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  • Writer's pictureJoel Caballero

The Message (1996)

Updated: Apr 28


The Message is the sixth studio album by the Christian music male vocal group 4Him, released in 1996 on Benson Records. The group themselves got involved in production, co-producing the album with Bill Baumgart, along with returning producers Don Koch, Michael Omartian and Peter Wolf.


With The Message, 4Him changed their overall sound in an effort to keep pushing the creative limits of the group. The guys replaced the over-the-top orchestrations and choral vocal arrangements with a stripped down, acoustic band approach where one of the guys would sing lead and the other three would sing backing vocals. 4Him earned their first (and only) Grammy nomination for Best Pop/Contemporary Gospel Album for this project. 4Him member Mark Harris co-wrote all but one of the songs on The Message. The other member Marty Magehee wrote and sang the lead on the track "Sacred Hideaway." Songwriting contributions also by producers Koch and Omartian, Brent Bourgeois and Chris Eaton among others.


The Message peaked at number 3 on the Billboard Top Christian Albums, number 2 on the Heatseekers Albums and debuted on the Top 200 Albums chart at number 115. At the 1997 GMA Dove Awards, they were nominated for Group of the Year, Artist of the year and Pop/Contemporary Album of the Year.


Track listing


1. Lay It All on the Line (Mark Harris, Chris Eaton, Brent Bourgeois) -4:23

2. The Measure of a Man (Mark Lewis, Don Koch, Stephanie Lewis) -4:05

3. Land of Mercy (Mark Harris, Don Koch, Dave Clark, Keith Dudley) -4:07

4. The Message (Mark Harris, Michael Omartian, Don Koch) -4:24

5. The King and I (Mark Harris, Michael Omartian) -4:12

6. Center of the Mark (Mark Harris, Don Koch) -5:23

7. Window With a View (Mark Harris, Don Koch, Dave Clark) -4:04

8. All the Evidence I Need (Mark Harris, Don Koch, Keith Dudley) -4:25

9. Sacred Hideaway (Marty Magehee) -5:21

10. A Lot Like You (Mark Harris, Michael Omartian, Keith Dudley) -4:29

11. Greatest Story Ever Told (Mark Harris, Brent Bourgeois) -5:33


Personnel


4Him:

Mark Harris -vocals

Andy Chrisman -vocals

Kirk Sullivan -vocals

Marty Magehee -vocals


Production credits


4Him and Bill Baumgart -producers (tracks 1, 6, 8 and 11)

Don Koch -producer (track 2, 3 and 7)

Michael Omartian -producer (tracks 4, 5 and 10)

Peter Wolf -producer (track 9)


Radio singles

1996 "The Message" -#12 Christian CHR, #1 Christian AC

1996 "Land of Mercy" -#2 Christian CHR, #1 Christian AC

1996 -1997 "The Measure of a Man" -#16 Christian CHR, #1 Christian AC

1997 "Sacred Hideaway" -#10 Christian CHR, #3 Christian AC

1997 "Lay It All on the Line" -#13 Christian CHR, #1 Christian AC

1997 "Center of the Mark" -#4 Christian AC


Previous release: The Ride (1994)

Next release: Obvious (1998)

Watch the music video of "The Message" here:

Watch the music video of "The Measure of a Man" here:


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