone Church. The quartet also performs there at Cornerstone on a semi-regular basis. Matt Hagee previously sang with his father and sisters as part of the Hagee Family.

Canton Junction performed at Bill Gaither’s Family Fest in the Smokies, which was held in late May.

“It is a different dynamic,” Rivers says. “A lot of guys gel because they’re all out on the road. With these guys, it takes a different type of preparation. We might be away from each other for a month or a month and a half. It takes us all going home and doing our homework. When it’s time to show up and do what we have to do, we just have to be ready, so it’s a different dynamic.”

The group members feel that one of the major benefits of the limited touring involves keeping the energy level high and the material fresh.

“I know what it is to be burnt out,” Duncan explains. “You’ve been gone so long, and so many times, you’d rather be home.

“This is great. When we do walk on stage, we’re fresh, because we’ve been off several days or a couple of weeks.”

Seaton adds, “One of the toughest things about traveling in a full-time scale is keeping it fresh. You live with your guys you travel with. That can get challenging at times. With this, it’s an exciting feeling every time we get together. It may have been two weeks since we’ve seen each other or sang together. There’s not that meeting the bus, putting your stuff on the bus, going to sleep and waking up in a different city. It’s very easy-going. The majority of our dates are done at Cornerstone Church there in San Antonio. The church members all love it. You get to sing to a built-in crowd. It tickles everybody. It’s a fun situation.”

The group has two mini-tours coming up this fall, stints in which the quartet will travel for three consecutive dates on two different weekends (a total of 11 appearances from August into October). Ivan Parker, Jason Crabb and the Isaacs will also be among the performers during some of those dates.

“I’m looking forward to those dates,” Duncan says. “We’re fresh. I don’t think we will ever reach that point where we will be burnt out. The zeal, desire and morale will always be up, because we don’t travel so much.”

Hagee isn’t ruling out an increased tour schedule in the future. “We have the opportunity to be involved in other areas of media, like television and internet television,” Hagee says. “We want to get our music out.

“We’re going to work those dates (this fall) and see how they go. If opportunities to grow in that area come, we’ll certainly look into it.”

While Matt Hagee serves as the executive pastor at Cornerstone Church, the rest of the group has a varied list of extra-curricular activities.

Duncan – who was formerly a bricklayer before delving full time into Southern Gospel Music – still occasionally does some bricklaying.

Rivers still makes some solo appearances and also occasionally fills in for other groups, but Seaton arguably has the most unique – and most fun – hobby.

“My number one priority is Canton Junction,” Seaton points out. “We provide for our families from Canton Junction, but I actually own HighSide Hobbies and Raceway. It’s an RC (radio-controlled) hobby shop with an indoor, dirt oval track. We race RC cars. We hold weekly races. We’ve had a number of weekly races. We’ve had people from North Dakota, Ohio and Tennessee. Other than going to cheer practice and dance practice (with my daughters), that’s what I do.

“It started out as a hobby, and the opportunity presented for me to take over. I raced as a customer. I became friends with the owner. He was looking to get out of owning the business, so I took that over.”

Look for the new Canton Junction faces and project online.

By Craig Harris

First published by SGN Scoops August 2015.

For more artist features and information, look for the newest SGN Scoops digital magazine on the SGN Scoops website.


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Canton Junction and Cornerstone Care for Texas Flood Victims

Written by Staff on May 29, 2015 – 2:14 pm -

CGDGwz9UsAA6bozRececntly, Canton Junction alerted us to how Cornerstone church was helping to care for the victims of the devastating floods in Texas. Their twitter post just said, “Hey friends this is an opportunity to be the hands and feet of Jesus. Please join us

Canton Junction

Canton Junction

in helping Victims…” Their church, Cornerstone in San Antonio, is assisting victims by collecting donations and non-perishable items to distribute to those in need.

Canton Junction is made up of: Tim Duncan, Matthew Hagee, Casey Rivers and Ryan Seaton. Matt Hagee is the Executive Pastor at Cornerstone Church.

You can help too! Please visit the Cornerstone link for more on how you can help those whose lives have been washed away.

 

For more information on Canton Junction, visit their website.

 

Courtesy www.ibtimes.com

Courtesy www.ibtimes.com

 

 

 


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THE HAGEES’ CHRISTMAS HERALDS RENOWNED GROUP’S HOLIDAY DEBUT

Written by SGN Scoops on November 26, 2013 – 5:21 pm -

imageNASHVILLE, Tenn.—Christmas, the holiday debut from one of Gospel music’s most renowned family groups, The Hagees, is now available from Difference Media/Capitol Christian Distribution.

Produced by Michael Sykes (Oak Ridge Boys, Gaither Vocal Band) and Aaron Crabb (Aaron & Amanda Crabb, Canton Junction), Christmas is comprised of 13 sacred, nostalgic and original selections, including “Silent Night,” “O Little Town of Bethlehem,” “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas,” and “The Christmas Song,” among others.

The project’s debut single, “Glory To God,” is an original track penned by Pastor Matthew Hagee and Aaron Wilburn. Inspired by the angels’ proclamation of the birth of Christ to the shepherds, the song represents a timeless theme The Hagees reflect throughout the album.

“The first Christmas morning in Bethlehem’s manger was the birth of Hope itself for a world enslaved by the power of sin,” says Pastor Matthew Hagee. “The birth of Jesus Christ brought spiritual and civil liberty to all the world.”

A highlight of Christmas is The Hagees’ rendition of the timeless classic “O Holy Night,” featuring group founder and family patriarch Pastor John Hagee. “Having the opportunity to sing anything with him becomes a moment, because my father grew up singing with his parents,” adds Pastor Matthew Hagee.

Christmas also includes the modern favorite “A Baby Changes Everything,” sung by Sandy Parker. “I was actually pregnant and nobody knew but my husband and me,” Parker shares of her first performance of the song several years ago. “It was super emotional for me, and as a result, when I sang it, I had that breaking moment where you don’t know if you’re singing or crying.”

In promotion of Christmas, Pastor John Hagee will be featured Thanksgiving Day on “The Mike Huckabee Show,” broadcast on more than 200 radio stations in 44 states via Cumulus Media Networks. Hagee’s interview is slated to air at approximately 2:30 pm ET.

Comprised of Pastor John Hagee, his son Pastor Matthew Hagee, and daughters Sandy Parker and Tina Ketterling, The Hagees’ storied Southern Gospel career has spanned more than two decades, boasting multiple acclaimed recordings and appearances around the globe.

A world-renowned evangelist and best-selling author, Pastor John Hagee is founder and senior pastor of Cornerstone Church in San Antonio, Texas. A non-denominational evangelical church with more than 20,000 active members, Cornerstone is home to John Hagee Ministries, which telecasts Pastor Hagee’s radio and television teachings throughout America and to 245 countries around the globe. The ministry also operates GETV, a 24/7 online television and video on-demand broadcast of sermons and original programming (getv.org).

 

Difference Media, a division of Cornerstone Church, features some of the leading names in Gospel music, including Aaron & Amanda Crabb, Canton Junction, Matthew Hagee, Tim Duncan, The Cornerstone Sanctuary Choir, John Hagee and The Hagees.

 

For further information on The Hagees, visitdifferencemedia.org or turningpointpr.com.

 


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CANTON JUNCTION’S ‘BACK ON MY FEET AGAIN’ TO BENEFIT THE DREAM CENTER

Written by SGN Scoops on November 6, 2013 – 2:34 pm -

NEWCantonJunction (1)NASHVILLE, Tenn.—Dove Award-winning Difference Media artist Canton Junction will donate proceeds from their recording, “Back On My Feet Again,” to The Dream Center, a multi-faceted urban ministry impacting the people of Los Angeles. The group’s music video of the song will premiere on GodTube.com Thursday, November 7, and will be viewable at JHM.org and DreamCenter.org beginning November 8. Featured on Canton Junction’s full-length CD and DVD, Show Me Your Way, “Back On My Feet Again” is currently available at iTunes.com.

“We wanted to use ‘Back On My Feet Again’ to draw attention to the great work of The Dream Center,” said Pastor Matthew Hagee of Canton Junction. “The message of restoration and hope is what The Dream Center is working on 24 hours a day, seven days a week—helping one life at a time to get back on their feet again.”

“This song has ministered to so many of our people to refuse to stay down and choose to embrace second chances,” said Pastor Matthew Barnett, founder of The Dream Center. Established in 1994, The Dream Center is a volunteer driven organization that finds and fills the needs of over 50,000 individuals and families each month. The Center provides mobile hunger relief and medical programs, residential rehabilitation programs for teens and adults, a shelter for victims of human trafficking, transitional housing for homeless families, foster care intervention programs, job skills training, life skills counseling, basic education, Bible studies and more.

Comprised of GRAMMY®-nominated singer/songwriter Aaron Crabb; award-winning bass vocalist Tim Duncan; singer, pastor and author Matthew Hagee; and acclaimed vocalist Shane McConnell, the members of Canton Junction have collectively garnered numerous Dove Awards and multiple GRAMMY® nominations, among other accolades and honors.

Difference Media is a division of Cornerstone Church, founded and pastored by John Hagee. The label features some of the leading names in Southern Gospel music, including Aaron & Amanda Crabb, Canton Junction, Matthew Hagee, Tim Duncan, The Cornerstone Sanctuary Choir, John Hagee and The Hagees. A non-denominational evangelical church with more than 20,000 active members, Cornerstone Church is home to John Hagee Ministries, which telecasts Pastor Hagee’s radio and television teachings throughout America and to more than 190 countries around the globe. The ministry also operates GETV, a 24/7 online television and video on-demand broadcast of sermons and original programming, as well as music videos and performances by Difference Media artists (getv.org).

For further information, visit differencemedia.org or turningpointpr.com. Follow Canton Junction on Twitter @cantonjunction.


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CANTON JUNCTION’S SHOW ME YOUR WAY BOWS JUNE 4

Written by SGN Scoops on May 31, 2013 – 1:35 pm -

NASHVILLE, Tenn.—One of Southern Gospel’s leading new talents, Difference Media quartet Canton Junction is set to bowShow Me Your Way June 4. Executive produced by Matthew Hagee and produced by Aaron Crabb, Matthew Hagee and Michael Sykes, the project features 14 selections.

Show Me Your Way is highlighted by the never-before released bonus tracks “Just a Little Talk with Jesus/Jesus on the Main Line Medley (Live),” “In God We Still Trust (Live)” and “Back On My Feet Again.” The album also features 11 songs from Canton Junction’s 2012 self-titled debut, including “Hold On,” which reached #1 on The Christian Voice singles chart and #2 on The Singing Newschart earlier this year, and “The Son Shines Down On Me.”

In addition to Show Me Your WayCanton Junction Live at Cornerstone (DVD) will also be available June 4. Recorded at San Antonio’s Cornerstone Church, the DVD features live renditions of such group favorites as  “Show Me Your Way” and “Sweeter as the Days Go By,” as well as bonus performances of “In God We Still Trust” and a roundabout piano medley of “Just a Little Talk with Jesus/Jesus on the Main Line.”

Comprised of GRAMMY®-nominated singer/songwriter Aaron Crabb; award-winning bass vocalist Tim Duncan; singer, pastor and author Matthew Hagee; and acclaimed vocalist Shane McConnell, the members of Canton Junction have collectively garnered numerous Gospel Music Association Dove Awards and multiple GRAMMY® nominations, among other accolades and honors.

Difference Media is a division of Cornerstone Church, founded and pastored by John Hagee. The label features some of the leading names in Southern Gospel music, including Aaron & Amanda Crabb, Canton Junction, Matthew Hagee, Tim Duncan, The Cornerstone Sanctuary Choir, John Hagee and The Hagees. A non-denominational evangelical church with more than 20,000 active members, Cornerstone Church is home to John Hagee Ministries, which telecasts Pastor Hagee’s radio and television teachings throughout America and to more than 190 countries around the globe. The ministry also operates GETV, a 24/7 online television and video on-demand broadcast of sermons and original programming, as well as music videos and performances by Difference Media artists (www.getv.org).

Show Me Your Way and Canton Junction Live at Cornerstone (DVD) are distributed by Capitol Christian Distribution.

For further information on Canton Junction, visit www.differencemedia.org orwww.turningpointpr.com.


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CANTON JUNCTION ANNOUNCES ADDITION OF SHANE MCCONNELL TO ACCLAIMED LINE-UP

Written by SGN Scoops on March 26, 2013 – 1:58 pm -

NASHVILLE, Tenn.—Difference Media recording artist Canton Junction announces the addition of celebrated vocalist Shane NEWCantonJunctionMcConnell to its acclaimed lineup. McConnell joins Matthew Hagee, Aaron Crabb and Tim Duncan, to round out the popular quartet.

“Shane is a remarkably talented and incredibly gracious individual, who greatly complements the idea that Canton Junction is where good things come together,” said Matthew Hagee, who also serves as executive pastor, Cornerstone Church. “We are extremely blessed to have him and look forward to what the future holds for Canton Junction.”

“I’ve enjoyed all the opportunities I’ve had in the studio through the years, but now as a member of Canton Junction, I’m especially looking forward to being able to interact with live audiences,” McConnell said. “I’ve always loved quartet harmonies, but I also have a heart for praise & worship, so Canton Junction seems like a great home for me. I believe it’s going to be a fun journey!”

McConnell has been a highly sought after Nashville studio vocalist since 1998, having performed on recordings by Garth Brooks, Wynonna, Kenny Rogers, Steve Green, Sandi Patty, Andy Griffith and Bill Gaither, among countless others. In addition, his voice has been heard on recordings for Walt Disney World and SeaWorld. Since 2006 he has been part of the Gaither Homecoming family, performing on Homecoming videos, live events and studio projects.

Since the release of its self-titled debut last year, Canton Junction has quickly become one of the leading groups in southern gospel music. The recording features the #1 single, “Hold On,” and the current single, “The Son Shines Down On Me.”

Difference Media is a division of Cornerstone Church, founded and pastored by John Hagee. The label features some of the leading names in Southern Gospel music, including Aaron & Amanda Crabb, Canton Junction, Matthew Hagee, Tim Duncan, The Cornerstone Sanctuary Choir, John Hagee and The Hagees. A non-denominational evangelical church with more than 20,000 active members, Cornerstone Church is home to John Hagee Ministries, which telecasts Pastor Hagee’s radio and television teachings throughout America and to 245 countries around the globe. The ministry also operates GETV, a 24/7 online television and video on-demand broadcast of sermons and original programming, as well as music videos and performances by Difference Media artists (www.getv.org).

For further information on Canton Junction or other Difference Media artists, visit www.differencemedia.org or www.turningpointpr.com.

Photo: (l-r) Canton Junction’s Shane McConnell, Aaron Crabb,
Matthew Hagee and Tim Duncan


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Canton Junction: A Faithful Journey!

Written by SGN Scoops on February 13, 2013 – 8:25 pm -

“A Faithful Journey”

Canton Junction

By Jennifer Campbell, 

(SGNScoops Magazine, November 2012)

 

canton junctionHave you ever encountered a crossroads in life?  Sometimes in life, we may not plan out the course our lives will take.  But God knows the path that we will travel down along life’s journey, and He knows where these roads will intersect.  One Sunday morning, four individuals joined their voices in song, unaware of the harmony that would bring them together as a group.  Matthew Hagee, Aaron Crabb, Michael Sykes, and Tim Duncan came to a crossroads.  Instead of going four separate directions, they faithfully followed God’s footsteps.  And His footsteps traveled down the road to Canton Junction.

Canton Junction was born from a special musical performance at Cornerstone Church in San Antonio, Texas.  As the group began to sing, it became clear that the harmony within the group, both literally and figuratively, was a rare find.  The group’s name, Canton Junction, means “the crossroads of different subjects or regions into one gathering point.”  On the day they came together to sing in one accord, that was their gathering point.  The different regions where they live and diverse musical backgrounds they come from represent the crossroads of different subjects.  Yet, no matter how different they may be, they sing for one reason and one reason alone: to spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

While they are a quartet, Canton Junction represents so much more than four-part harmony.  They have dozens of GMA Dove Awards, Grammy nominations, and other accolades between them.  In addition, they have over 85 years of experience between them.  Their styles of music range from traditional hymns to the Eagles and Southern Gospel to big band.  Needless to say, there is something for everyone.  And the best part of all is that every song is sung for the sole purpose of sharing God’s grace with everyone who hears them.

For over a decade, the lead singer of Canton Junction, Aaron Crabb, traveled with the renowned group The Crabb Family.  During this chapter in his musical journey, he sang and produced 19 number one gospel songs.  This Kentucky-born individual has performed at Carnegie Hall, the Grand Ole Opry, and many other prestigious locations.  Yet all the while, he simply loves the Lord, his family, and singing.  Aaron holds a firm belief that God can use music to heal hearts and that the Truth gets us through the many obstacles that we may encounter.

Canton Junction is proud to have award-winning bass singer, Tim Duncan, on board with them.  An original member of Ernie Haase and Signature Sound, Tim describes himself as a “quartet man.”  He received the Singing News Fan Award for Best Bass in 2006.  Tim said his earliest memories of music were of his dad buying quartet records.  It was in these moments that he fell in love with the thrill of hearing long endings, the tenor soaring, and the bass booming.  Bringing to the table 16 years of full-time singing experience, along with his involvement with Billboard-topping albums and DVDs, he still remains down to earth.  For Tim, it’s not about the awards and honors, but instead, it’s about the reason he sings: he loves to make people happy by singing the best music in the world – music that communicates the Best News ever.

Continuing a six-generation legacy of ministry, Matthew Hagee sings tenor for Canton Junction.  Matthew grew up singing around the piano with his family.  He serves as Executive Pastor of Cornerstone Church, alongside his father, John Hagee, Founding Pastor.  Having graduated from Oral Roberts University School of Business, Matthew is also a gifted speaker and author, in addition to being an accomplished vocalist.  He has authored two books, “Shaken, Not Shattered” and “Response-Able.”  When he is not on stage, he lives a truly Texan lifestyle, trading horses and cattle in his spare time.

The group’s baritone is no stranger to gospel music, having enjoyed a long and successful run in Nashville as a producer, songwriter, and business owner.  Michael Sykes has produced award-winning albums for artists such as the Gaither Vocal Band, Russ Taff, The Martins, Jeff and Sheri Easter, and The Oak Ridge Boys.  His love for harmony, along with his tenure with Ponder, Sykes, & Wright, makes him a natural group vocalist.  Although Michael has received multiple GMA Dove Awards for producing and songwriting, he is a country boy at heart who has a gift for making music.

I had the opportunity to interview Matthew recently and found that he not only preaches what he sings, but also lives what he preaches.  I pray you enjoy reading his responses to the questions I presented to him.

Matthew said that it’s hard to remember when he first heard Southern Gospel Music.  He said, “It’s difficult to say when church music, family music, fun music was and is Southern Gospel Music.  It wasn’t until someone told us what we were listening to that we knew what to call the music that was such a big part of our everyday lives.  I have always loved Gospel Music of every kind and type.  From an early age my family memories are around the piano singing the songs of the church.  My father has always made it a point to pursue excellent, God-honoring music in our church, and as long as those two elements were first and foremost, then the style really didn’t matter.   From big band to bluegrass it all has a place.”

Now that he is a part of a Gospel singing group, Mathew says that following in the steps of some of the greatest Gospel Music Legends is nearly incomprehensible.  “To even be mentioned in phrases with people that you admire so dearly seems to be beyond anything we could have imagined for Canton Junction,” said Matthew.

Mathew said his greatest influence has been his father, John Hagee.  He added, “Outside of my father in music, there have been many – George Younce, Glen Payne, Lari Goss, Ben Speer, and Bill Gaither – not to mention the gentlemen I’m privileged to work with now.”

As a singer, the lyrics of songs become a very important part of your life.  Matthew said if he could write a song to describe his life so far, he would title the song, “Blessed.”  Concerning a song that has blessed him personally, he responded, “That is something that changes from day to day and season to season.   Whether it is a season of joy or hardship, the greatest endorsement I can give to Gospel Music is that it always meets the needs of the moment.”

Matthew is definitely a family man.  Matthew said, “Anywhere my wife and kids are happy is paradise to me.”  He and his wife Kendal are blessed with three children, Hannah Rose, John William and Joel Charles, and are looking forward to the birth of their fourth child in April 2013.  He says he balances his time between family and ministry by purposely devoting his time to whatever it is he is doing.  “When I’m with my family, I’m with my family,” Matthew said.  “When I am working, I am working.  Whatever I am doing at the moment is what I am 100% invested in.”

Matthew shared some wisdom to young artists who are just starting out.  He said, “Always honor God; make worship a priority and endure.”  Matthew said, “God is alive and well and watching.”  Canton Junction follows this advice, understanding the fact that we should live our lives in honor of our Heavenly Father, making Him proud when He watches us along the road of life.

More About Matt

Most Encouraging Scripture: Jeremiah 1:5

Favorite Restaurant: “What are you hungry for?”

Favorite Book: Whichever one is in my hand at the moment.  I love to read!

The group is excited to see what great things God has in store for them as they seek His direction on their musical journey.  Their journey has literally taken them around the world with their tour of Israel where they performed for Prime Minister Netanyahu.  Additionally, they recently recorded a live concert in San Antonio.  “It was one of the most exciting musical events that I have ever been a part of,” stated Matthew.  “We are looking forward to sharing the evening in a video release very soon.”

Canton Junction has experienced great success throughout the time they have been sharing the Good News through song.  And it is certain that they will continue to have tremendous success for years to come.  For Matthew, and quite assuredly the other members of the group, the best part of traveling and singing as Canton Junction is the “opportunity to see people blessed by the message of the music that we sing and to enjoy singing with friends that mean so much.”  That is what it is truly all about: the message in the music, the music along the journey, and the faithful journey traveled by Canton Junction.

Canton Junction recently celebrated their chart-topping radio success at a special luncheon. The quartet’s debut single, “Hold On,” written by Gerald Crabb, reached #1 on The Christian Voice singles chart, while currently holding the #2 position on The Singing News.  To order Canton Junction’s debut album, visit: http://www.differencemedia.org.

 

For More information, visit Canton Junction on facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CantonJunctionMusic

If you enjoyed this article, please download the latest issue of SGNScoops Magazine.  February’s issue highlights the ministries of The Nelons, The Browders, Lindsay Huggins, Gerald Crabb and more.   Here:


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CANTON JUNCTION CELEBRATES CHART-TOPPING SINGLE

Written by SGN Scoops on February 12, 2013 – 5:15 pm -

Canton_1photoNASHVILLE, Tenn.—Difference Media recording artist Canton Junction recently celebrated their chart-topping success at a special luncheon held in Nashville. The quartet’s debut single, “Hold On,” reached #1 on The Christian Voice singles chart, while currently holding the #2 position on The Singing News chart. Pictured at the celebration are (L to R) Canton Junction members Tim Duncan, Aaron Crabb and Matthew Hagee; Jan Binkley Puryear, Jan Puryear Promotions; and Difference Media engineers David Young and Robert Smith. Not pictured are Michael Sykes, producer, and Steve Allen, engineer. “Hold On” is featured on Canton Junction’s self-titled debut, which released last year on the Difference Media label.

For further information, visit www.differencemedia.org or www.turningpointpr.com.


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CANTON JUNCTION DEBUT RELEASE AVAILABLE NOW!

Written by SGN Scoops Staff on September 5, 2012 – 10:03 am -

NASHVILLE, TN (September 4, 2012) – DIFFERENCE MEDIA is excited to announce that the highly anticipated self-titled debut CD of CANTON JUNCTION is now available! The quartet, consisting of Aaron Crabb, Tim Duncan, Matthew Hagee and Michael Sykes celebrated the release on a live telecast of CELEBRATION with MARCUS & JONI LAMB on DAYSTAR TELEVISION NETWORK on release day, September 4, 2012.

The group’s name, Canton Junction, “where good things come together” literally means: the crossroads of different subjects or regions into one gathering point. That definition perfectly describes exactly what happened when these four musical forces collided. Aaron Crabb, Tim Duncan, Matthew Hagee and Michael Sykes are four very different individuals who came from varying musical backgrounds and geographic locations, yet the moment they began singing together they stood on common ground.

The debut release is a two-disc set featuring twenty tracks of both new and classic material and is also representative of many roads merging into one. The influences you will hear range from timeless hymns to contemporary tunes … from southern gospel to big band. Among the group’s repertoire are time-tested songs of the church, fresh new songs written out of their own experiences, as well as songs you may have heard, but not like this.

Canton Junction started somewhat spontaneously, in preparation for special music at Cornerstone Church in San Antonio, Texas. But after that first Sunday morning performance and the subsequent television broadcast, the response they received was overwhelming. After years of making music individually, these four men knew the harmony they had experienced – literally and figuratively – was out of the ordinary. They had to keep singing.

The two-disc set is available now at all retail outlets and online digitally. Additionally, it is available at www.JHM.org by clicking here.
Connect with Canton Junction by following them on Twitter @CantonJunction or liking them at http://www.facebook.com/CantonJunctionMusic. For more information about Difference Media, visit www.DifferenceMedia.org.


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