Sing Of Mary
GRETCHEN HARRIS, the Unity Award winner for "Female Vocalist of the Year" 2006, is a singer/songwriter who expresses through her music her deep love for God and Church. Songs from her six CDs can be heard on Christian radio stations in the United States and in many other countries, in addition to the worldwide radio outreach of EWTN.
Gretchen was honored with the 2002 Unity Award for "Pop/Contemporary Album of the Year" for her CD "Hope for Tomorrow." In 2001, she was nominated for "New Artist of the Year." Gretchen's previous awards from the UCMVA were "Song of the Year" and "Video of the Year" for the song "This Is My Body" with the Irish singer DANA.
Recent television appearances include a half hour concert showcase on the new EWTN series BACKSTAGE and singing on Dana's series WE ARE ONE BODY. Gretchen has also performed in the "Keeping the Faith Alive Tour" with HeartBeat Records.
Gretchen ministers through concerts, speaking engagements, and radio programs, performing most recently in Washington DC, Toronto, Brazil, Florida, and her hometown of Los Angeles.
In addition to her vocation as wife and mother of three children, Gretchen enjoys reaching out to others through her music ministry. She has produced an album of her gifted church choirs from Redondo Beach, California, and is busy ministering with her newest release, SING TO THE LORD.
"SING OF MARY" ----
UCMVA "PRAISE & WORSHIP ALBUM OF THE YEAR" NOMINEE
Gretchen Harris has a strong devotion to the Blessed Mother, and while on pilgrimage in 1991, she received a special sign calling her to sing songs of Mary.
The album that came from that experience is “Sing of Mary,” Gretchen's second album. It was nominated for “Praise and Worship Album of the Year” by the United Catholic Music and Video Association.
“Sing of Mary” is a beautiful collection of eleven favorite Marian songs. It takes the listener on a peaceful journey of music written in devotion to Mary. Some songs are centuries old; some are from the present day. The styles are varied, ranging from pop to classical to Gregorian chant.
The album begins with Bob Hurd's classic “Be It Done Unto Me,” a song about Mary's “yes” to God. The introspective “Breath of Heaven (Mary's Song),” written by Amy Grant and Chris Eaton, is Mary's prayer for God to give her strength to handle whatever may come as she surrenders to His will. And “Sweet Mary” is a tender rendition of the Hail Mary prayer.
Guitars, congas, and guest vocalist Michael Miller comprise the musical setting for “Hail Mary, Gentle Woman.” This recording of the well-known Marian song is well-liked for its driving beat and joyful sound. The traditional Irish melody of “I Sing a Maid” has been given a very peaceful, meditational mood in this unique interpretation, telling of the life of Mary.
Franz Schubert's “Ave Maria” is presented here with piano and vocal; it is simple and beautiful, and it allows Gretchen to use her training in classical music. “Immaculate Mary” is offered with guitars and mandolin, creating a very pleasant sound. The album's title track, “Sing of Mary,” begins with Gretchen singing a capella. An addition of instrumentation follows, including congas, flute, and piccolo.
“Mother Mary” is a contemporary original by husband and wife team Joe and Athena Will. It has a modern flavor in it's music and vocals, adding to the wonderful variety of the album. Another traditional favorite, “Hail, Holy Queen,” is sung with conviction amidst flute, organ, and piano.
The album concludes with the prayerful Gregorian chant version of the “Ave Maria.” Gretchen's recording of this song was used in the EWTN documentary tour of the Holy Land, “Path of the Messiah.”
In gratitude and love for the Blessed Mother, Gretchen offers this special album to her.
"SING OF MARY" REVIEWS ----
by David Wang, writer:
Gretchen has a sweet disposition and was one of the nicest artists I met at the CAM conference. This sweetness carries over to her vocals on this excellent collection of Marian songs. Almost all of my favorite songs are here, ranging from the modern in Breath of Heaven and Hail Mary Gentle Woman to the traditional in Ave Maria and Immaculate Mary. The arrangements are clever and add interest to these covers. A wonderful effort and will appeal to almost anyone.
One of the greatest stories in the Bible is the love that the Mother had for the Son. Mary is such a awesome model for ALL mankind. It is the kind of love we should have towards God. Unconditional love! Gretchen Harris has captured a snippet of this love in her CD, Sing Of Mary. She has such a classic sound--- Windham Hill-ish, and she should. She was in the Loyola Marymount University Chorus. Her trained vocals comes in loudly on "I Sing A Maid," one of the many songs on this CD that tells the story of Our Lady. The CD is full of classic Marian tunes like "Ave Maria", "Hail Mary, Gentle Woman", and "Immaculate Mary". Gretchen's voice mixes with stunning classic guitar, flutes and piano. Gretchen says it best in the song "Sweet Mary:" "Sweet Mary, in you I see God's Love..."
Marian Tribute for a New Millennium!
by Deacon Jim Cummings from Sherman Oaks, California:
What an absolute joy! Gretchen's voice is clear, pure & pleasant as she sings both old and new favorites. The songs are performed with a perfect balance of piety and quiet passion with excellent accompaniment. Her "Hail Mary, Gentle Woman" rocks!
Beautiful, extremely beautiful
Reviewer: Ogonna Chinedu-Eze
I love every bit of the songs and the way there are rendered. I' m here in Nigeria, is it possible to get a copy of the album? If yes, how.
Reviewer: Paul Buckman
I love this CD. I bought a copy for my mother as well. A wonderful devotion to our Blessed Mother, and yes, as everyone else has already mentioned, I love Gretchen's voice. Very spiritual / emotional. You can tell she means what she is singing about. The "mark" of a true musician. THank you Gretchen for your gift of music !
Love it, her voice is beautiful.
I love this cd and listen to it every day, Her Gentle Woman version is lively and inspirational. I highly recommend this tape with songs of Mary.
Wonderful version of "Hail Mary, Gentle Woman"...
Reviewer: Rosa Wright
This CD was better than I expected. We'd been looking for the song "Hail Mary, Gentle Woman" for a while. I found it on your web site and was extremely pleased at Gretchen Harris' version and the rest of her CD. Might I mention that the customer service I received was wonderful and rare in this day and age. Thank you.
Reviewer: Jim Conrad
When my Mother died suddenly nearly four years ago I learned that Hail Mary, Gentle Woman was her favorite song and it was played at her funeral. Gretchen's rendition sends chills down my spine it is so great and listening to it enables me to recall such fond and loving memories of my Mother. I am happy to have discovered this. Thank you and God Bless!
It's part of my personal discovery of who Mother Mary is to me!
Reviewer: I. O'Malley
This CD is an important part of my spiritual journey in the arms of Mary. I am finding out myself who Mary is as my spiritual mother and who Mary was as Jesus' mother this year. This CD is helping me introduce her to my 3 children. I wish I had this CD as a child.