Catholic Mom Music Spotlight

Mark Hargrave

 

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Visit Mark's Website at www.markhargrave.com

CM: Can you please tell us a little bit about yourself and your family?

I was born and raised in the small Cajun town of New Iberia, Louisiana.  My involvement in sport activities as a young boy was limited because of a heart condition diagnosed at birth.  I believe God used this limitation for His own  plan and put a desire in me to get involved in musical activities such as joining the school band, chorus, and taking piano lessons.  This plan continued to unfold when at the age of 15 I began writing songs and also teaching myself to play the guitar.  Music became a joy in my life and a strong faith became my inspiration.  Two years later I attended my first Christian concert by a group called "The Dameans".  It was after that concert that I felt in his heart the Lord calling me to music ministry in the Catholic Church.  That very same year I started the first youth choir and children's choir at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church in New Iberia.  I went on to serve the community by organizing choirs at neighboring churches.  At the age of 17 my eyes fell on a beautiful young woman named Debbie.   We began dating and were engaged three years afterwards and married one year after that.  In June of 2002 we celebrated 25 years of marriage.  We reside in Slidell, Louisiana and have one lovely daughter named Laura.

CM: What do you feel makes your music unique? 

A close friend wrote this about me which I believe describes perfectly why my music is unique:

Like an artist before his easel, Mark paints pictures with his songs. These musical "paintings" reflect his intimate relationship with Jesus. His songs emerge from the dept of this relationship full of life and compassion.  Perhaps there is no greater glimpse into another person's soul than there is into a songwriter who performs his own work, and yet Mark's songs are for everyone. Because of his ability to craft words into lyrical melodies, there is a stirring beauty and a lifting of the soul to God. Our hopes are renewed. Our pain is somehow shared with His. Our wonder of God's mighty love is heightened.

CM:  What are some of your goals and hopes for your music?

Since I began writing Christian music I always had a desire in my heart to lead people to the Lord through my music.  When I was in the recording process of my latest CD "Footprints in the Sand", I heard the Lord speak to my heart telling me that He would heal many people through my music.  This is also my goal and hopes for this CD.

CM: Please describe your own faith journey with the Catholic Church, and how this has impacted upon your music ministry.

I am known as a "cradle Catholic".   I believe totally in the teachings of the Catholic Church and believe that this is the Church that Jesus intended everyone to be a part of.  I had a strong desire to follow the Lord at a very young age.  This continued relationship has had an impact on the writings of my music.  I always pray to the Lord when I write something saying "If this is from you Lord, open the door, if not close it".

CM:  Fill us in on your musical background...what type of training have you
had? 

I played trumpet in High School band from 8th grade - 11th grade, played lead trumpet in High School band 10th and 11th grade, took piano in 10th grade and took chorus in 10th and 11th grade.   I began writing Christian music at age 15.  I am a self taught guitarist.

CM:  What's your favorite type of music?

I mostly listen to Christian music especially Praise & Worship music.   I also enjoy praying with classical music playing in the background especially various versions of Pacabell's Cannon.

CM:  Who are some of your favorite recording artists, both Catholic and
non-Catholic?

Some of my earliest musical influences include John Michael Talbot, St. Louis Jesuits, Amy Grant, and the Maranatha Singers.   I also grew up listening to artist like John Denver, The Carpenters, "Peter, Paul, and Mary", and "David Gates and Bread".   Now I mostly enjoy other Catholic artists, Don Moen and various Praise & Worship CDs like Hillsong's and Michael W. Smith's Worship CDs.

CM:  How do you choose the music you will record? 

When I write a new song I usually sing it to my wife, daughter and friends and see how they react to them and get their honest opinion which is sometimes very hard.   I will then pray to the Lord and the Blessed Mother for guidance.   If the song is about a particular saint, like my song "Song of Francis", I will pray to them too.   

CM:  If you write original lyrics, what is the inspiration behind your words?

All the songs on my new album "Footprints in the Sand" are original which tell a story of my life as a person struggling in this world to be a Christian and also the many people, situations, and scripture passages that have impacted this journey.

CM:  What can Catholic parents do to support Catholic recording artists? 

Buy Catholic Christian music for their homes, cars and work.  Support their local artists by spreading the news about their music and CDs.  They can also use their CDs for Christmas presents, birthday presents, etc.  Ask for their CDís at local Christian Bookstores.  Pray for their ministry!

CM:  How can we help our children make good listening choices?

Teach their children at a very young age to appreciate Christian music by playing it often in their homes and in the car.   I have always told my daughter, "Junk in, junk out".

CM:  What future projects are you working on?

Iím currently reading the "Divine Mercy in my Soul Diary" of Saint Faustina and writing songs based on this.  Iím getting ready to record some jingles that I wrote for a local Christian radio station WGON FM103.7.  I would like to record a new CD in the future if the Lord provides the funds.

CM:  How can our readers order your music? 

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My wet site at www.markhargrave.com

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Catholic Music Network

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www.cdbaby.com

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Local Catholic Bookstores (ask to order it if they donít have it)


CM:  Are there any additional comments or thoughts you'd like to share with
our CatholicMom.com readers?

Please checkout my new CD "Footprints in the Sand" which the title song is based on the popular "Footprints Poem".   This CD has been a lifelong dream of mine.  Please spread the word about it and ask for it at your local Christian Bookstores.  Any donations for my ministry would be appreciated.

From a Catholic perspective:  Donít waver in your Catholic faith.  Stand firm and defend it.  Pray for our Church especially our Priests.  Pray the Rosary daily!

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 Mark Hargrave's Discography

 

Catholic Music Network

Footprints in the Sand
Click on album cover
for more details