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09 April 2007

The third studio recording from critically-acclaimed Sparrow singer/songwriter Bethany Dillon, Waking Up, releases today. Produced by Ed Cash (Chris Tomlin), Will Hunt (Shawn McDonald) and John Alagia (John Mayer, Dave Matthews), the album showcases 13 tracks, all penned by Dillon, with four songs co-written by Cash.

The project is already drawing critical acclaim. According to the April issue of CCM Magazine, Waking Up “...could be a career album for the still young Bethany Dillon...giving listeners 13 melodic reasons to fall in love with this young songstress all over again.” And ChristianMusicToday.com says, “There’s far more going on here than the familiar girl-with-a-guitar-motif...Like all great albums though, the spiced up soundtrack doesn’t detract from the deeper message of the songs...Lyrics like these paint an engaging life picture that’s not clichéd, but rather a wake-up call for the senses and the soul.”

In addition to the re-launch of BethanyDillon.com, Dillon is “taking over” Hearitfirst.com beginning today. She is the first performer featured in a new series of Hearitfirst.com “Spotlight” online concerts. In addition, the site will release an email blast with song downloads; post a letter from Dillon explaining what Waking Up means to her; and host an Album Listening Party, in which songs from Dillon’s new project will be streamed. Hearitfirst.com receives more than 325,000 unique visitors monthly.

“Waking Up is the most joyful record I’ve made,” Dillon explains, “Even though it revolves around themes of brokenness and this feeling of being really small in the presence of God, I think this is the freest sounding project I’ve created.”

“It’s been incredible to watch Bethany’s evolution as both a singer and songwriter,” said Brad O’Donnell, vice president, A&R, Sparrow Records. “Each time she makes a record, she takes major steps forward as an artist and Waking Up is no exception. Who Bethany is and what she’s passionate about comes through in every one of these songs and we feel fortunate to bring this record to the world.”

Dillon kicked off her first headlining tour last week in Texas. Along with opening act Warren Barfield, the tour includes stops in Louisiana, Missouri, Illinois, Michigan, Indiana, Ohio, West Virginia and Virginia, before wrapping up in late April. Later this spring, Dillon will perform in Switzerland and Germany.

Waking Up is anchored by Dillon’s maturing artistry, both lyrically and musically, and centers on her desire to live in brokenness before God. The eclectic blend of acoustically-rooted, rock-influenced melodies includes Dillon’s first single, “The Kingdom,” which addresses the issue of barrenness. Additional highlights are “Beggar’s Heart,” inspired by Dillon’s recent trip to India, the piano-driven “Let Your Light Shine,” the relationship-oriented “When You Love Someone,” and the thankful intimacy of the title cut.

Dillon’s self-titled debut was the top-selling female solo debut in Contemporary Christian music in 2004. In addition to the release of her critically acclaimed follow-up, Imagination, in 2005, Dillon’s single “Dreamer” was featured as the end credit song of the DreamWorks motion picture, Dreamer: Inspired By A True Story. She has appeared in TIME magazine, on “CNN Sunday Morning,” and on the covers of CCM, Ignite Your Faith (Campus Life), Brio and Oncourse magazines.

Brentwood, Tennessee-based EMI CMG Label Group is comprised of Sparrow Records, Forefront Records, Credential Recordings and the worshiptogether label, in addition to providing marketing support for sixstepsrecords via a joint venture and licensing partnership. The Label Group is a division of EMI Christian Music Group. For further information, please visit www.emicmg.com.

Visit www.BethanyDillon.com, pressroom.emicmg.com.

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