John Michael is the founder and General Minister of the Brothers and Sisters of Charity at Little Portion Hermitage near Eureka Springs, Arkansas. This unique religious community encompasses celibates, singles, and families, and is the only community of its type in the United States to be granted canonical status in the Catholic Church. In addition to its monastic community in Arkansas, the Brothers and Sisters of Charity has around 500 domestic members worldwide.
In addition to releasing 45 albums, no other artist in Christian music has spanned so many different styles and genres so successfully.
Beginning in the late 1960s with Mason Proffit pioneering the Country Rock that became the mainstay of modern Country Music, John Michael went on to be part of the more radical founding generation of the newly forming Christian Contemporary Music in 1976.
His blending of contemporary style, and one of the first recordings of pure charismatic praise and worship made the Lord's Supper a milestone in Christian music. Next came his pioneering work in meditational music with Come to the Quiet , and then to contemporary folk/classical with The Painter. From there JMT ventured into classical ballet style with For The Bride, and into mainstream choral/orchestral style with the classic Light Eternal, for which he won a Dove Award. The Catholic Liturgy has been included with several of his Masses, as have many responsorial psalms throughout his work. Returning to the musical roots of the church, he even recorded the daily chants of the integrated monastic community he founded with Chant From the Hermitage . He has also explored ambient and world music with two soothing instrumental series, especially the Pathways series. In Cave of the Heart, he combined his earlier folk style with rhythmic movement that invokes a laid-back gospel feel.
Throughout his career he has returned to these genres again and again, expanding the quality and artistic breadth and scope with each recording. Although John Michael is most recognized for his more quiet sounds for musical meditation and contemplation, such a broad body of work from a single artist is unique in Christian music today.
In addition to John's music, writing, and teaching ministries, he and the Brothers and Sisters of Charity operate an agricultural mission in Nicaragua, provide major assistance to Mercy Corps, maintain a free medical clinic and engage in itinerant ministry locally, and operate The Little Portion Retreat and Training Center. He is also the founder and President of CAM, the Catholic Association of Musicians, an organization dedicated to the support and nurturing of Catholic musicians.
John Michael's numerous awards include nine Dove award nominations, a Dove Award for the album "Light Eternal," and the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (NARAS) President's Merit Award for "Song of the Poor." He has played before numerous secular and church officials including the Pope and Mother Teresa.
John Michael Talbot makes numerous appearances throughout the year performing around 50 concerts all over the country. He also gives an elected number of retreats at The Little Portion Retreat and Training Center in Eureka Springs Arkansas each year.