Chris Rice

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Chris Rice
OriginClinton, Maryland, United States
GenresCCM, folk
Years active1996–2007, 2018–present
LabelsRocketown, Eb+Flo, Clumsy Fly
Websitechrisrice.com

Chris Rice is an American singer and songwriter who works in the contemporary Christian music, contemporary folk and adult contemporary genres. He became a recording artist as well in 1996 after signing a contract with Rocketown Records and releasing his debut album, Deep Enough to Dream.

Biography[edit]

Early years[edit]

Chris Rice, a native of Clinton, Maryland, grew up as the second of four sons born to bookstore owners. His parents, and other adult mentors, influenced Rice's Christian faith and his early work with youth and college students.

Having taken only three years of piano lessons as a child, Rice did not aspire to a career in either music or student work. But frequent invitations to speak and lead music at his church's youth group events led to more such invitations throughout his college years at the University of Maryland, Grace College in Winona Lake, Indiana, and Union University in Jackson, Tennessee. He holds a bachelor's degree in Psychology and Communication.[1] While leading music and coaching high school soccer teams he began writing songs. What began as weekend and summer work with youth and college students soon turned into a full-time career during his twenties and thirties, and prompted Rice to write and perform mainly on the guitar.

For those two decades, Rice spent his time as an itinerant speaker and songwriter/musician, playing for high school and college conferences and camps nationwide. This schedule prepared Chris for his career as a signed recording artist, touring the country with a full band.

Career as a songwriter[edit]

Rice's songwriting career began in the mid-1980s, after moving from his Washington, D.C., home to Nashville, Tenn. During that period several of Rice's songs were recorded by other artists, including Kathy Troccoli and Terri Gibbs. Rice's "Welcome to Our World", an original Christmas song since recorded by Michael W. Smith, Amy Grant and John Tesh, moved Smith to urge his new label, Rocketown Records, to sign Rice as its first artist in 1996.[citation needed]

Solo artist[edit]

With the help of Monroe Jones' production skills, Chris Rice recorded Deep Enough to Dream for a September 1997 release. Past the Edges followed a year later. Rice's third album, Smell the Color 9, was issued in late 2000.

In 2001, Rice released two piano-only, instrumental releases, The Living Room Sessions and The Living Room Sessions: Christmas, recorded on Rice's own living room grand piano.[citation needed]

His sixth album, Run the Earth... Watch the Sky, released in March 2003, Chris again joined the production talents of his longtime friend and collaborator Monroe Jones.[citation needed] The album's first single was "The Other Side of the Radio".[citation needed]

These four studio releases (plus the two instrumental releases) fulfilled Rice's contractual commitment to Rocketown[citation needed] and they issued several compilation albums, Short Term Memories and Snapshots: Live and Fan Favorites, following his departure in June 2004 and February 2005 respectively.[citation needed]

New record label[edit]

Rice signed with independent label Eb+Flo Records, and made a marketing and distribution agreement with INO Records who had distribution through Sony/Columbia removed the limitation of catering his music to Christian radio formats.[citation needed]

His fifth studio album, Amusing, released in August 2005.[citation needed] For the first time in his career, Rice released radio singles to AC and Light Rock stations around the country, the first single being a light romantic song entitled "When Did You Fall (In Love With Me?)" which reached No. 8 on the Pop AC radio format and enjoyed Top Ten status throughout the middle of 2006.[citation needed] A second AC hit, "Lemonade", began climbing the AC chart in 2007.[citation needed]

With his success on the AC radio format, Rice released a side project hearkening back to his roots, a vocal hymns album, Peace Like a River: The Hymns Project, in November 2006.[citation needed]

Rice released What a Heart Is Beating For in July 2007, further positioning him as a pop artist. Only 2 of its 13 songs contained overt faith themes.[citation needed]

Other[edit]

Since 2007, Rice has branched out in the visual arts, including photography and painting.[2][non-primary source needed] In 2016, he self-published Widen, a book of poetry.[3][4]

In December 2018, Rice and Andrew Ripp pre-released an album, Songs We Wrote on Tuesdays, as Ripp+Rice as well as a single "This Ain't No Love Song" from that album.[5][non-primary source needed] The album, a mix of adult contemporary and country music and was officially released on January 4, 2019.[6]

Discography[edit]

Studio albums[edit]

Year Album details Peak chart positions
US
[7]
US
Christ

[8]
1994 Live By Faith
  • Released: 1994
  • Label: none
  • Format: CD, DI
1997 Deep Enough to Dream
  • Released: September 2, 1997
  • Label: Rocketown
  • Format: CD, DI
7
1998 Past the Edges
  • Released: September 15, 1998
  • Label: Rocketown
  • Format: CD, DI
167 4
2000 Smell the Color 9
  • Released: January 19, 2000
  • Label: Rocketown
  • Format: CD, DI
20
2003 Run the Earth... Watch the Sky
  • Released: March 4, 2003
  • Label: Rocketown
  • Format: CD, DI
161 12
2005 Amusing
  • Released: August 23, 2005
  • Label: Eb+Flo
  • Format: CD, DI
10
2006 Peace Like a River: The Hymns Project
  • Released: January 1, 2006
  • Label: Eb+Flo
  • Format: CD, DI
2007 What a Heart Is Beating For
  • Released: July 17, 2007
  • Label: Eb+Flo
  • Format: CD, DI
9
2019 Songs We Wrote on Tuesdays
(as Ripp+Rice, with Andrew Ripp)
  • Released: January 4, 2019
  • Label: none
  • Format: CD, DI
Untitled Hymn: A Collection of Hymns

EPs and other releases[edit]

Year Album details Peak chart positions
US
Christ

[8]
2001 The Living Room Sessions
  • Released: April 5, 2001
  • Label: Rocketown
  • Format: CD, DI
23
The Living Room Sessions: Christmas
  • Released: October 2, 2001
  • Label: Rocketown
  • Format: CD, DI
26
2004 Short Term Memories
  • Released: June 8, 2004
  • Label: Rocketown
  • Format: CD, DI
10
2005 Snapshots: Live and Fan Favorites
  • Released: February 8, 2005
  • Label: Rocketown
  • Format: CD, DI
48
When Did You Fall
  • Released: August 23, 2005
  • Label: Eb+Flo
  • Format: CD, DI
Merry Chris Rice
  • Released: November 15, 2005
  • Label: Eb+Flo
  • Format: CD, DI

Singles[edit]

Year Title Peak positions Album
US
AC

[9]
US Christ.
[10]
US Christ
AC

[11]
1997 "Deep Enough To Dream" Deep Enough to Dream
2002 "Christmas Party" The Living Room Sessions: Christmas
2003 "Smile (Just Want To Be With You)" 2 2 Run the Earth... Watch the Sky
2004 "Untitled Hymn (Come To Jesus)" 38 37
"The Other Side of the Radio" 36
"Go Light Your World" 23 21 Short Term Memories
"Cartoons" 39 35
2005 "Love Like Crazy" 38 Amusing
2006 "When Did You Fall (In Love With Me)" 9 18 17
"The Christmas Song (Chesnuts Roasting On An Open Fire)" 34 31 Merry Chris Rice
2007 "Lemonade" 22 What a Heart Is Beating For
"Sad Song"

Awards[edit]

  • 1998 – Nominated for six Dove Awards, including New Artist of the Year, Male Vocalist of the Year, Songwriter of the Year and Pop/Contemporary Album of the Year[12]
  • 1999 – Dove Award winner for Male Vocalist of the Year and for participation in Special Event Album of the Year – Exodus
  • 2000 – Dove Award nominee for Recorded Music Packaging
  • 2002 – Dove Award nominee for Instrumental Album of the Year – Living Room Sessions: Hymns

References[edit]

  1. ^ "BIO". CHRISRICE.COM. Retrieved December 15, 2018.
  2. ^ "ART ORIGINALS". CHRISRICE.COM. Retrieved December 15, 2018.
  3. ^ Rice, Chris (March 2, 2016). Widen: A Collection of Poems. Chris Rice Books. p. 164. ISBN 978-0997323108.
  4. ^ "Widen: A Collection of Poems by Chris Rice". GoodReads. March 1, 2016. Retrieved September 12, 2019.
  5. ^ "RIPP+RICE". CHRISRICE.COM. Retrieved December 15, 2018.
  6. ^ Geil, Mark (January 17, 2019). "Andrew Ripp Discusses His New Project with Chris Rice". CCM Magazine. Retrieved September 12, 2019.
  7. ^ "Chris Rice Chart history: Top 200 Albums". Billboard. Retrieved December 12, 2018.
  8. ^ a b "Chris Rice Chart history: Top Christian Albums". Billboard. Retrieved December 12, 2018.
  9. ^ "Chris Rice - Chart history (Adult Contemporary)". Billboard. Retrieved December 12, 2018.
  10. ^ "Chris Rice - Chart history (Hot Christian Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved December 12, 2018.
  11. ^ "Chris Rice - Chart history (Christian AC)". Billboard. Retrieved December 12, 2018.
  12. ^ "About.com Gospel Biography". Christianmusic.about.com. July 13, 2013. Retrieved July 31, 2013.

External links[edit]