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‘The Most Special Moment in My Life at the Dove Awards’—TobyMac Wins for Album That Followed His Son’s Death

TobyMac
TobyMac at the 2023 Dove Awards. Photo by Jesse T. Jackson

Toby McKeehan, whose stage name is TobyMac, was awarded Pop/Contemporary Album of the Year at the 54th annual Dove Awards for his album “Life After Death” just days before the fourth anniversary of his son Truett’s unexpected death.

“Life After Death” was released in August 2022 and was McKeehan’s first album since Truett’s accidental drug overdose in 2019.

McKeehan has won over 20 Dove Awards throughout his solo career, which followed the hiatus of his iconic Christian band DC Talk in 2001.

ChurchLeaders asked McKeehan what winning this award meant to him. “It is definitely the most special moment in my life at the Dove Awards,” he replied.

“How could it not be, right? I mean, you know, you journey through this thing and you try not to just fold up the tent and walk,” McKeehan said, crediting God for meeting him where he was, as well as his friends in the Christian music industry, who surrounded him and his family in their time of need. Some of those friends helped him create the album, he said.

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“Anybody that ever tells you there’s a lot of cut-throat, slashing in CCM, or gospel, or worship, or hip hop, I don’t believe it,” he said, adding, “I’ve been here longer than all y’all.”

McKeehan described the Christian music industry as “a beautiful family” and said that he is “super grateful for those that came around me and walked with me through this.” He said that this award is so special to him that it will be at the “center of my piano in my house.”

McKeehan was asked what advice he would give to someone who is facing a situation similar to what he and his family had faced in losing a child.

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“Everybody grieves differently,” McKeehan responded. “The only advice I would have is you might question God’s sovereignty and I think you need to. I think you need to figure out that God gives and takes away, and you have to be okay with that. And once you’re okay with that, I think your faith actually increases greatly.”