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Gospel Music Artists Expand Profits To Reality TV

The Tankards, cast of Bravo TV's "Thicker Than Water"

The Tankards, cast of Bravo TV’s “Thicker Than Water” Photo courtesy of Bravo TV

Gospel music recording artists and preachers are expanding their profits beyond the music and church and are cashing in with faith-based reality TV.

Deitrick Haddon, Kierra Sheard, Ben Tankard and Mary Mary are four successful gospel music recording artists who have increased their revenues through reality TV.

According to Nielsen ratings, Haddon’s Preacher’s of LA (Oxygen Network), Sheard’s The Sheards (BET), Tankard’s Thicker Than Water (Bravo TV) and Mary Mary’s show Mary Mary (WeTV) have all garnered large audiences.

Preachers of L.A. was one of the highest rated new series on Oxygen among 25-54 year olds when it debuted in 2013. According to TVbythenumbers.com its average audience has been over one million per episode.

Bravo states that Thicker Than Water ‘s January 2014 finale episode reached 2.2 million viewers making it the highest rated episode of any new show on the network.

The Sheards’ 2013 series premiere and encore drew an audience of 2 million.

According to tv by the numbers, Mary Mary’s show delivered an equally impressive audience of one million with its season three 2014 premiere.

Although gospel artists have found monetary success and mainstream acceptance beyond gospel music in reality TV, it has come at a cost. They’ve received backlash from key people in the Christian community. Mega church pastor, movie producer and best selling author, Bishop T.D. Jakes criticized the cast of Preachers Of LA for flaunting lavish lifestyles.

Such faith-based reality shows starring gospel music artists have indeed been criticized. However, their high ratings prove people are tuning in the tune of millions and that there is an audience for what goes on behind the scenes in the lives of gospel music artists. And gospel music artists are taking this newly found success all the way to the bank.

Has this move by gospel music artists to reality TV for profit been a good thing? Should gospel artists stay in their “hallelujah church lane” and leave the secular world and its money alone? Or, is it “all good?”

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One comment on “Gospel Music Artists Expand Profits To Reality TV

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