Singer Francesca Battistelli third album “If We’re Honest” (Fervent Records) bows at No. 2 on Billboard’s Christian Albums chart, with sales of 13,000 copies, according to Nielsen SoundScan.
4 Months Ago
Battistelli’s fans got their first taste of “If We’re Honest” in January when lead single “Write Your Story” went to Christian radio, where it was added by 73 stations the first week, says Rod Riley, head of Fervent parent company Word Entertainment, and eventually hit No. 4 on the Hot Christian Songs chart. “It was something I really wanted to say,” notes Battistelli of the song, which contends that God has a plan for everyone. “It set the tone for the whole record.” The single was further boosted by Battistelli’s Feb. 13 performance on “Good Morning America.” “GMA was a first for her, and it’s not played by many Christian artists, so it was good for our community too,” says Riley.
2 Months Ago
Battistelli’s album got another jolt from her participation in the Bible: Son of God church tour that launched March 20. The tour, which also featured Sidewalk Prophets and Natalie Grant, was based on the History Channel’s “Bible” mini-series and the “Son of God” film. “Write Your Story” was the last song performed every night. “People walked out and they knew Francesca had a new album,” says Riley. “They could even pre-buy it at the merch table as they were walking out.”
Nine days after the tour wrapped, “If We’re Honest” hit stores on April 22. Battistelli partnered with KSBJ Houston, one of the nation’s largest Christian stations, on street date for a “big promotion,” says Battistelli. “I took over their Instagram feed, appeared on their morning and afternoon shows and had a big free concert. About 3,000 people showed up. We really saturated that market.” Battistelli also appeared on “Fox & Friends” on April 25.
Battistelli will perform at Nashville’s Grand Ole Opry on May 10. On June 1, she’ll play the KLOVE Fan Awards, where she’s up for female artist of the year. Riley says there are also plans to launch a new philanthropic campaign around the song “Giants Fall.” A string of summer festival dates and a fall tour will follow, keeping Battistelli booked through 2014. “God will have to create more time in the day,” she says with a laugh.