Insights into personal lives leaves the Christian music industry in shock

A NUMBER of revelations into the personal lives of American CCM stars have shaken observers of the fast growing Christian music industry. It has been reported that the keyboard player with popular band All Star United, Patrick McCallum, has been asked to leave the band after making his girlfriend pregnant. However, McCallum claims that he wasn't "kicked out" and was told he "could come back at any time."

In another shock, singer Nikki Leonti, whose self-titled debut album was released by Pamplin Records, had to leave the 1999 Freedom Blast Tour when she became pregnant after a relationship with Ryan Gingerich of the band Scarecrow & Tinmen. She has now married Gingerich and issued the following statement, "I have put myself in a compromising position that will affect the rest of my life. In a weak moment, my husband and I made a poor decision prior to our marriage that resulted in my becoming pregnant. There were many choices that Ryan and I could have made in this situation, but with prayerful consideration we both felt that moving our wedding date up was the right decision for us. Ryan and I both realise that we will always live with the consequences of this and are sorry for the pain and disappointment we have caused those whose lives we have touched. We are thankful for the love and support we have received from our families, Pamplin Music, Muse Management and the William Morris Agency, and we ask for your prayers as we continue to seek restoration and healing."

CCM star Clay Crosse has now gone on record confessing he had numerous extra marital relationships while touring. He said recently in CCM Update, "I believe my walk with God should be a constant effort to be more like him with each passing day. Sadly, I know there have been times when this wasn't my goal." The singer has now fully repented and sings about a deeper relationship with God on his new album.
Michael English faces investigation into illegal drug use. The 37-year-old artist is being treated for an addiction to prescription medication and depression drugs, reported The Nashville Tennessean. He may face charges of fraudulently obtaining drugs after police found 'assorted pills and vials' and two blank prescription sheets when they searched his apartment earlier this month, said the newspaper. More than 80 prescriptions had been filed for English and an acquaintance since April 1997, mostly for the sedative hydrocone, which is similar to codeine. English quit Christian music in 1994, just a week after being named Artist of the Year and winning six Dove Awards, when his affair with Christian singer Marabeth Jordan was revealed. He returned to the scene 18 months ago, telling Charisma Magazine last year he had been restored. "All my secrets are in the open," he said then. In a statement issued as we went to press, English said that he began taking pain medication after an injury a few years ago. He continued using it "for other physical pains I was having - which I now believe some were real and some were psychosomatic." His attorney, David Raybin, told the Tennessean yesterday that the matter was under investigation, but no charges had been filed so far. CR

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