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With a voice as big as Whitney or Mariah, Dove Award-winning vocalist Crystal Lewis was synonymous with Christian music in the ’90s, producing a string of radio hits, including “God’s Been Good to Me,” “Beauty from Ashes” and “People Get Ready… Jesus Is Comin’.” However, as the decade of Christian music’s heyday closed, and technology began to evolve causing CD sales to decline, Lewis found herself at a crossroads.

Since the late ’80s when she signed her first record deal, she had been recording and touring non-stop. She and husband Brian Ray founded their own label in 1992 to launch new artists, and in the meantime, they also had two children. Still, road life began to take its toll on Lewis and her family, so they decided to make an unconventional move from their longtime home of California to the open skies of Montana.

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Crystal Lewis’ Second Act  was originally published on