Close

BMI Celebrates its Top Gospel Music Creators at the 2021 BMI Trailblazers of Gospel Music Awards

Donald Lawrence, Sir the Baptist, Kanye West and Songs of Kobalt Music Publishing Receive Top Honors

The 20 most-performed Gospel songs were also announced

Posted in News on June 7, 2021

BMI is proud to celebrate the 2021 BMI Trailblazers of Gospel Music Awards, honoring some of today’s legendary and rising Gospel music luminaries. The Gospel Song of the Year, Songwriter of the Year, Publisher of the Year and the 20 most-performed songs of the previous year were announced today on BMI.com and across the company’s social media platforms. In tribute to this inspiring generation of Gospel songwriters, BMI created a special page featuring uplifting performances and first-hand accounts of the songwriting process behind some of the award-winning songs, as well as special messages from the winners. To view this exclusive content and more, visit https://www.bmi.com/trailblazers2021.

“It is always an honor to celebrate BMI’s incredible community of Gospel music songwriters,” said Catherine Brewton, Vice President Creative, Atlanta. “Their artistry is a gift through which we find the strength to persevere in the face of adversity and the words to rejoice in moments of worship. Today we applaud their outstanding contributions to the genre, which continue to inspire so many with messages of love and hope.”

“Deliver Me (This Is My Exodus),” written by Donald Lawrence and Sir the Baptist, was awarded Song of the Year. Performed by Donald Lawrence and the Tri-City Singers with Le’Andria Johnson, the powerful decree of deliverance spent a total of 99 weeks on the Billboard Gospel Airplay chart, peaking at number one and winning the prized GMA Dove Award for Traditional Gospel Recorded Song of the Year. This is the first BMI Trailblazers of Gospel Award for Sir the Baptist, while Donald Lawrence earns his eighth Trailblazer Award.  Lawrence was previously awarded the Gospel Song of the Year in 2015 for “The Gift” and was also one of the 2009 Trailblazers of Gospel Music honorees.

Kanye West was named Songwriter of the Year for penning three of the award-winning Gospel songs “Hands On,” “On God” and “Selah” from his highly celebrated ninth studio album Jesus Is King, which garnered top industry accolades from Billboard and the GRAMMYS. West collaborated with Gospel great Fred Hammond for the crossover track “Hands On,” which landed on Billboard’s Christian, Gospel, R&B Hip-Hop and Hot 100 charts. The record’s single “Selah” broke into the top 20 on Billboard’s Hot 100 and was nominated for Top Gospel Song at the 2020 Billboard Music Awards, competing against “On God” that same year. With this distinction, West earns his first three Trailblazer Awards, adding to his extensive collection of 38 BMI Awards from R&B/Hip-Hop, Pop, and London.

Publisher of the Year went to Songs of Kobalt Music Publishing for representing three of BMI’s 20 most-performed Gospel songs including “I Made It Out,” written and performed by Pastor John P. Kee, featuring Zacardi Cortez, “Keep The Faith,” written and performed by Charles Jenkins and “Won’t Let Go,” written and performed by Travis Greene.

In addition to the major award winners, BMI also paid homage to the 20 most-performed Gospel songs of the year (2020). This year’s talented group of songwriters includes 19 first-time Trailblazer Award winners including Zacardi Cortez, Cydel C. Young, Renee Spearman, Terrence “Pusha T” Thorton, Natalie Lauren Simms, Allison Jeffrey LaValley, and more.

SONG OF THE YEAR

DELIVER ME (THIS IS MY EXODUS)
Donald Lawrence
Sir the Baptist
Baptist Publishing House
BMG Platinum Songs US
Primary Wave Beats
Q W Publishing

SONGWRITER OF THE YEAR

KANYE WEST
Hands On
On God
Selah

PUBLISHER OF THE YEAR

SONGS OF KOBALT MUSIC PUBLISHING
I Made It Out
Keep The Faith
Won’t Let Go

20 Most Performed Songs

Alright
Fred Hammond
Asaph A. Ward
Face’s Launching Pad Publishing

Big
Curtiss Glenn
Michael DeWayne McClure Jr.
CGlenn Publishing
Kerry Douglas Publishing
Rock City Media Group Publishing

Deliver Me (This Is My Exodus)
Donald Lawrence
Sir the Baptist
Baptist Publishing House
BMG Platinum Songs US
Primary Wave Beats
Q W Publishing

Hands On
Fred Hammond
Kanye West
EMI-Blackwood Music, Inc.
Please Gimme My Publishing, Inc.

I Love Him
Renee Spearman
Contempo One Publishing

I Made It Out
Pastor John P. Kee
Ja Twan Publishing
Songs of Kobalt Music Publishing

If God / Nothing But the Blood
Natalie Lauren Sims
Avex USA obo Xeva Music
BMG Platinum Songs US
Lead and Yellow Publishing

I’m All In
Maranda Curtis
Asaph A. Ward
Be Essential Songs
Butterfly Works Publishing
Capitol CMG Publishing
Miralex Music

Just for Me
Kirk Franklin
Aunt Gertrude Music Publishing
Capitol CMG Publishing

Keep The Faith
Charles Jenkins
Integrity First Music Publishing
P. Alex Publishing
Songs of Kobalt Music Publishing

Oh How Good It Is
Chris Byrd
Malaco World Music
Mr. Que Publishing

On God
Pi’erre Bourne
Michael “Cameone” Cerda
Kanye West
Cydel C. Young
BMG Platinum Songs US
EMI-Blackwood Music, Inc.
Mr. Redan
Please Gimme My Publishing, Inc.
Warner-Tamerlane Publishing Corp.

Pull Us Through
Jermaine Dolly
By Any Means Necessary Ent.
Dollyology World LLC

Selah
E.VAX
Allison Jeffrey LaValley
Dexter “Consequence” Mills
Gene “No Malice” Thornton Jr.
Terrance “Pusha T” Thornton
Kanye West
Cydel C. Young
BMG Platinum Songs US
Candied Jamm Music
EMI-Blackwood Music, Inc.
Mr. Redan
Neighborhood Pusha Publishing
peermusic III, Ltd.
Please Gimme My Publishing, Inc.
Savgos Music, Inc.
Songs by Cons Publishing
Sony/ATV Songs LLC
Thornton Trust Publishing
Two Thousand and Eleven Ribbon Music
Wixen Music Publishing, Inc.

Unstoppable
Makeba Riddick
EMI-Blackwood Music, Inc.
Janice Combs Music
SongsbyMak

Victory
J Drew Sheard II
EMI-Blackwood Music, Inc.
J Drew Sheard Music

Wide as the Sky
Jonas Myrin
Atlas Mountain Songs
Capitol CMG Publishing

Won’t Let Go
Travis Greene
Greenelight Music
Songs of Kobalt Music Publishing

You Don’t Know
Zacardi Cortez
Kerry Douglas
Ay Ron Ronell Lewis
Copyright Solutions Music
Creative Classic Songs Global
Kerry Douglas Publishing
Penned By Zetroc
Straightchurch Publishing

You’re Doing It All Again
Todd Dulaney
Entertainment One Music
U Know It 2