I love this girl’s voice! When thinking about what to write this week, I could think of nothing better than to feature her music. I had the pleasure of getting to know Monique during my two years as a missionary in her parish in Mount Maunganui, New Zealand. She has a gorgeous heart and it radiates through her music. Her song, Temporary Warfare, is one of my favorites! You should check it out! Her music is not available for purchase, YET, but I can’t wait for the day it is! For now, I’ve asked her to share a bit about the inspiration behind her music. You can also follow her on Facebook on her page, Monique Holden Music. I encourage you to like and share this, if you feel so inclined! Hopefully, this is only the beginning of her story….
My name is Monique Holden, I am an eighteen year old musician living in Tauranga, New Zealand, where I am currently studying music performance and production at my local Polytechnic. I have grown up in the faith and teachings of the Catholic Church all my life and to this day I am deeply in love with the Eucharist and treasures of Catholicism. Growing up as the only girl among four brothers life could, and still can be very interesting at times as you can imagine. However, I cherish poetry, flowers and love all things that sparkle so you could say I definitely never lost my sense of femininity, much to my mother’s delight!
I discovered my passion for singing and music around the age of eleven, where I would practice for hours on end to CD’s of musicians such as Taylor Swift, Hilary Duff and Brooke Fraser. After recording myself on tape cassettes, I would listen back to them critiquing myself and, as a perfectionist, I would try to perfect every out of tune note. After a year of singing with backing tracks and silence, I decided it was time to challenge myself further and find an accompaniment for my vocals. I dedicated my time to teaching myself the guitar and since then have discovered my love for the strikingly full sound of the 12 string and most recently the Mandolin, however my wishful list of instrument possibilities could go on forever. Within four months of playing the guitar I was offered the opportunity to be praise and worship leader at our Parish prayer group. This involvement in the Church lead me to becoming a part of the youth band and leading worship at youth groups, festivals and Masses. This time was a period of real growth and challenges for me. Through this I began to discover that music ministry is a true gift from God and it was in that discovery that I found my desire to use it wisely and for the glory of God.
My musical journey has also included a range of incredible opportunities such as, professional gigs at festivals and shows, the thrilling experience of busking and performing in cafes and giving lessons to passionate children on music and guitar. Aside from singing and playing instruments the one thing I find myself most passionate about is song writing and how the use of words can create lyrics that are powerful and that have the ability to mesmerise, causing and allowing the imagination to run wild. One of the many reasons why I love song writing is because of the way it enables me to express emotions and experiences in such a creative and enthralling way. Like most songwriters my songs are inspired and constructed from personal experiences and to some extent slightly exaggerated. I aim to write in a way where the messages of my songs are disguised by the use of metaphors and other elements of figurative writing. I write in hope that people will be able to relate in their own way to my lyrics.
I acknowledge my music as a total gift from God, and I am excited to discover where and how He will use it to work according to His plan. We are told countless times throughout the Bible to praise the Lord with song, to sing and make music to Him. There is nothing more rewarding to me than making music for His glory. I hope to encourage aspiring musicians through my gift just as I have been inspired by those who use theirs to their fullness. Please keep me in your prayers as I further my study and development as a musician.
“Speak to one another with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs. Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord.”