I'd say a successful band is one that sticks together for 10 years or so and has one of those TLA or first-name awards or a top-40 hit or is actually played on the radio. I'm not into the music scene, but I noticed a discrepancy when checking out Pandora for Christmas tunes and finding an LDS station, but no specifically Catholic tunes.

Has there ever been a successful Catholic group or artist singing music you'd hear on your local Christian rock station? Not just an artist in any genre who happens to be Catholic or an artist who was successful, converted to Catholicism and started appealing to a niche crowd (i.e. John Michael Talbot), but an artist or group like the Newsboys or Toby Mac.

I think this is an objectively answerable question, there's a wiki page for Roman Catholic Musicians but it is lacking both John Michael Talbot and The Singing Nun.

I edited the question to say, since the Singing Nun since Sister Smile would be an example of a "success" in the music business at least, but I've already got her record and I don't need another.

  • Looks objectively answerable to me. Commented Dec 26, 2017 at 23:05
  • 1
    I think the "Not just an artist who happens to be Catholic ..." part makes it subjective. Also you should pin it down to a country/countries you're interested in. There are probably many more successful Catholic musicians in the Philippines or Latin America than in the US for example...
    – curiousdannii
    Commented Dec 27, 2017 at 0:20
  • When you say top-40 are you allowing for Christian charts (like Matt Maher in Korvin's answer below) or only those that make the general charts?
    – curiousdannii
    Commented Dec 27, 2017 at 2:03
  • @curious either one. Just a band or artist who has broad appeal and is or was nationally recognized (not the Priestie Boyz). I don't care much what language the songs are in, ideally there'd be some Latin! Main thing is the genre has to be something like what you'd hear on a modern Christian radio station (pop/rock mix), except the message or at least the messengers are Catholic.
    – Peter Turner
    Commented Dec 27, 2017 at 4:03
  • @PeterTurner Then that makes it too broad.
    – curiousdannii
    Commented Dec 27, 2017 at 6:07

1 Answer 1


Matt Maher

From what I understand, his first record was released in 2007 but he'd been touring before that.

He uses rock and pop musical styles in a goodly portion of his catalog. His focus is contemporary Christian music, but I'll say this about his live performances: his early work in jazz piano really comes out, and his band can rock it. Their cover of Joe Cocker's feelin' alright had the whole place on its feet.

I've heard his song Hold us Together on a pop radio station, but it's been a few years.

  • Huh. I had no idea he was a Catholic. Gives some of his lines like those containing "church" a different implication... I wonder if he minds that his songs are sung and interpreted in line with Protestant theology.
    – curiousdannii
    Commented Dec 27, 2017 at 2:00
  • Cool, poking around a bit more led me to a defunct "Rocking Romans" facebook page which led me to another semi-defunct band page for "out of darkness" outofdarknessmusic.com/music gonna do some more poking.. Looks like there's a Canadian band called "Critical Mass" who might be cool (assuming of course they sound like BTO or Rush)
    – Peter Turner
    Commented Dec 27, 2017 at 4:25
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    @curiousdannii As I understand it, as long as it's all about Jesus I don't think he'd mind that interpretation at all. If it reaches across ecumenical lines (I think he's good friends with Chris Tomlin) I suspect he'd consider it a blessing. There's a lot of cross talk in the Christian music scene. (My son in law is involved in it). Commented Dec 27, 2017 at 17:18

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