2nd Day of Christmas: Being a Patr(e)on

For the second day of Christmas, I’m sharing a musical resource that has enriched 2017 for me. It combines inspiring music that is useful in my ministry with the opportunity to support a talented, independent, progressive musician–of which there are far too few. I speak of the Patreon site of my friend Richard Bruxvoort Colligan, who creates worship songs for the church.

Through Patreon, you sign up as a “patron,” which allows you to pledge a certain amount for each song Richard releases. Depending on the level of your support, you receive by download some combination of .mp3 recordings, lead sheets, piano scores, chord charts, original art, occasional videos and even online concerts. My pledge (through Women at the Well) is $7 per song, so we get everything we need to use this music in worship. With 2-3 songs issued per month, it’s an affordable way to receive usable, relevant, very singable music that enriches worship.

There’s a lot of information about Richard and his music at the link. What it doesn’t say there is that he and his wife Trish are amazing humans, musicians, leaders, advocates, and encouragers. We became friends seven years ago after I attended a retreat they led on planning worship for Advent and, soon after, a drum-making retreat near their home in Strawberry Point. From that beginning, I have become a fan of so much of their music, including  their Behold CD of Christmas music and Trish’s 2014 solo CD Wild Acre. In recent years, Richard has dived deep into the Psalms, which means his work is wonderfully grounded and amazingly relevant to a broad range of life experiences. Here’s a short video where he explains what he’s about, and a 23-second description of his music. 

I can’t tell you how many times I listen to Richard’s most recent release and find it perfectly fitting for a worship series I am planning, or I look back at past songs and find something that speaks beautifully to a theme that only just emerged. We “wait[ed] full of hope” through Advent, and we “ke[pt] our steps steady” all through the fall as we journeyed with Moses and the Israelites on the way from slavery to the promised land. The somewhat experimental and organic prayer song, “We Pray, We Love,” has become a recurring favorite in our prayer time in worship at the prison, with its deep truth that I have repeated so many times: We pray for what we love, and we love what we pray for. These few examples barely scratch the surface of why I love Richard’s music.

I hope you’ll take a look and consider becoming a patron. Even if you aren’t a worship planner, there is much here that will bless you–not the least that you will know you are supporting the singing of truth and justice in a world that is longing for those melodies. Just think:  Richard BC can be on your list of gifts that enrich 2018!


The rest of the days of Christmas:

1st Day of Christmas 2017: LeVar Burton Reads

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