Saved by Beauty: The Sacred/Pop Art of Colleen Nixon

By Blogger Tom Neal, PhD

If you want to hear what ‘faith seeking music’ might sound like, give ear to my take on a wildly talented young woman whose gift of music has the power to lift hearts in a most extraordinary manner.

Colleen Nixon is an up-and-coming music artist who weaves truth, goodness and beauty into sacred and secular music genres, giving her electrifying repertoire a definite, awe-full and heart-touching power.

The Latest

Colleen right now is getting set to release her second full-length solo album entitled “Lake Ella’s Sky.”  Its sound is comparable to something you would hear on the radio from a Norah Jones, or a Sara Barelias.  This 12 song album is all about what any good pop/jazz/indie/folk genre album is about: life and love. But if you listen just a little closer, your heart’s ear may pick up on lyrics inspired by a heart deeply in love with Love Himself.

Colleen says it this way,

As an artist, I know that I have a particular part to play in sharing God with the world.  I think it is the same obligation of all artists who have received their gift from God… to use it to show more people who He is.

Style and Substance

Unlike most contemporary songs on the radio, these songs flow from a rich and authentic anthropology, a true personalist vision of the dignity and vocation of the human person. Personalism affirms that human beings, never to be used by others, are created in God’s image to love and to be loved, and Colleen’s music gives voice to that supremely dignified vocation.

This much depth, combined with the high quality of the sound mixes, offers some truly beautiful art.

Oh, and its fun to listen to also!

Sacred Song

As I mentioned earlier, Colleen is somewhat of a “hybrid” recording artist. In addition to these 2 pop cd’s now out (the first one, released in 2009, is entitled “Love is in the Details”), she has 2 other cd’s taken from a much different musical genre: sacred song.

Colleen is the singing voice of internationally acclaimed music group Marian Grace, and has written a handful of songs featured on the first two Marian Grace albums.

The Marian Grace style is an exquisite intertwining of the ancient Catholic tradition of prayers and hymns, blended with Colleen’s classically trained yet strikingly contemporary vocals. Her music is, in my judgment, not just professionally excellent but spiritually anointed.

These albums have received very high praise from Catholic and Christian leaders, and from various other circles all around the world. I would argue that her music is sui generis, a ‘one of a kind,’ as it unites ancient and new in ways I have never before encountered.

A comment I received by email after Colleen put on a sacred music concert in Iowa this past January sums it for me:

Her concert wasn’t a performance, it was prayer. And it remains in me as an ongoing prayer.

In Sum

Although Colleen goes under 2 different artist names to distinguish her musical endeavors, her identity is always the same:

I always hope that God uses both mediums, my pop music and my sacred music, to touch those who need it.  I am blessed to hear back from fans of each style, saying how a particular word, or a particular note, spoke to their heart in that moment.   My hope is that I can be faithful in authentically sharing my heart, through my art, with the world. And hopefully by encountering my music, they can encounter the source of my joy as well!

I highly encourage you, during this Year of Faith, to allow Colleen’s music to lend new beauty and joy to your Faith in the all-glorious God. Be sure to click on those hyperlinked words above for more details.

…oh, and sign up here for mailing list and receive notice when her new cd, “Lake Ella’s Sky,” becomes available.

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