Colton Dixon has won Dove Awards, topped the music charts and been a headliner for jam-packed Christian concerts.
He knows the power of contemporary Christian music because he has seen it transform the lives of fans. But he also experienced that transformation in his own life.
Years ago, as a teenager, Dixon was on the other side of the concert stage as a fan in the audience. His parents were country music fans. Dixon liked country – yes – but other styles, too.
“I gravitated toward Christian music,” he told Christian Headlines. “I guess I saw what Christian music had that other genres didn’t, which was purpose beyond just having a good time. Most of [mainstream] music is about self. Occasionally you’ll find something that transcends that, but Christian music, that [purpose] is what it’s about. That is the base.”
Dixon, who won Dove Awards in 2013 and 2015 for Rock/Contemporary Album of the Year (A Messenger and Anchor, respectively), is back on the charts with one of his fastest-rising hits yet, the single Build A Boat. The song celebrates faith in the midst of trials and tragedy. It climbed to No. 1 on Billboard’s Christian Digital Song Sales Chart and currently is No. 2 on Billboard’s Hot Christian Songs chart. In promoting the song, Dixon has partnered with Mercy Ships to raise awareness and support for the faith-based organization, which operates international hospital ships. The music video tells the story of twins Ousseynou and Assane, who had surgery aboard a Mercy Ship off the coast of Senegal to repair their bowed legs.
Even during his early years as an artist, Dixon, 31, wanted to make music “from a biblical lens that will inspire and encourage somebody,” he said.
“I love that,” he said. “Growing up in church probably had something to do with that. But still, as I grew up and started learning how to play the piano and learning how to sing and all these things, that’s what I wanted to do because I wanted people to experience what I had experienced. I even did that at a young age. You know, it’s kind of wild. I am so thankful for Christian music. Back then, it looked a little different than it does now. [It] was a little heavier rock back then. But the purpose was the same.”
As a teen, Dixon was a big fan of Skillet. For Winter Jam 2022, he toured with the legendary band.
“I’m so thankful that I get to now share this stage with some of those same people and artists that I grew up listening to and had a huge impact on my life,” he said. “It’s wild that I get to do this. It’s kind of a pinch-me thing. It really is.”
Photo courtesy: ©Atlantic, used with permission.
Michael Foust has covered the intersection of faith and news for 20 years. His stories have appeared in Baptist Press, Christianity Today, The Christian Post, the Leaf-Chronicle, the Toronto Star and the Knoxville News-Sentinel.