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Make a Joyful Noise…Singing Motown to the Messiah

by Cheryl Farrell, Morningside United Church of Christ, April 2, 2012

     The Psalmists were very clear in their instructions to praise the Lord: “Make a joyful noise to the LORD, all the earth; break forth into joyous song and sing praises.” [Psalm 98:4] I take those instructions literally and have done so for more decades than I care to count.

     My singing roots are in the church and I cling to them to this day. My music ministry is a theme of tribute and remembrances with performances at weddings, memorial services and worship services. Gospels, spirituals and hymns are the music genres that I perform most often. My UCC place of worship is Morningside Church in Inglewood, California.

     In professional settings, I’ve performed at historic venues such as the original Motown recording studios, several Broadway stages, Harlem’s Apollo Theater, the pulpit of Ebenezer Baptist Church, and the sound stage of the Jeopardy! quiz show. I’ve had the honor of performing patriotic songs at sports arenas.

     In 2008, Daily Word Magazine published “Making A Joyful Noise,” my story about how church music helped me overcome my son’s difficult birth.

     Music also plays a part in my advocacy. When my son was diagnosed with type 1 (juvenile) diabetes in 2002, I became an advocate for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF). I recorded “Promise To Remember Me,” a ballad written by award- winning composers on behalf of JDRF.

     To promote the “Promise” song and to raise awareness about type 1 diabetes, I created Bay Heart Music. In 2011, I co-produced a music video with an up tempo version of the song performed by young people who live with the disease.

     Bay Heart Music expanded to an online musical “prayer room” for visitors to hear inspirational music messages. Several songs that I wrote are featured in the Bay Heart Music Prayer Room. Other songs were written and performed by friends of the website. I am inspired by music that supports a cause, offer inspiration, or celebrates life.

     In all cases, singing praises to God is the mission. There’s no more important purpose than to let others know (“all the earth”) that there is hope in God who loves us.

Cheryl Farrell is a corporate communications consultant at Cheryl Farrell Communications. She is available for musical and speaking engagements. Her frequent piano accompanist is John Scott. For booking arrangements, please email: cfarrell@bayheartmusic.com

Bay Heart Music Prayer Room Samples below, or visit www.bayheartmusic.com/prayerroom

CHARITY They Are Us (Over There) Contemporary Folk
CHILDREN “Jesus Loves…” Medley Children’s Song
FAITH Cast Myself Away Contemporary Gospel
FRIENDSHIP What A Friend…In Jesus Christian Hymn
GRACE Amazing Grace Christian Hymn
HOPE Come By Here Traditional
HUMILITY My Faith Looks Up to Thee Christian Hymn
PROMISE Blessed Assurance Christian Hymn
RECOGNITION God Loves You and Me Easter Message
WEDDING I Always Knew Wedding Song

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