With the United States facing its worst financial crisis since the Great Depression, the Gospel Music Association has added two new economically-focused sessions to its lineup of events for this year's GMA Music Week.
The two new sessions, featuring financial experts and leading authors Michael Q. Pink and Bethany and Scott Palmer, will focus on addressing the economic realities facing the nation and specifically the music community, announced GMA president and CEO John W. Styll this week.
Along with the already announced "Wealth Program" session, led by financial guru Dave Ramsey, the sessions will provide attendees inspiration, insight and creative solutions to both professional and personal concerns.
"GMA Music Week is a time to gather, not only to celebrate the achievements of our artists and businesses, but perhaps as importantly, this week offers us an opportunity to support, equip and encourage in the shared journey during turbulent economic times," said Styll of the annual event in Nashville, scheduled this year for Apr. 18-22.
"GMA offers an excellent return on investment to our attendees with specific classes this year that address the important matters of personal and business finances within the context of music and ministry," he added.
Every year, in April, thousands flock to Music City for GMA Music Week for more than 100 artist performances, educational seminars, spiritual enrichment, and unique networking opportunities. Attendees include artists, radio professionals, retailers, managers, agents, promoters, record companies, publishers, representatives from the media, and marketing and public relations professionals, among others.
Furthermore, while the name "Gospel Music Association" might suggest a single music genre, all genres are represented, including pop, rock, praise & worship, black gospel, R&B, hip hop, southern gospel, country, and more.
And according to Styll, it is this diversity that helps GMA Music Week each year become a must-attend convention for anyone doing business in or with the gospel music community.
"Our separate interests and sectors are like individual gears," Styll explains. "By synchronizing all of the gears, we are in a better position to overcome whatever adversity may come our way so that we can continue to work towards our goal of creating music and spreading its beauty and message far and wide."
And especially during these financially difficult times, Styll says it is "critically important to take the time to work together to ensure our long-term success."
Registration for GMA Music Week 2009 is currently available online at gospelmusic.org as well as information about track offerings, additional speakers, hotels and other convention details.
Following the Apr. 18-22 event will be the 40th Annual GMA Dove Awards on Apr. 23 at the Grand Ole Opry House in Nashville. Tickets for the Dove Awards are on sale at ticketmaster.com.