Carman (singer)

Last updated

Carman in concert cropped.jpg
Carman in 2010
Background information
Birth nameCarmelo Domenic Licciardello
Born(1956-01-19)January 19, 1956
Trenton, New Jersey, U.S.
DiedFebruary 16, 2021(2021-02-16) (aged 65)
Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S
InstrumentsVocals, guitar
Years active1982–2021

Carmelo Domenic Licciardello (January 19, 1956 – February 16, 2021), known by his stage name Carman, was an American contemporary Christian music singer, songwriter, television host, life coach, [1] and evangelist.


Early life

An Italian American, Carman was born in Trenton, New Jersey. [2] As a child he performed in his mother's band; as a teen, he found some success performing at casinos in Atlantic City, New Jersey. [3]

While attending an Andraé Crouch concert, he became a born again Christian, and embraced evangelical Christianity. [3] [4]


In 1980, he made a custom album titled God's Not Finished with Me. The following year, he was invited by Bill Gaither to tour with The Bill Gaither Trio. [5]

After relocating to Tulsa, Oklahoma, he released a moderately successful eponymous debut album (later issued as Some-o-Dat) [2] in 1982 [6] —which contained mostly novelty songs. Then, with the release of the album Sunday's on the Way in 1983, a string of contemporary Christian music chart successes started, beginning with the title song. As he continued his music career, he established the nonprofit organization Carman Ministries. [2] With the 1985 release of The Champion came his first number-one song, of the same name. His first number one album on Christian charts, Revival in the Land, followed in 1989. [3]

Between 1987 and 1989, he was named Charisma magazine's readers' choice for favorite male vocalist. [6] In 1990 and 1992, Billboard named him the Contemporary Christian Artist of the Year. [3] In 1995, he translated some of his songs into and released his first Spanish-language album, Lo Mejor. Heart of a Champion, a 30-song retrospective was released in 2000. [6]

He was nominated for four Grammys and sold over 10 million records. [3] It is believed he holds the world record for the largest single Christian concert in history. [3] In the first, he was the main act in August 1993 in Johannesburg, South Africa, with more than 50,000 in attendance. [7] The following year he performed a free concert at Texas Stadium October 22, 1994, with 71,132 attendees, [2] [6] and 80,000 in Chattanooga, Tennessee. [8]

Beyond his music career, he participated in various television productions and interview duties as a host for both the Trinity Broadcasting Network in general and its flagship program Praise the Lord . [9] In 2001, Carman starred in the film Carman: The Champion. [2] [10]

In late March 2013, he announced a Kickstarter campaign for a new album and music video. A short time later, he announced an upcoming 60-city tour, as well, additionally noting that the online fundraising campaign had raised more than $230,000 within several weeks. [11]

Personal life

In November 2011, Carman was the passenger in a car that was struck by a truck from oncoming traffic. The accident took place just outside the church where his appearance was scheduled. He performed the concert, but collapsed afterward and required surgery to repair internal injuries. [12]

Carman began battling cancer, multiple myeloma, in 2013, and he was given a prognosis of three to four years to live. [13] [14] By early 2014, he said, medical tests indicated his body was free of cancer. He then continued preparing for his Live Across America album and tour. [15] When the cancer went into remission, he attributed his healing to the faith of his fans. [3] He pledged to his Facebook and Kickstarter supporters to begin his "No Plan B Tour" as soon as he regained his health. [16] Later that year he toured the eastern United States. [16]

In December 2017, at the age of 61, Carman married Dana. His new family included six stepchildren and nine step-grandchildren. [17]

In January 2020, Carman announced his cancer had returned. [18] He resumed live concert church tours in June 2020. [19] He died on February 16, 2021, at a Las Vegas, Nevada, hospital after a series of complications resulting from surgery to repair a hiatal hernia, 28 days after his 65th birthday. [3] [20]

Discography and filmography

Source(s): [21] [22] [ additional citation(s) needed ]

Selected list

Awards and nominations

Grammy Awards
YearCategoryNominated workResultSource
1987Best Gospel Performance – Duo, Group, Choir or Chorus"Our Blessed Saviour Has Come" (with CeCe Winans)Nominated [23]
1992 Best Pop/Contemporary Gospel Album Shakin' the House...Live (with Commissioned with the Christ Church Choir)Nominated [24]
1993Addicted to JesusNominated [24]
1999Mission 3:16Nominated [24]
GMA Dove Awards
YearCategoryNominated workResultSource
1989 Long Form Music Video of the Year Live: Radically SavedWon [25]
1991Long Form Video of the YearRevival in the LandWon [25]
1991Short Form Video of the Year"Revival in the Land"Won [25]
1993Long Form Video of the YearAddicted To JesusWon [25]
1995Children's Music Album of the YearYo! Kidz! 2: The Armor Of GodWon [25]
1996 Rap/Hip Hop Song of the Year "R.I.O.T. (Righteous Invasion of Truth)"Won [25]
1999 Long Form Music Video of the Year Mission 3:16 The VideoNominated[ citation needed ]

Carman was inducted into the Gospel Music Hall of Fame in 2018. [26]

Related Research Articles

Amy Grant American musician

Amy Lee Grant is an American singer, songwriter, musician, author and media personality. She is known for performing contemporary Christian music (CCM) and for a successful crossover to pop music in the 1980s and 1990s. She has been referred to as "The Queen of Christian Pop".

Michael W. Smith American musician and songwriter

Michael Whitaker Smith is an American musician who has charted in both contemporary Christian and mainstream charts. His biggest success in mainstream music was in 1991 when "Place in This World" hit No. 6 on the Billboard Hot 100. Over the course of his career, he has sold more than 18 million albums.

Anointed is a contemporary Christian music duo from Columbus, Ohio, known for their strong vocals and harmonies, featuring siblings Steve Crawford and Da'dra Crawford Greathouse, along with former members Nee-C Walls and Mary Tiller. Their musical style includes elements of R&B, pop, rock, funk and piano ballads. The group has won seven Dove Awards, two Stellar Awards and three Grammy Award nominations. The group has also been featured on several Christian compilation albums such as Real Life Music, 1996 and WOW The 90s.

Bill Gaither (gospel singer)

William James Gaither is an American singer and songwriter of Southern gospel and contemporary Christian music. He has written numerous popular Christian songs with his wife Gloria; he is also known for performing as part of the Bill Gaither Trio and the Gaither Vocal Band (GVB). In the 1990s, his career gained a resurgence, as popularity grew for the Gaither Homecoming series.

Gaither Vocal Band

The Gaither Vocal Band is an American southern gospel vocal group, named after its founder and leader Bill Gaither. On March 1, 2017, it was announced that the Gaither Vocal Band lineup consisted of Reggie Smith, Wes Hampton, Adam Crabb, Todd Suttles, and Bill Gaither. Although the group started out recording contemporary Christian music in the 1980s, it became known for southern gospel after the popularity of the Gaither Homecoming videos.

Michael Tait

Michael DeWayne Tait is a contemporary Christian music artist. Michael Tait met Toby McKeehan in 1984 when he was in high school. Both Toby and Michael met Kevin Max while attending Liberty University in the late 1980s, and together they formed four-time Grammy winning band DC Talk, with whom Michael Tait has released five acclaimed studio albums. Tait is the current lead singer of Newsboys, and one third of Christian rock group DC Talk. Tait also has had success in his solo career, founding a band called Tait in 1997. He toured as a solo act until 2007. He became lead singer of the Christian pop rock band Newsboys in 2009. Aside from singing, Tait is also a self-taught guitar player. Tait also has a sister Lynda Randle, who is a Southern Gospel singer.

Larnelle Harris American musician

Larnelle Steward Harris is an American gospel singer and songwriter. During his 40-plus years of ministry, Harris has recorded 18 albums, won five Grammy Awards and 11 Dove Awards, and has had several number one songs on the inspirational music charts.

Steve Green (singer)

Steve Green is an American Christian music singer, notable for his tenor vocal range and flexible solo style. Over his 35-year career, Green has been honored as a four-time Grammy Award nominee, seven-time Dove Award winner and was inducted in to the Gospel Music Hall of Fame in 2017. He has had 13 No. 1 songs, and has sold over three million albums.

Jessy Dixon was an American gospel music singer, songwriter, and pianist, with success among audiences across racial lines. He garnered seven Grammy award nominations during his career.

Russ Taff

Russell Taff is an American gospel singer and songwriter who grew up in Farmersville, California. He has sung a variety of musical styles throughout his career including: pop rock, traditional southern gospel, contemporary country music, and rhythm and blues. He first gained recognition as lead vocalist for the Imperials (1976–81). One of his best-known performances is the song "Praise the Lord". He has also been a member of the Gaither Vocal Band, and occasionally tours with Bill Gaither in the Gaither Homecoming concerts. As a solo artist and songwriter, Taff is known for the 1980s anthem "We Will Stand". Taff has received various Dove and Grammy awards either as a solo artist or part of a larger musical group, most notably the Imperials.

The Martins are a Christian music vocal trio composed of three siblings: Joyce Martin Sanders, Jonathan Martin, and Judy Martin Hess.

Guy Penrod

Guy Allen Penrod is a gospel music singer. He is known for his work as the lead singer of the Gaither Vocal Band, a position he held from 1994 to 2008.

Michael English (American singer)

Michael English is an American Christian singer and record producer. Initially, he was a member of his family's singing group, and later a member of The Gaither Vocal Band. During his solo career, he recorded eight studio albums. English's highest-charting solo single was "Your Love Amazes Me", which reached No. 10 on the Adult Contemporary chart in 1996.

Janet Paschal

Janet Paschal is an inspirational gospel vocalist. She has released numerous albums in that genre and has received multiple fan awards and Grammy and Dove Award nominations. She is also a songwriter and published author. In May 2019, she was inducted into the Gospel Music Association Hall of Fame in Nashville, Tennessee.

David Phelps (musician)

David Norris Phelps is an American Christian music vocalist, songwriter and vocal arranger, who is best known for singing tenor in the Gaither Vocal Band. He has also released several solo albums, including four Christmas collections. On January 13, 2008, Phelps appeared on Extreme Makeover Home Edition for the Woodhouse family.

David Mullen (singer)

David Mullen is a former Blues Pop / CCM singer, songwriter and musician. Later he became well known as a songwriter, music producer, and film score composer. He released his first album in 1989, and won the GMA Dove Award for New Artist of the Year in 1990. He later recorded his last album in 1994. Since then, he has written and produced recordings for several other Christian artists, most notably Nicole C. Mullen.

Marshall Hall (singer)

Marshall Hall is an American singer, songwriter, and producer. He is best known for his time as a member of the Gaither Vocal Band, his appearances on the Bill Gaither Homecoming tours, and Gaither Homecoming video series.

Reba Rambo is an American Christian singer and songwriter. She is a Grammy and Dove Award winner.

This is a discography for the contemporary Christian music artist Carman.

The 25th Annual GMA Dove Awards were held on April 28, 1994, recognizing accomplishments of musicians for the year 1993. The show was held at the Grand Ole Opry House in Nashville, Tennessee, and was hosted by Amy Grant.


  1. Law, Jeannie (April 14, 2017). "Carman Licciardello Cancer Update: Singer Fulfills Dream of Becoming Life Coach Before Upcoming Tumor Surgery". The Christian Post . Retrieved September 7, 2018.
  2. 1 2 3 4 5 Alfonso, Barry (2002). The Billboard guide to Contemporary Christian Music. New York: Billboard Books. p. 134. ISBN   978-0-8230-7718-2.
  3. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Silliman, Daniel. "Died: Carman, Christian Showman Who Believed in Celebrity and Spectacle for Jesus". Christianity Today . Retrieved February 17, 2021.
  4. Daniels, Lisa (October 30, 1992). "Carman is Born (Again) to Boogie". Daily Press.
  5. Powell, Mark Allan (2002). Encyclopedia of Contemporary Christian Music . Hendrickson Publishers. pp.  141–43. ISBN   1-56563-679-1.
  6. 1 2 3 4 Ankeny, Jason. "Carman – Biography". Allmusic (Macrovision Corporation). Retrieved December 9, 2009.
  7. van Jaarsveld, Ingrid. "Christene laat dak lig vir vrede 50 000 op Wanderers vir grootste vredesbyeenkoms nog in SA" [Christians Raise the Roof for Peace: 50,000 at Wanderers] (in Afrikaans). Archived from the original on March 4, 2016.
  8. "Christian Music Pioneer Carman Dies Due to Complications from Surgery". February 17, 2021. Retrieved February 17, 2021.
  9. Dunn, Patrick (February 25, 2005). "Christian Artist Carman Keeps Up With the Times". Albuquerque Journal . Retrieved December 9, 2009.
  10. Cling, Carol (March 2, 2001). "Opening This week". Las Vegas Review-Journal . Retrieved December 9, 2009.
  11. "Carman Announces 60-City Tour After Raising More Than $200K on Kickstarter". Christian Post.
  12. "Carman in Car Accident". All Access Music Group. Retrieved November 22, 2011.
  13. "Carman Licciardello". Facebook.
  14. "Carman Cancer Update: Singer Enters Second Round of Chemo Treatments, 'I've Never Been as Optimistic in My Life'". BREATHEcast.
  15. "After Fears, Carman Tells Fans He's Cancer Free".
  16. 1 2 "Concerts, events, concert, festival & conference tickets".
  17. Law, Jeannie (December 19, 2017). "'Proverbial Bachelor' and Christian Star Carman Licciardello Finally Gets Married at 61". The Christian Post . Retrieved September 7, 2018.
  18. "'I Still Trust God': Christian Singer Carman's Birthday Wish After Cancer Returns". CBN News. January 17, 2020. Retrieved June 24, 2020.
  19. "Carman Licciardello". Retrieved June 24, 2020.
  20. "GMA Gospel Music Hall of Fame Member, CARMAN, Iconic CCM Trailblazer, Dies at Las Vegas Hospital". Conduit Media Solutions. February 16, 2021.
  21. "Carman Discography". Retrieved February 22, 2021.
  22. "Carman". . Retrieved February 22, 2021.
  23. "Grammy Award Nominees 1987 - Grammy Award Winners 1987". Retrieved February 17, 2021.
  24. 1 2 3 "Carman". The Recording Academy. November 23, 2020. Retrieved February 20, 2021.
  25. 1 2 3 4 5 6 "Past Winners". Gospel Music Association . Retrieved February 20, 2021.
  26. "Carman". Gospel Music Hall of Fame. Retrieved April 5, 2018.