MICHAEL DEACON started singing at the age of two, but he was a late bloomer instrumentally. At 21 he picked up his first guitar and didn’t touch a piano until he was 25.
He learned to play by ear, and only started writing songs because, with no lessons, he didn’t know how to play songs that other people had written. But, with the help of Dick Flint of K-Tel Records, along with Herb Pilhofer and Billy Barber, Michael produced his first two singles and his first LP in Minneapolis at Sound 80 Studios during the summer of l975. He has since recorded four additional albums, six CDs, and has one screen credit for a major motion picture starring Bruce Dern entitled “On the Edge.”
In addition, he’s written and produced dozens of songs and sound tracks for radio and television commercials, industrial films, and corporate videos.
Even though Michael Deacon was a late bloomer, he was a quick study. He was blessed with a rich background to draw from at a relatively young age. By the time he was 25 years old, he had faced death, survived, graduated from college, spent a 4-year stint in the Air Force, had been
married for 5 years – – – 2 children – – – 2 years at a real job in the real world with Dick Holland, and a real divorce that sent him to his knees and then some. As a bachelor father for 2 years, he spent more time on his knees (and in his melodies), than would have otherwise been the case. Again, this was Michael at 25. . annulment granted.
Shortly after, he had a religious experience that introduced him to the One (and only) Triune God. That led him on a journey through mainline Protestant seminars and the significant Eastern religions. Finally, he had to make a choice- – – he had his two girls baptized in the Roman Catholic Church. Today, he hesitantly calls himself, when seriously asked, a born-again Catholic. Why the hesitation? He believes Pope Paul VI was accurate when declaring in l969 that “ . . . the smoke of Satan has insinuated itself into the highest levels of the Church.” As a militant Christian, he fights the attacks on his own body, and those upon the Mystical Body of Christ, with daily masses, rosaries, and willful, continuous prayers born of the great gift of Peace, which God has afforded him through his profound “experience” and the grace received through the Sacraments of the Church. “I would be nothing without the sacraments,” he told me as an aside . “ I would be crippled or dead. Or both.”
Listen to his title song “River Queen” to catch a glimpse of that portion of the Church which ignites his enthusiasm for the metaphor – – – the Church as Ark – – – River Queen – – – floating down the River of Life from which all good things come – – – like his wife (in his song, “My Lady off the Water.”) Michael continued:
“The River Queen” – – – the Church – – – it is Christ Jesus’ Ark of Salvation. It is a Christian Church, true. But it is that and more – – – It is Roman Catholic – – – the church in which all “live” members submit themselves to the authority of the Pope – – – revere our Blessed Lady, the Most Holy Mother of God – – – avail themselves of the complete absolution of sins in the confessional – – – take up their cross daily, and die to themselves for the Mystical Body of Christ (Col. 1:23-24) .
Far less important are a few facts that round out his personality. He’s bipolar – – – manic depressive.
But he counts that as a “gift,” stretching him to beyond the limits of what would have been called his “normal self.” Listen to songs like “Yahoo!” and “Gethsemane,” and you’ll get the drift.
Baseball and golf are his favorite sports, but not as a spectator. His lowest 18 hole round at Benson Park? 74. As for baseball, he played in the College World Series All-Star Game, was scouted by major league teams, and went to spring camps for Baltimore and Detroit. In his second semester , senior year, he carried 21 hours (7 classes) and still made the Dean’s list with a 4.0. The Dean sponsored him to take the pre-Mensa test that year. He passed but didn’t join.
A 27 year career in advertising had him creating ads and commercials for clients in cities and states across the nation and around the world.
What about his songs? International, award winning, good in every sense of the word: in lyrics, in melodies, in spirit, in arrangements, and in vocals. Michael is not a superstar flaunting large Truths. He simply dwells, at times, in his heavenly family and is very quiet and circumspect about the Help he gets from his Senior Partners. How does he speak of himself? About being merely a midwife?
READ A PAGE FROM ONE OF HIS JOURNALS:
AN INSIGHT INTO HOW THESE SONGS CAME TO BE:
“ . . . and it happened then, too. In fact, every song I’ve ever written started with a chord from Him. I’d be at the piano or with my guitar and, just before stepping away or putting it down, wham – – – there it was – – – a chord I hadn’t played all day. It came like a separated tuning fork, half in my hands and the “other half” in my heart. Then I’d be like a midwife – – – listening, pulling, humming – – – coaxing this song into existence. It took a hard kind of “listening” to hear – – – but by then, time would cease to exist – – – and, then, in no time, there was, “back and forth, over, and over, attention riveted to the tuning fork, back and forth, over and over – – – almost like a Shaman conjuring up a healing elixir, or a Medicine Man chanting back and forth, over and over, drawing into time the day’s melody from the Great Spirit. (Hear “Eric James Mosney.”)
The over ane over? The back and forth – – – again and again? I discovered that it was I who was being tuned in preparation for the words to come. They hovered around the Melody incomplete, like some angelic moth – – – they’d careen into the light, and again, like a midwife, I would pull them into existence and give them voice. That’s the short version. And that’s the answer I usually give. But the real story is that at those times, and at many ordinary times in my life, through daily communion and more, with Him, He has made me far more than just a midwife…”