Some of Camille Nelson’s fondest memories of growing up in Salt Lake City are the intimate moments she shared with her mother, an opera singer, who would sing her to sleep with beautiful lullabies. Now, in the midst of an extraordinary adult lifetime that has included visits to 70 countries and establishing herself as a critically acclaimed, award winning recording artist, the gifted singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist taps into those precious recollections to share feelings of comfort and calm with the world on her latest album Sacred Lullabies.
Co-produced by Camille and Trevor Price, owner of The Lounge at Stone Angel Music in Salt Lake, Sacred Lullabies is a thoughtful and insightful, collection of 10 gentle, spiritual and peace inducing instrumentals and six vocal tracks featuring Camille on acoustic guitar, violin, piano and vocals and a wonderful array of guest musicians. These include vocalists Kimberly Knighton, Britney Holman, Madilyn Page, Stephanie Madsen, Alex Sharpe (formerly of The Celtic Woman) and Catherine Bowman, tinwhistle and Uillean Pipe master Joey Schumann and violinist Matthew John Nelson.
True to the title and concept of the album, many of the song selections are timeless Christian or LDS hymns and lullabies that have made children feel secure in the arms of a loving God for years. Complementing pieces like “We’ll Bring the World His Truth,” “For the Beauty of the Earth” and “Where Can I Turn To For Peace?”, Camille exquisite re-imagines classical composer Dvorak’s “New World,” “Edelweiss” (from “The Sound of Music”) and Andrew Lloyd Webber’s “Pie Jesu” (from “Requiem”) while bringing a colorful Celtic twist to “Into The West,” Annie Lennox’s Oscar winning song from “Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King.”
Camille also brings two original compositions to Sacred Lullabies that blend seamlessly with the other material, including the hypnotic, lilting “Dreaming” and “Paris Lullaby,” a soulful, meditative piece that she wrote in the wake of the November 2015 terrorist attacks in Paris.
“With Sacred Lullabies, I wanted to create an album where people could feel peace and calm,” she says. “Lullabies are usually the songs we hear before going to bed and I remember the feeling of comfort and sense of calm that came when my mother would sing to me before bed. I wanted songs that people could turn to as a way to recreate that sense of calm and peace. My focus is on children’s songs since they are most typically related to lullabies. They can certainly be enjoyed by secular audiences, but I remember so well the sacredness of hearing them as a child and how they made me feel safe and close to the Lord.
“The song ‘Paris Attacks’ fits in well,” she adds, “because I wrote it to help people come together in the wake of a tragedy so that they could feel the power of love and the safety that comes when we all work together and support each other through the most difficult trials in life.”
Sacred Lullaby, Camille’s third album, is very different in tone and theme than the two recordings that have established her as a popular artist in several different genres. She followed her country-pop vocal debut album First Words with Lead Me Home, a mostly instrumental set of religious hymns that debuted at #8 on Billboard’s Classical Crossover chart and #11 on their Classical chart. The collection, which featured a string ensemble and special guests including Alex Sharpe, also hit #1 on both Amazon and iTunes’ new age charts and won Best Christian Album at the 2018 IMEA Awards.
“We live in a world where there is so much turmoil and so many disappointments that we tend to become numb and forget how to feel things deeply,” Camille says. “My whole goal in writing, recording and performing music is to get people to feel, bringing them closer to God through thoughts, prayers and meditation while helping them discover their purpose on earth. If they listen Sacred Lullabies not knowing it’s a Christian recording, I hope that they can still feel the emotion and sensitivity that Trevor, these incredible musicians and I brought to the experience. I came to the studio every day with a prayer in my heart and a smile on my face, knowing that something beautiful and uplifting would emerge because everything we did came from a place of love and grace.”