The Tony Dean Family, a gospel group from Evarts, has been nominated for a Diamond Award as “Christian Album of the Year” for their album entitled “Consume Me.”
The 2013 Diamond Awards, recognizing the best in southern, country, and bluegrass christian music, is hosted annually by SGNScoops digital magazine and Coastal Media Group.
The 10 artists receiving the most nominations in each category will be voted upon to create a top-five artist list. The top-five artists will then be voted upon and the artist who achieves the most votes in their category will be awarded a Diamond Award at the gala ceremony to be held at the Creekside Gospel Music Convention on Oct. 29, at Pigeon Forge, Tenn.
Anyone wishing to vote may go to SGNScoops.com and click on the Diamond Awards. You have to vote in each category until they reach category 16, which is the Dean’s album “Consume Me.” You have to continue voting until you reach the end where it will say done.
“I’ve been involved in music all my life,” said Tony Dean Sr. “My parents were the Doorway Singers. So, I’ve been around music since I was born. When I got married and had children I had to go to work in the coal mines to provide for my family. I worked 25 years underground. Last year, in January, we took our first trip as The Tony Dean Family to North Carolina. It had been 20 years since I had been there with my parents and we were welcomed with open arms. It just felt like this is my life.”
Dean said he continued to work in the mines until last July when he and his sons decided to make music their careers.
“We did our first project entitled ‘Consume Me’ in October,” said Dean. “The song has done real well and went to number 75 on the national charts. Victoria Johnson of West Virginia wrote the song and allowed us to go to Nashville and record it. We recorded our second song, one that my sister wrote entitled ‘We Can’t Lose’ and sang it at the National Quartet Convention in Louisville and placed Top 20 in the Regional Artists Showcase. We’re just Harlan County boys. The Lord has really blessed us to prosper and go on to a professional level.”
Dean said he is also a producer himself and records from time to time with Maggard Sounds in Big Stone Gap, Va., where groups such as Ralph Stanley and The Singing Cooks also record.
He said his last project was recorded with the Eddie Crook Company in Nashville, Tenn.
“We have moved on now and our next project will be with Crossroads Records, the second largest christian recording label in the nation,” said Dean. “Phil Cross will be our mentor and he’s going to take us and mold us and create us a brand. He’s excellent and has won several awards. The name of this project will be the ‘Signature Series,’ because we have penned 98 percent of the songs going on this project.
“Even though we’re gone most of the time, on the road doing shows, there is just nothing like turning up this little old road going to Evarts and knowing you’re going home. We love Harlan County and it will always be home to us. Our singing is all about the people — we love the people. We were raised in the mountains and I can’t deny our name has gotten out all across the nation and even internationally. We’re humbled at the level God has helped us achieve.”
The Tony Dean Family will perform at the Barbourville Water Park May 31 and June 1 at 5 p.m., Relay for Life in Corbin on June 7 at 8 p.m., the Poke Sallet Festival on June 8 at 4:45 p.m. and Relay for Life in Harlan on June 21 at 6 p.m.
Dean said his wife, Sherry, travels with the band doing scheduling and promotions, while also filling in as a singer from time to time. Along with their two sons in the band, they have a son in Oklahoma, a daughter in Cawood and a daughter in Harlan.
For CDs, bookings or more information, you may call 606-837-8733, 837-8297, 505-5291, email at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit their website at Tony Dean Family.com. You may also contact them on Facebook and Twitter.
Reach Nola Sizemore at 606-573-4510, ext. 115, email@example.com