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EMI CMG and Vertical Shift Records announce worldwide distribution agreement

Indie acts Re:zound and Ever Stays Red releases slated for early 2008

BRENTWOOD, Tenn. – December 6, 2007 – EMI CMG Distribution and newly-formed independent label Vertical Shift Records have agreed to a long-term, worldwide distribution agreement for the exclusive rights to distribute to Christian, general market and digital and mobile retail outlets. The new partnership launches with the release of new projects from successful indie bands Re:zound and Ever Stays Red in early 2008.

“All of us at EMI CMG could not be more excited to work with Vertical Shift Records, a company with a heart dedicated to music ministry and missions. We look forward to a successful relationship with the label and the artists they support,” said Bill Hearn, President and CEO of EMI Christian Music Group.

“It is Vertical Shift’s vision to be a leading player in the Christian music industry, and to have a global impact for the gospel through music. We are honored to share this new journey with EMI CMG, a company that has achieved such a tremendous level of success for that very cause,” said Ken Mary, President of Vertical Shift Records.

A veteran of both the mainstream and CCM industries, Mary’s work as a producer and musician has included a wide diversity of internationally known artists such as Alice Cooper, LaRue, Gene Simmons, Ricardo, Everybodyduck, The Beach Boys, Trik Turner, Megadeth and many more.

EMI CMG Distribution will release the first two Vertical Shift artist releases on March 11, 2008 with Re:zound’s Abandoned to You and Ever Stay Red’s On the Brink of It All. These will be the first releases to be distributed for both bands under the venture (both have previously released successful albums on Vertical Shift) Later in 2008, Vertical Shift will introduce Kelly Mack, Out of Ruin and Vikki Jordan.

“Vertical Shift Records has a foundation firmly planted in the church and with leadership that has a formidable music legacy, and EMI CMG is honored to partner with them as they launch this new label and introduce a new generation of great Christian music to the marketplace,” said Greg Bays, Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing for EMI CMG Distribution.

Re:zound is a band whose blend of modern worship and aggressive rock was birthed from the youth program at Living Word Church in Mesa, Arizona. The band, who has a calling to reach young people internationally, plays for crowds reaching 50,000 – 75,000 per event at rock crusades spanning far away countries such as India, Cambodia, Thailand, Brazil, and even Communist Vietnam. They have appeared in U.S. concerts with Jeremy Camp, Michael W. Smith, Tree63, and David Crowder Band. The band’s first independent album released to unexpected success when the single Angel garnered airplay on a number of mainstream radio stations, helping the band earn the title of “MTV’s #1 Undiscovered Artist” for four months running. Additionally, Re:zound has scored three Radio & Records Top 20 singles with Majesty, Great I Am and Hallelujah. The band is comprised of lead vocalist Jason Anderson, guitarists Jeff Zubeck and Wes Bender, bass player Ariel Ortiz and drummer Jordan Potts.

Formed in 2004, Ever Stays Red showcases its inventive hard driving alternative rock through the distinctive vocals of lead singer Dustin Carlson. Supported by band mates Zach Andresen on lead guitar; Erick Brunner on bass and Josh Carlson on drums, Ever Stays Red’s indie debut album I’ll Tell the World boasted three hit Christian rock singles. The band, currently touring with Kutless, has also performed in concert with Delirious, Thousand Foot Crutch, Jeremy Camp, Hawk Nelson and Sanctus Real.

About Vertical Shift Records (www.verticalshiftrecords.com)
Vertical Shift Records (VSR) is a sister company to Vertical Shift Productions, a trusted name for Christian programming in film and television since 2002 for such international TV corporations at TBN, Daystar, ABC Family, PAX and UPN. VSR is under the corporate umbrella of Living Word Bible Church, one of the fastest growing mega-churches in the Southwest. Offices for VSR will be located in the 86,000 square foot facility at Living Word.

About EMI CMG Distribution (www.emicmg.com)
Billboard Magazine’s annual Top Christian Music Distributor since 1995, EMI CMG Distribution was founded in 1994 to serve as the main distribution outlet for EMI CMG’s owned and distributed labels to the US Christian and general retail marketplace, and the international Christian marketplace. In addition to distributing EMI CMG fully-owned labels, which include EMI CMG Label Group’s Sparrow, ForeFront, and Credential imprints, as well as EMI Gospel and Worship Together, EMI CMG Distribution has exclusive distribution agreements with Tooth & Nail/BEC, Gaither Music Group, Gotee, Big Idea, Hal Leonard, Inpop, Troubadour for the Lord, Universal Music Group, Cartoon Pizza, Genius Products, Guardian Studios/Bananas, Safe Side, Third Day Games and Digital Praise. EMI CMG Distribution is a division of EMI CMG, a unit of EMI Music, part of EMI Group (www.emigroup.com); one of the world’s leading music companies.

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