In this month of July that celebrates all that is good in our country, Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity feature Kristen Graves’ song ‘Lay it Down’. We highlight those individuals who like St. Francis of Assisi are committed and “called to heal the wounded, to bind up the broken, and to recall the erring”… witnessing the best of humanity.
Comments from Kristen Graves
“‘Lay it Down’, is a song about finding humanity in each other and taking on and sharing someone else’s burden. My husband runs a non-profit and we have been traveling to Mexico for the past ten years working with needy children and families. This spring I met a woman named Socorro, and her three children while working in the jungle of Southern Mexico. She came to one of our monthly food distributions even though she had lost her registration card – as a homeless family – they shuffle from place to place, and somewhere along the way she had lost it. Because we recognized her it didn’t pose a problem, but she had to wait until the end of the afternoon with the new registrations so that we could get all of her information again. When we got to the end of the afternoon, there were about 20 families left, and all of them knowing her story, moved to the side so that she and her children could pass through the line first. In that moment, I witnessed the best of humanity, and Socorro, being the best mother she can be to her children inspired me to write the song.”
Kristen Graves is a folk/pop singer & songwriter with a voice that commands attention, lyrics that catch your heart, and melodies that stay with the listener long after the evening ends. Her songs have a coziness to them like a well-worn winter blanket, but don’t underestimate her; she can pack a serious emotional punch at a moment’s notice. Picture an energetic Sarah McLachlan, or Tracy Chapman with a pop edge, and you’ve found Kristen Graves. Kristen has been writing and performing her own songs since 2000. As an acoustic singer & songwriter she has toured nationally since 2002. She has written and recorded four albums, and has independently sold thousands of copies of her CDs, most recently releasing her new 3-song EP entitled, ‘Lay it Down.’
Originally from the Midwest, Kristen began Classical piano lessons at age 6, studying and developing her talent until she began to write her own music at 18. Picking up the guitar during college, Kristen wrote, recorded and produced two albums, launching a solo career by the time she graduated in 2004. At the same time, beginning to volunteer and travel to an orphanage in Oaxaca, Mexico, she met fellow volunteer, Bryan Nurnberger. Soon after, Bryan founded Simply Smiles, a non-profit organization dedicated to providing bright futures for impoverished children. The couple has been working together combining arts and philanthropy ever since.
*featured songwriter, Connecticut Songwriters Association, 2011!!
*playing ‘live’ at Kavarna, Green Bay, WI, on July 23, 2011!
*playing ‘live’ at the Cup o’ Joy, Green Bay, WI on July 29, 2011!