One Lynnfield resident has been making her mark on the music world while continuing to build on years of helping to promote the arts in town.
Christmas Album Released Last Year
Last year, the singer Noel released her second album, "A New England Christmas," which includes a number of Christmas classics as well as the song "Wish You Were Here."
In 2006, she released her first album, entitled "Defenseless." Noel added that the Christmas album appeared on the Grammy ballot in three categories, but was not nominated. Still, she plans to attend the Grammies later this winter.
Noel is a soprano whose voice reflects strong classical influences. She also plays the piano and is a self-described beginner on the guitar.
Typecast In Horror Movies?
Noel is the singer's real first name, she was born a few days before Christmas, and her second album has a holiday theme. With these things in mind, it's perhaps ironic that many people may have already heard her singing in several horror movies.
For example, the first movie her singing could be heard in was "The Fourth Floor," a 1999 thriller starring William Hurt and Juliette Lewis. Other film soundtrack credits include "Darkness Falls" and "Frailty." Looking ahead to next year, Noel said that she will provide vocals for a zombie film called "Contained."
"I'm typecast for scary movies," she says with a laugh. "I did a Christmas album so I could do happy music." Noel added that many film directors who have used her vocal tracks are looking for a "pure" soprano sort of sound, that they then proceed to "thicken things up" with.
Different Projects In The Works
If she is typecast, it won't be for long. Noel reported that she has also been working on some material with songwriter, producer and former Grateful Dead member Bob Bralove. According to Wikipedia, Bralove's keyboard-synthesizer work appears on the band's albums "Infrared Roses" (1989) and "Built to Last" (1991).
Noel says that one reason Bralove may have been interested in working with her was that, having grown up in a classical music-oriented household, she was not actually familiar with the Grateful Dead while growing up - nor with the Beatles for that matter.
Noel also indicated that a DJ named BT has suggested a trance dance music track that would incorporate her voice. "My life keeps taking its own direction," said Noel, adding that "I'm working with great people."
Teaches Local Voice Students As Well
Locally, Noel has been a Lynnfield resident for over a decade, having grown up in Wickford, Rhode Island. She teaches about 20 voice students at this point, many of them high school aged singers who hope to attend the Boston Conservatory and other top music institutions.
"These kids need to have a lot of solid training to get accepted," said Noel, pointing out that the current acceptance rate at the Boston Conservatory is around 9 percent.
Noel is also a former chair of the Lynnfield Cultural Council, which provides grants to local artistic endeavors, and she will also be playing in the Lynnfield Community Schools' January production of "Seussical."
As she continues to build experience as a voice teacher, Noel has also had the opportunity to feel great pride as former students go on to great accomplishments. She reported that one former Christine Dwyer was a stand-by lead for a national tour of Rent, while another recently earned a master's degree in opera.
"I love teaching," she said. "Every voice is so unique, so different, and it's just a passion."
Noel often sings at bookstores, coffee shops and other places throughout the North Shore and elsewhere in the region.