Crystal Lewis

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Crystal Lewis
Birth nameCrystal Lynn Lewis
Also known asCrystal Lewis Ray
Born (1969-09-11) September 11, 1969 (age 53)
Corona, California, U.S.
Genres Contemporary Christian, gospel, jazz, pop rock, contemporary worship [1]
Occupation(s)Singer, songwriter, actress
Years active1986–present

Crystal Lynn Lewis (born September 11, 1969) is an American contemporary Christian and jazz singer, songwriter and actress.


Lewis has been nominated for several Grammy Awards, and has won multiple GMA Dove Awards. [2] Additionally, she has released numerous CCM chart-topping hits. [3]

Lewis reached a commercial peak with her Billboard Top 5 albums: “Let Love In” (1990), "Beauty for Ashes" (1996), "Gold" (1998) and the Grammy-nominated Fearless (2000), which inspired young future superstars like Katy Perry and Tori Kelly. [4]

Early life and career

Crystal Lewis was born in Corona, California (where she grew up singing in her father's church). [5] [6] In 1984, at the age of 15, Lewis auditioned for a children's musical film called Hi Tops . It was written and produced by Ernie and Debby Rettino, creators of Psalty, the Singing Song Book. She passed the audition, and was able to go into the studio to participate on the soundtrack recording, with the rest of the cast members.[ citation needed ]

While working on the musical, Lewis met a member of the rockabilly band The Lifters. After becoming friends with the band members, Lewis was asked to join. Soon after, the band changed its name to Wild Blue Yonder. [7] Wild Blue Yonder was together for two years, and recorded a single full-length album, Wild Blue Yonder. It was produced by Daniel Amos front man Terry Scott Taylor, for Frontline Records in 1986. Lewis also sang on D.A.'s album Fearful Symmetry in 1986, and Taylor's solo album A Briefing for the Ascent in 1987.

After Wild Blue Yonder disbanded, Frontline offered Lewis a solo recording contract at the age of 17. [5] Her first solo project, Beyond the Charade, was released in 1987. It featured the song "Breakdown", written by musician Jon Gibson. In 1988, Lewis sang a duet with Gibson called "Lost Inside of You", from his successful Change of Heart album (also released via Frontline Records). [8]

In 1992, Lewis worked in the sketch comedy television series Roundhouse , which aired on Nickelodeon . [9] In 1996, Lewis released her Myrrh Records debut, Beauty for Ashes. The album included three CCM chart-topping singles, including "People Get Ready (Jesus Is Comin')", which was honored with Song of the Year. Her next album, Gold, followed in 1998. [10] Lewis was also featured on Kirk Franklin's hit song, "Lean on Me" in 1998. [11] In 2000, Lewis returned with Fearless and the Christmas album, Holiday! A Collection of Christmas Classics . [12] In 2015, her self-titled album Crystal Lewis was released, and the soulful jazz album Rhapsody followed in 2019. [13]

In May 2022, Lewis released Together We Can, an album with guest artists and duets. [14] The pop, soul and jazz record features Ty Herndon, Nikki Leonti, Kate Flannery, Tori Kelly, Ally Brooke , Lia Booth and others. She also sings with her adult children, Solomon and Isabella. "I Can't Help It" was the debut single released from the album. [15]

Personal life

Lewis previously lived in Montana with then-husband Brian Ray, with whom she has two children, who were homeschooled. [6] Lewis and Ray divorced after 28 years of marriage, and she now lives in California. [16]

Her daughter, Isabella (Izzi Ray), is also a singer and songwriter. [17] Her son, Solomon, also pursued a career in music. He produced his mother's 2011 release, Plain and Simple. [18]


[19] [20] [21]


Film roles
1985 Hi-Tops Lily from the Valley
2005The 7th CommandmentLil ReginaShort film
2010The WyldsThe Gatekeeper
2013Treasure StateJoan Hogue
Television roles
1984 Colby's Clubhouse N/AEpisode: "Crystal Is a Guest"
1992 Roundhouse Various13 episodes
2015 Praise the Lord Herself / PerformerEpisodes: "Episode April 1, 2015" & "Episode September 17, 2015"

Awards and nominations

GMA Dove Awards

YearCategoryNominated workResult
1998 Female Vocalist of the YearWon
Spanish Language Album of the YearLa Belleza de la CruzWon
1999 Female Vocalist of the YearNominated
Spanish Language Album of the YearOro(tied with Sandi Patty)Won
Special Event Album of the YearExodus(shared with dcTalk, Jars of Clay, Sixpence None the Richer, Cindy Morgan, Chris Rice, The Katinas, Third Day & Michael W. Smith )Won
2017Song of the Year"Even If" (shared with Bart Millard, Ben Glover, David Garcia & Tim Timmons) [22] Nominated
Pop/Contemporary Recorded Song of the Year"Even If" [22] Nominated

Additional awards

1993 Young Artist Awards Outstanding Young Ensemble Cast in a Youth Series or Variety Show Roundhouse (shared with cast)Won
1999 Soul Train Music Awards Best R&B/Soul Single – Male "Lean on Me" (as featured artist)Nominated
Grammy Awards Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals Nominated
2001 Best Pop/Contemporary Gospel Album Fearless Nominated

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