Bebo Norman announces his retirement from music at the end of 2013

Critically acclaimed singer-songwriter Bebo Norman has announced his retirement from the music scene by the end of 2013.

The decision comes "after a lot of prayer and continued conversation" with his wife Roshare.

"I don't know that I really feel called to something else as much as I feel called away from music," he explained.

Lights of Distant Cities, released on 23 October 2012, is the last of his nine albums.

"Everything that I had left in my heart for music, I feel like I squeezed out and emptied into writing and recording this latest project, which I love so dearly," he says.

The LP features his close friend and long-time live collaborator, multi-instrumentalist Gabe Scott.

Welcomed by fans, the album is the perfect finishing piece to his 20-year-long career as a musician

And it's a career he can be proud of. Back in 2001, his album Big Blue Sky was voted the No 1 Christian album of 2001 by the editors at Amazon.

Then in 2002, Myself When I Am Real earned seven Dove Award nods. In 2008, Bebo received a Dove Award for "Inspirational Recorded Song" for his song "The Only Hope" from this self-titled project.

In just a few days' time, on 19 April, Bebo will be releasing his ultimate radio single "Sing of Your Glory".

"I'm still not even certain how I got here, how I landed on this particular course as an artist, but I do know that it wouldn't have happened without the willingness of people all over the world to be a part of this with me. I will be forever grateful," he said.

Bebo's fans will be able to see him on tour one last time throughout the summer and fall. His long-time friends and musical counterparts Andrew Peterson and Sara Groves will join him on stage.