The Life and Transcendence of Mindy Gledhill

— Written in four very compelling, bite-sized chapters —

1. Oh, romantic youth!

A magical time during which our young heroine hears music from the most unexpected sources.

It would be very convenient if Mindy Gledhill had come forth from the womb wailing in perfect pitch, or if she had taught herself piano at age two. Convenient, but untrue. Everybody loves the myth of the genius artist. But to perpetuate it here would deny Mindy of the work, effort, and sacrifice it took to become an artist.

Mindy spent most of her gangly youth in Eureka, California, where she was shaped by a range of music, from hymns and Sunday school songs, to her older sisters practicing Rachmoninov on the family piano—then blasting Wham! from boom boxes. And while most third-grade kids can barely carry a tune, our young heroine found herself harmonizing with everything from the microwave to the honking horn of the family van.

2. Exodus and adversity.

The throes of adolescence, the thrill of Neruda, and the thirst for the perfect smoothie.

If there is anything particularly exotic about Mindy (besides her beauty), it would be her family’s exodus to Madrid when she was 13. While in Spain, Mindy picked up a second language, discovered new types of music, and engaged in romantic activities like reading Neruda and wandering around the Prado. Certainly, Spain taught her many things, but most of all it taught that singing is as much about passion as it is about style.

At sixteen, her family migrated to Utah and the land of Mormons. There she endured the awkwardness of high school, wrote her first songs, and was snubbed by both the high school chamber choir and the high school play. This, of course, only made our heroine more determined, and she immediately took a job making smoothies so she could pay for voice lessons.

Clearly, Ginseng-mango-yogurt smoothies really do help your voice.

3. The sum of all effort.

How our heroine rebuffed suitors, married a furniture designer, then created an album, label, and a family (though not in that order).

In college, Mindy became a media music major. As a student, she focused on both music and repelling the advances of strange men. But when our heroine found someone to share a life with, she wisely married, and with her husband created an amazing artistic achievement: two very blonde boys.

At the same time, Mindy labored to create her first album. The Sum of All Grace proved to be an inspirational, faith-based endeavor—an artistic response to the challenges of being a wife, mother, student, and a spiritual being. It also reflected her “less is more” aesthetic, presenting arrangements that focus more on vocals and lyrics than on ornamentation. Her effort resulted in two Pearl Awards (Best Inspirational Album, New Recording Artist) in 2005, followed by another Pearl Award (Best Inspirational Song) in 2006 for her contribution on a compilation album. Consequently, some assumed that Mindy only wanted to be a Christian artist. But our heroine felt there was more to music—and to personal experience—than could be contained by a single musical category. So she left her label to explore new avenues as an independent artist.

4. Encore!

Mindy experiences the thrill of creativity, the joy of independence, and the excitement of collaborating with award-winning producers.

Declaring independence proved to be a good move. Excited by new risks and expanded freedom, Mindy discovered a greater sense of confidence and possibility. Her sophomore effort, Feather in the Wind, reflects that. Although the album explores a greater range of musical and vocal styles than her previous work, Mindy’s songs still remain poetic and nostalgic—and deeply meaningful. Clearly, it’s an album in which Mindy's true voice began to emerge, growing more distinctive and moving with every effort into the hands of industry pros in New York, Nashville, and finally, on her second independent album, into the hands of highly acclaimed, L.A.-based producer, Stuart Brawley.

Juno-nominated producer/engineer for artists like Michael Jackson, Celine Dion and Lenka, Stuart Brawley was a dream come true for Mindy when after hearing her music, he said “yes” to producing her album. With Stuart on board, songs in hand, and cat-eye glasses in place, Mindy ventured to North Hollywood to dive into the recording process. In the studio she was joined by talented artists like Jamie Wollam, the current drummer on tour with Tears for Fears and Joe Corcoran, who has engineered for The Dave Matthews Band and Lenka.

Of the recording, Stuart later said, “With Mindy, it was spontaneous, instinctual. It was apparent that we were all on the same page from the moment we started and within a day we knew we were at the beginning of making an awesome record.” The result? Anchor: a bubbly CD with undeniably catchy tunes. Laced with color, charm, and vintage flair, Anchor reminds that life is sweet and full of wonder.

While it seems that life couldn’t get any sweeter for our heroine, in the middle of making plans with Stuart, Grammy-winning producer, Finn Bjarnson, invited Mindy to sing three tracks on Kaskade's "Dynasty" album which hit #1 on the iTunes dance charts and #5 on all of iTunes the week it released.

These days, Mindy can be found just about anywhere on the map, gracing audiences with songs of romantic whimsy. When she’s not performing or recording, she can be found perusing thrift stores for vintage dresses or scanning the classifieds for a potential new addition to her instrument collection, of which her favorites are her 1857 pump organ and her 1980s Yamaha keytar.