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"Nitengale Named Winner of National Talent Search Competition"

After a nationwide talent search competition, Word Label Group, the Christian Festival Association (CFA) and Artist Ovation have announced ethereal rock group, Nitengale, as the overall 2007 competition winner.

The band’s entire town of Fairbanks, AK pulled together to send Nitengale ( to the competition, held at Soundcheck in Nashville, TN on September 22. “Winning the competition was an unexpected blessing. We thank God for His favor and are excited and honored to be working with Word Label Group and their staff.”

Following submissions online, independent artists from across the U.S. performed before a panel of music professionals at one of 16 participating CFA summer festivals located throughout the country. At the conclusion of regional events, competition finalists were chosen to perform at the national event in Nashville where the winning band was announced and honored with an artist development agreement and named the 2007 Artist Ovation competition winner.
Josh Bailey, Director of A&R for Word Label Group, continues, “As a label staff, we really enjoyed the opportunity to be a part of this event. The unique partnership with Artist Ovation, Christian Festival Association and Word Label Group really helped make this competition a great opportunity for developing artists. The artists featured were incredibly talented and we, as an A&R team, look forward to working closely with this year's winner.”

Word Label Group, comprised of Word Records, Fervent Records, Myrrh Records and Word Music Publishing, is a division of Word Entertainment, a Warner/Curb Company. The artist roster heralds some of today's top Christian music performers and songwriters including Point Of Grace, Mark Schultz, Diamond Rio, BarlowGirl, Big Daddy Weave, Building 429, Nicole C. Mullen and Stellar Kart. The Word Label Group leads the industry with over 55 years of music-making history. For more information on Word Label Group and its artists, visit

The Christian Festival Association is comprised of 27 of the nation’s leading Christian music festivals from coast to coast. Its mission is to help member festivals grow both spiritually and fiscally, so that more lives can be changed for the glory of God. Over 22 million Christian music fans each year attend live events in venues ranging from small church gatherings to huge arena-based shows. Participating CFA member music festivals attract more than 1.5 million of these fans each summer to their multi-day Christian music festivals offered coast to coast. For more information on CFA, including a list of participating festivals, visit

Artist Ovation is an online web community providing artists the opportunity to interact with fans, enter festival competitions, and create exposure to the overall general music industry. Artist Ovation artists market themselves online by posting materials that are reviewed and rated by peers. Visit for more details.

Below is the 2007 Artist Ovation competition winners, Nitengale, at Soundcheck in Nashville, TN. Pictured (l-r) are Bob Thompson, President of CFA; Jeremy Holley, Sr. Director of Consumer & Interactive Marketing at Word Label Group; Joshua Baumgartner, keys, main vocals; Stephen Pettyjohn, electric guitar; Joe Snow, drums; Sean Lovegrove, bass; Gerald Smith, President & CEO of Premier Studios (Artist Ovation).

Saturday, October 06, 2007 - CMSpin

""Theatres" CD Review"

I discovered this Alaskan based band by accident at this year's Cornerstone while going back to our tent, at a time of day - or night - when normal people should already be sleeping. But this is a rock festival; uncommon situations are considered to be the norm, and hearing beautiful piano notes flowing in the air while talking with your wife is exactly what I'm talking about. Since that moment, there hasn't been a moment when we regretted stopping by and followed the track to where the music came from. What we discovered became our best musical moment of the week, topping other events that still where top notch and could have easily won the price. But there was something unique coming from these guys that made us stay despite the tiredness of a busy day, and the good news is that the passion they played with on their instruments has transposed on the record. And what a piano!

Yes, what a piano. As omnipresent as it is charming, this instrument is the staple on which Nitengale crafts their songs, backed up perfectly by a guitar that is either subtle or raging, both case proving to be lethal. So when all of this comes with a bass guitar you can actually hear (and without tweaking your equalizer) and a drum section that does way more than just keeping the beat, it is fair to say that this is one hugely talented group of musicians that should go a long way. Hard to believe they've been playing together for less than two years!

This is all perfectly illustrated by the record's first song, also called Theatres. After an introduction that patiently builds a growing atmosphere - the kind of moment when you know something is going to happen and you can't wait for it to come - the listener is taken on a journey of pure passion and intensity. All the ingredients needed to produce a hit are perfectly blended: changing rhythms, impressive melodies, and powerful instruments coupled with countless breaks. And, like a delightful cherry on top, a towering vocal performance that almost makes Mathew Bellamy look like a wannabee. Fitting perfectly with the rest, Josh's haunting voice does indeed sound at time like Muse's front man, though not going as high as a falsetto. It's no surprise when you know that this band is one of Nitengale's many influences, along with other great British bands like U2, Queen and Coldplay, to name a few. Take the best from what's available and use it to shape your own and distinctive sound, that's not a bad idea if you ask me.

Searchlights And Saving Grace follows using the same formula but with an even better intro. Again, the piano plays a major part of the magic ? its metallic sound is so beautiful, could be it has something to do with its age (it was built in 1890, no kidding), but whatever the reasons, it has an impact on the songs that never stops. Flatline, Secrets, Speculation, Something Short of Glorious, Here's My Heart, the list of excellent songs goes on and on, and with the exception of No Regrets, they're all as good. This string of near-perfection goes all the way to the album's finale, Stoneback, a genuine masterpiece that perfectly ends up the record, as well as being one of the finest rock songs ever written. The way this 6+ minutes song is played is at times glorious, sometimes unbelievable, but most of the time shockingly brilliant.

True, the songs are all using the same formula, but this doesn't prevent each one of them from having its own identity. All, at different levels, are peace, joy and bliss providers. This is made possible by the bands' work ethic and sheer genius, as well as their desire to share their faith using their God-given talents. The lyrics are cut out of the same block as their music and reflect their love for the Almighty and their peers like few other bands manage to do lately. And using enough poetry in the process to please even the ones who are only interested in their music.

Don't wait, buy a copy of Theatres and get your dose of the shivers. Goosebumps are good for you. - Jeremie Kaufmann of


Theatres is the present EP and is played on many indie stations throughout the Continental United States and Alaska. Nitengale is presently working with producers from Word Records and the gears are turning toward their coming debut. Also, the band is currently putting together a second self-produced release.



In 2oo8, the Alaskan piano based rock band Nitengale made its debut as the Word Records Artist Ovation National winner and continued on through the year playing many of todays biggest Christian Music Festivals. The bands audience and fan base grew exponentially as the year progressed and now coming in to 2009, has the band returning to last years festivals and so much more.

The tour will be ranging both east and west coasts and will be pushing the Bands new CD release and new prospects for 2009. There is expected to be a great turnout for this year considering the amplitude of last years tour, and with that excitement the band is equally eager to give their listeners a new taste of this years album.

The powerful musical sounds and message produced from Nitengale will be as strong as ever. With soaring guitar melodies and neo-classical piano composition stretching over age and preference, Nitengales broad spectrum of listeners will still have the signature sound they have yearned for since the previous year.

Along with this years tour, Nitengale has joined with the international ministry Compassion, and are very excited about working with the program and all that it entails. (

Several months ago, the band decided it would be best to be located out of Nashville, TN to be closer to Word Records, and to be in a more centralized location for touring. The move has been very good for the band and has allowed for many large churches to book them throughout the year. With the great reviews and acceptance of Nitengales first self recorded EP Theatres, 2009 is looking very bright for the four members of Nitengale and their fans. God willing, they will continue to stir the Christian and secular music scenes with their original sound.

Nitengale is always looking for more places to play so please contact us with any request. Please Contact Nitengales Manager Barbie Baumgartner at or 907-488-3460