“Few things give me chills; someone’s extraordinary compassion, unwarranted acts of kindness, gorgeous meaningful music without ego… And, Jonathan Noël when sings.
Have you ever worked with someone who has perfect pitch? It can be intimidating. Jonathan has it, and never once used it as a weapon. Instead; he employed it to sing his own memorable and prolific melodies; as well as support me vocally--a skill he essentially gave to me; because he was certainly destined for much higher tasks.
Tasks like this new EP he is putting out today, The Stone.
His great friend and old college mate, Dan Haseltine of Jars of Clay shows up on it; no doubt equally wowed and supportive of the person and his talent. Jonathan's wife, Amanda, shows up as well. (Amanda and her beautiful soul are another entry for another time--but there is a reason they found each other.)
From the starting song, The Stone, you are drawn into an interesting and dynamically peaceful place. Jonathan first wrote and played that song while in my employ. The highlight of my shows for me was the moment he would step out on that song and I would have a chance to back him up. Even listening to it now brings a wave of chills and tears. I never say this lightly; but if there is a positive force we call “anointing”--meaning it is beyond our understanding and slips unnoticed beyond our grids and protections to take root in our hearts --Jonathan has it.
This is beautiful, current worship music. It breathes not only from his enormous talent, but from his role as a church worship leader for the past decade.
Talent runs in the family. I think I hear his gifted children on “I’m Putting On The Love of the Lord”. It too, brings chills.
Personally, much of the worship music out there doesn’t touch me. It is just my proclivities and tastes; and knowledge of who and what is behind them. It is truly hard for me to “worship” to worship music as a result. I don’t mean the “hand-raising/swaying” kind of “closed-eye” worship, I mean the kind of worship that brings you to a place of wonder--about God and his relationship to you and the world; worship where you are going about your hard day and feel a sense of peace and purpose, without feeling like you are being pandered to; worship that ushers in a sense of belonging.
Jonathan Noël’s music brings me consistently to that place of true worship.
This is a body of work that will bring you peace. This is a man you can love with confidence. He is all that and perhaps the sweetest aspect of this talent is that he never takes identity in it; he is humble and gifted and strong. That is rare. Jonathan is rare.”
– Margaret Becker, artist, producer, songwriter, and author of Coming Up For Air and With New Eyes
“Jonathan Noël is lavishly gifted, a gift that findsexpression in his effortless voice and beautiful, heartfelt songs. There is a sense of dignity and thoughtfulness to what he does that make his music worth paying careful attention to.”
– Fernando Ortega, artist, songwriter, worship leader
“I have come to know Jonathan as an artist passionately involved in the dialogue of what the Gospel can provoke us to, and how that fits into the form of music. His thirst for faith is evident through songs that combine pop sensibility with hymn-like depth.”
– Dan Haseltine, artist, producer, songwriter (Jars Of Clay)