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|Birth name||Crystal Renee Aikin|
|Born||September 21, 1974|
Tacoma, Washington, U.S.
|Labels||Verity Gospel Music Group|
|Associated acts||Soul, Heaven Sent Us|
Crystal Renee Aikin (born September 21, 1974) is an American gospel singer-songwriter from Tacoma, Washington, and the winner of the first season of Sunday Best. Her eponymous debut album was released on January 13, 2009, through Verity Records.
Early life and career
Aikin grew up in Tacoma, Washington. Since her childhood, she attended Altheimer Memorial Church of God In Christ, where she sang in the Sunshine Band. During her teen and young adult years, she sang on the Praise and Worship team while becoming recognized as a local singer in the Tacoma-Seattle area. During this time, Aikin also obtained a Bachelor's degree in Biology and Psychology.
While a teenager, Aikin was part of a local group called Heaven Sent Us. In the late 1990s, Aikin joined a local singing group called Soul (Hendrix/Trinity Records). This group gave her more exposure outside of the Tacoma area, even performing at the Gospel Music Workshop of America.
After leaving Soul, Aikin continued singing in the Tacoma area. In 2005, she enrolled at Pacific Lutheran University and obtained a nursing degree. Aikin's mother, a registered nurse also, is a Professor of Nursing at the university. After that, she started working as an emergency room nurse.
In 2007, Aikin auditioned for the reality television contest, Sunday Best, where Christian singers compete for a record contract in the Christian music industry. After being chosen to participate, Aikin went to Los Angeles. After several weeks of competition, she finished in first place, winning a recording contract with Zomba Gospel Music (now Verity Gospel Music Group). She also won a 2008 Toyota Camry.
|Week #||Song choice||Original artist||Order #||Result|
|3||"Alabaster Box"||CeCe Winans||N/A||Advanced|
|4||"Running Back to You"||Commissioned||N/A||Advanced|
|5||"What's Going On"||Marvin Gaye||N/A||Advanced|
|7||"Optimistic"||Sounds Of Blackness||N/A||Advanced|
|8||"Higher Ground"||Stevie Wonder||N/A||Advanced|
Post Sunday Best career
After signing with Verity, Aikin released her eponymous debut album on March 17, 2009. The album featured producer contributions from PAJAM, Dre & Vidal, Gerald Haddon, Derek Clark, and Asaph Ward, among others.
|2015||All I Need||—||8|
|"—" denotes releases that did not chart|
Awards and nominations
|2010||Stellar Awards||New Artist of the Year Award||Won|
|2010||GMA Dove Awards||New Artist of the Year||Nominated|
- TheeCrystalAikin [@crystalaikin] (22 September 2013). "Sept 21st... My Birthday!! Had a blessed day and its still going!! 39 and going strong!!! Celebrate Life!" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
- Crystal Aikin Named BET's Sunday Best Archived 2011-07-08 at the Wayback Machine. on Dallas Gospel Connection
- Biography at BlackGospel.com
- Dove Awards nominees announced
| Sunday Best winner