Mentors

Our 2018 mentors are listed below.  

Ian Eskelin

Producer/Songwriter

Ian Eskelin is a producer, songwriter, solo artist, and founding member and lead singer of the Grammy-nominated Christian Rock band All Star United.

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He won the Dove Award for “Producer of the Year” in 2011 and 2008, and was nominated for the same award in 2007, 2009, 2010, and 2012. Eskelin also has received multiple Dove nominations for his songwriting and production work working with artists such as Francesca Battistelli, Sidewalk Prophets, Chris August, Hawk Nelson, 7eventh Time Down, Stellar Kart, and Remedy Drive.

As an artist and writer Eskelin has had more than thirty Top 10 singles in the United States, including 14 #1 charting songs. He has additionally had international #1 songs in various countries including Japan, Singapore, and Australia. Ian’s songs have been licensed for use on ABC, Spike TV, Style Network, the movie Soul Surfer, the movie Saved!, the trailer for the film Superbad, NBC promotionals for the show Heroes, and multiple CBS network imaging campaigns to name a few.

Tony Wood

WORD Publishing Songwriter

Tony Wood is one of the most respected and successful songwriters in Christian Music history with 30 #1 songs!

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In addition to having written 29 #1 songs,  Tony has also composed over 700 songs recorded by the biggest artists in the CCM market. Tony was a Dove Award nominee for songwriter of the year, and a multiple Dove Award winner.

Tony continues to show he still writes with relevance in the current musical and lyrical climate having been part of the 2016 hits, “Breathe” by Jonny Diaz and “God is on the Move” by 7eventh Time Down.  Tony has also been a part of many songs known throughout the church with the most well known being, “Jesus, Only Jesus” made popular by the Passion Band.

Benji Cowart

WORD Publishing Songwriter

Benji and his wife Jenna have cut their own songs independently on their albums, as well as on albums by Meredith Andrews, The Isaacs and Selah.

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The song “Rise” was recently recorded by Danny Gokey and went to # 1. They are now on staff at First Baptist Church in Covington LA as worship arts pastors.

Benji also has songs on various albums recorded by Ben Cantelon “Worth It All”, Karen Peck, Aaron Shust, Josh Wilson, City Harmonic, and Big Daddy Weave.

At the 2013 Dove Awards, the song “Redeemed”, co-written with Mike Weaver, was nominated in four different categories. “Redeemed”  had reached #1 on Billboard Christian Charts for several weeks and was certified Gold in 2015 and can be found on Big Daddy Weave’s  album “Love Come To Life,”  along with their second radio single written by Benji, “The Only Name(Yours Will Be) ” which also reached #1 on Billboard charts. Aside from awards or any type of recognition, it is their first desire to write songs that bring encouragement and hope to people through song.  Songs written with the “Church” in mind so the people in that congregation can keep singing new songs.

Rebekah White

WORD Publishing Songwriter

Though Rebekah had a once promising career in pop music, being a mother to her now 5 year old son, took top priority. She began writing/co-writing for other artists to pursue her dreams as a songwriter.

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She signed a publishing deal with Michael Blanton (Amy Grant, Michael W. Smith) of BE Music & Entertainment, in 2012 to further her opportunities as a songwriter.

White has written with producers Clif Magness (Avril Lavigne, Kelly Clarkson), Dapo Torimiro (Justin Bieber, David Archeleto), Jarrod Bettis (One Republic, Adele, Gavin Degraw), Bryan Todd (Ashley Tisdale, David Foster), Pete Amato (The Voice), and Ryan and Smitty (Nicki Minaj, Chris Brown).

She has also written with known songwriters/artists; Robbie Nevil (High School Musical), AJ Lehrman, Shida Kaviani, Richard Harris (Katharine McPhee), Drew Seeley (High School Musical, Another Cinderella Story), Drew Ryniewicz (X-Factor), Taylor Beckham (The Voice), and is currently writing with Ashley Argota (Disney; How to Build a Better Boy, ABC Family; The Fosters, Nickelodeon; True Jackson VP, Bucket & Skinner) for her upcoming album due out sometime this year.

Rebekah co-wrote 2 songs, “Anything” (on itunes now), “Shout Out” (used on episode 2 of Majors & Minors) with David Quinones “DQ” of The Writing Camp, Scotty Granger of Bravo’s “Platinum Hit”, and Justin Grey (Mariah Cary) for the top rated reality series “Majors & Minors” airing on the Hub television network, and had two songs, “I Know it’s too Late,” and “Reach for the Stars,” air on “Dance Moms.”

Rebekah currently has over 30 songs circulating on TV, being played by multiple stations including E entertainment, the Ellen Show, and TMZ, that she co-wrote with Peter Amato, producer on The Voice. She also co-wrote “Music Feels Better” by artist Alexa Aronson, featuring Snoop Dog with multi platinum producer Bryan Todd. the song hit #1 the first week on the Dance Breakout charts, and is currently climbing at #16 on the Billboard Dance charts.

Daniel Doss

WORD Publishing Songwriter

Daniel Doss is a Christian recording artist, published songwriter and worship leader. He has been a staff songwriter with WORD Worship since January 2016.

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Formerly a Sparrow Recording artist with Capitol Records, Daniel is a long time worship leader and is currently leading at Compass Church in Chicago, IL.  His most recent cut is “In The Name Of” released by JJ Weeks Band.

Chris Cleveland

WORD Publishing Songwriter

Chris is an accomplished songwriter from the band “Stars Go Dim.”

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Sometimes, the decision to stop…starts everything. It’s exactly the situation Chris Cleveland found himself in when the previous iteration of his band Stars Go Dim came to a close. What started out as a simple side project, became a successful recording and touring entity, all while Cleveland maintained his “day job” working as a worship leader at a church in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

As the original SGD began to fade, everyday life became more and more integrated into Cleveland’s reality and norm; marriage, two kids, a steady job; a sense of newness and contentment. While Chris knew that music would always be a part of his life, in the stillness of the moment, when touring was no longer his career, he was more able to get focused on the role music would and should have in his life moving forward. And that’s when everything started.

And now, here’s what Stars Go Dim is in 2017 and moving into the future: an immersion of modern pop, infused with both deep meaning and well-honed fun, merging layers of guitars, keys, loops and percussion to convey timeless messages. Over the course of the next two years, Chris began to write and began to play shows again. This is where time and thought, and patience and experimentation, and struggle and innovation all came together for something excellent.

Taylor Agan

Staff Writer-Centricity Publishing

Taylor is a staff songwriter for Centricity Publishing and the Worship Pastor of Redemption City Church in Franklin, TN. He’s 24 years of age and has learned everything he knows from Benji Cowart.

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His songs have been recorded by NorthPoint Inside Out, Local Sound, Sanctus Real & others in the worship, CCM, pop & country world. Taylor is also the managing editor for CentricWorship.com

Jonathan Lee

Word Publishing Songwriter

Jonathan Lee is a passionate worship leader with a heart to lead people into the presence of a holy God. He is the co-writer to the songs Jesus I Surrender, Nothing Less Than All of Me, and Revolution.

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Jonathan is a Dove Award-nominated songwriter and serves as a worship leader in the local church and at national events. He is passionate about writing music to equip, encourage and lead people into the presence of God. As a songwriter, Lee’s credits include songs recorded by Newsboys, Aaron Shust, Laura Story, Travis Cottrell and many more. His most recent successes include “When The Stars Burn Down,” recorded by Phillips, Craig & Dean and “Proof Of Your Love,” recorded by For King And Country which earned him a Dove Award nomination.

 Lee stays on track as his songs continue to match the hearts of men and women to the heart of a loving Savior. Look for Jonathan’s new project from Oak Tree Productions, “Live At Oak Tree” March 2017.

Andrew Bergthold

Music Producer

Andrew has been writing and producing since age 15, starting in his hometown Kansas City Missouri. Bringing music to the local church as a worship leader and songwriter has always been a calling and crucial part of his life.

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In the fall of 2013 while seeking to grow more in the craft of songwriting and production Andrew moved to Nashville for an internship with Ed Cash. Since then the Lord has opened doors beyond what Andrew could dream and he has had the opportunity to work on albums with artist from Phil Wickham to Chris Tomlin to Bethel. Andrew believes the Lord has a unique gifting for each church and he loves working with them to find their sound, message and voice to reach the world.

Daniel Bashta

Pro Songwriter

Daniel Bashta has written songs that have been recorded and sung all over the planet by the Newsboys, Third Day, David Crowder, Passion Band, Jesus Culture and Bethel Music.

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Perhaps best known for penning the worship anthem Like a Lion(Gods Not Dead). Relevant Magazine has said, “Bashta’s music is simultaneously organic and arena-ready, filled with both intimacy and soaring cries to God.” Worship Leader Magazine gave his last record “The Invisible” 5 stars saying “There is something that comes alive in your soul when you hear something clearly outside the popular and proven approaches to worship music. “Bashta’s vocal power passionate yet graceful, It’s Rufus Wainwright meets Keith Green.

Trevor Mathiesen

Publishing & A&R Director at Curb / Word Entertainment

“Trevor Mathiesen has been at Curb|Word Entertainment for 5 years and is currently the Publishing and A&R Director.

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Contributing to the creative process on both the publishing and label side, Trevor is involved daily with song critiques, setting up co-writes, and finding ways to creatively steward Curb|Word’s stable of artists, writers and songs. In addition, he is heavily involved with the administrative side of the business such as copyright, licensing, and business affairs.

Before Curb|Word Entertainment, Trevor spent 11 years working for Christian music artist Michael W. Smith, first as a personal assistant and then as a creative director. His passion for music took him to Middle Tennessee State University where he got his degree in Mass Communications and Production Technology for the Recording Industry. Trevor is a songwriter, guitar player and vocalist and has also been a worship leader for 20 years. He lives in Nashville with his wife and two young daughters.”

Jonathan Mason

Director, WORD Worship

Jonathan Mason is a graduate of the Moody Bible Institute in Chicago, IL and former student of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.

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With the academia background, working within a local church as a music director, and traveling with a nationally touring worship band, Jonathan has developed a deep passion for music ministry. He is currently serving as the director of Word Worship, a label imprint and publisher under Word Entertainment in Nashville, TN.

Derek Brown

Worship Pastor at Crossroads Church

Derek is a full-time worship pastor at Crossroads Church in Aspen, Colorado and has been leading worship for 20 years.

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His responsibilities at the church also include weddings, pre-marital & marriage counseling as well as serving on the Directional Team. He is the president of Mountain Town Music and Publishing and also the founder and director of the Central Rockies Songwriter’s Circle. Derek also enjoys leading his own musical project, The Derek Brown Band.

Among other creative endeavors he is also developing and leading an online church plant (website TBA) designed to reach those who have faith, may have faith and will have faith but have no church home. His vision is to bring Biblical teaching and encouragement to online viewers and eventually connect them to a Christian community in their respective area.

Originally from Crawford Alabama, Derek has lived in Aspen for 25 years. He and his wife, Jennifer have three children. He is passionate about worship, family, songwriting, biking, reading with his kids, and equipping his family and others to lead lives that glorify God. The vast majority of Derek’s calling to lead in the church revolves around his deep desire to remind people that God is accessible.

Paul Herman

Content Creator, CCLI

As a songwriter, worship leader, and a member of the management team, Paul is connected to CCLI in every possible way —songwriter, worship leader and staff member.

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After serving as CCLI’s Marketing Manager/ North America for 14 years, Paul has now assumed the role of Content Creator for CCLI’s Global Marketing Team. For more than a decade, Paul has overseen the steady growth of CCLI’s licenses and services while loving the music, songwriters and artists that CCLI represents.

He now helps create and compile content for CCLI’s web properties, marketing campaigns, communications initiatives and CCLI’s worship resource platform, WorshipFuel. Working with publishers, record labels, songwriters, artists and media members, Paul has established a strong network of content providers to help CCLI encourage and empower worship throughout the world.

Keith Mohr

Creator/Director InspireSong

Over the past 2 decades, Keith Mohr has served thousands of independent songwriters, artists, bands, and musicians.

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Keith founded Indieheaven.com, an online resource for independent artists and grew it to be the leading organization of its kind, developing tools and community for members to self publish and distribute their music.

Keith has owned and operated a commercial recording studio, producing many custom projects, including a popular scripture memorization book/music series. Keith relocated to Nashville, TN in 2003 and created the CIA Summit conferences for independent Christian artists. Currently, Keith produces a popular songwriter contest, Nashville Rising Song. Keith finds opportunities for songs he discovers though his “Nashville Songpitcher” service. Keith is the VP of Artist Relations at Nashville Artist Development, a label services/development company serving artists and songwriters in their music aspirations. Keith is the creator/director of InspireSong.

Sue Mohr

Creative Consultant, The Inner Vizion

Sue has been a Creative Consultant and Project Manager in the field of music and television since 1997 through her company The Inner Vizion.

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She understands the creative process from the inside out. Sue has developed a system called The Discovery Process that guides singer/songwriters, and creatives in building an 18-month plan for effective and financial success in their endeavors. She has managed musicians, including a successful pop/rock Disney trio, traveled the country as a motivational/inspirational speaker, pens articles for a recurring column in Christian Musician Magazine and is a clinician at the Christian Musician Summit. Her goal is to teach not for a moment, but to teach and cause a domino effect for a life-time! You can view her site at theinnervizion.com