Vanessa Joy is a singer/songwriter and a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Joy was born in Minnesota, went to school in Idaho at then-Ricks College, and graduated in music from Brigham Young University. She moved to Arizona about a year-and-a-half ago, when her husband got a job there. Vanessa's musical journey began when she attended a singer/songwriter's workshop in Phoenix,Arizona. One of the instructors at the seminar was Marvin Goldstein, a Florida-based musician who has been active on the LDS music scene for the past 50 years. Goldstein, a Jewish convert to Mormonism, performs all over the world. Vanessa has continued to work with Goldstein, at his invitation. They wanted to focus on spiritual music, so they chose some of the old traditional hymns that have such timeless, beautiful messages. Many of them were new to her, but she had an exciting time learning them. They produced a CD together, "Sweet By and By," as well as a DVD, titled "Expressions of Christ," where Joy's singing has been paired with Greg Olsen paintings of the Savior. Arrangements and piano accompaniment are done by Goldstein.
They have hit not only the LDS market but also the Christian market "in a big way," says Goldstein. They were invited to perform in an Evangelical Baptist Church in Cocoa, Fla., for one thing; even more exciting was an invitation to perform at Peace Concerts in Egypt and Israel. The concert in Egypt was sponsored by the deputy ambassador there (before the unrest of 2011), and was staged in a Coptic area. In Israel, they performed at the Sea of Galilee and in Tiberius. In both locations, they used local orchestras, composed of Arabs: Christians and Muslims, which was inspiring in itself. Goldstein has been doing such Peace Concerts for a number of years. They have also performed in San Antonio, Las Vegas, Idaho, and Utah.
Goldstein and Joy are currently working on a second album of inspirational music that may also include some love songs. Joy's main requirement is that her music always be uplifting.