Daniel Lyman Carter was born on 11 December 1955 in Caldwell, Idaho. He is a composer, songwriter, publisher, producer, and writer. He graduated from Caldwell High School in 1974. He was a member of the class of 1975 at Rick’s College (now BYU Idaho) where he majored in Music Composition, and he was a member of the class of 1985 at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah. He began working at becoming a composer, publisher, and author in 1970.
With a passion for music, entertainment, and arts, Daniel writes music for theater, soloists, instrumentalists, orchestras, choirs, and films encompassing various genres. Much of his work reflects his membership in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. His compositions include “As Now We Take the Sacrament” (Hymns 1985, no. 169). He was 24-years-old when he received the hymn text written by Lee Perry, the son of the late L. Tom Perry of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, from his friend and mentor, Michael F. Moody. The hymn placed second in the Church music contest in 1982, but there seemed to be no opportunity to have it published. In “The Story of ‘As Now We Take the Sacrament’” which was written by Daniel, he commented:
From that time until the spring of 1984 I composed many other pieces and entered other contests. Some of the pieces I composed during that period also won awards, but the hymn on which Lee and I collaborated remained nearly forgotten (I thought).
In April of 1984 I was notified by Michael Moody that As Now We Take the Sacrament was being considered for inclusion in a new hymnbook to be published late summer of 1985. However, The General Music Committee of the Church commented that the tune needed to be more singable for congregations. My setting, it seemed, was more suitable for choirs. They asked if I would consider composing another setting and do so quickly since there was some urgency to finalize all the selections for the new publication.
His compositions also include “A Young Man Prepared” and “The Shepherd’s Carol” (Children’s Songbook pp. 166, 40, respectively). In 1993, he received a commission to compose “Refuge and Rest,” a multimedia oratorio to commemorate the July 1996 Sesquicentennial Celebration of Winter Quarters. Later that year “Refuge and Rest” was expanded to include the Mormon pioneers’ exodus from Winter Quarters to the Salt Lake Valley. It was performed numerous times in Utah in 1997 under the title “Seasons of Faith.” In 1996, he was commissioned to compose “Come unto Christ, the Holy One of Israel” for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints 1997 Sesquicentennial Celebration.
His composition “Come unto Him” was recorded by the world-renown Mormon Tabernacle Choir and was included on their CD titled “This is the Christ.” The CD went #1 on Billboard’s Top 100 Classical charts the week of 11 June 2011. Daniel also relates the story behind “Come unto Him.” The Mormon Tabernacle Choir has also performed and recorded other of his works to include “The Pledge of Allegiance,” and “Come unto Christ, the Holy One of Israel.” He has also contributed several dozen compositions to LDS Church magazines since the late 1970s, and “Shine for Me Again, Star of Bethlehem,” a Christmas song collaboration in 1981 with lyricist Sherri Otteson Bird, remains a best seller throughout the LDS Church.
From 1986 to 2004, Daniel worked as a member of the Church’s General Music Committee and traveled to regional LDS Church music workshops where he spoke and taught in many subject areas, and also contributed an article on Church music policy to the Ensign magazine.
Daniel was part of a choral group known as the “Dan Carter Singers” which performed for approximately 10 years in churches and communities in Utah and other regional locations. The focus of the group was to perform new and inspiring LDS music. In 1996 the group recorded its only CD titled “Come unto Him – Music by Dan Carter.”
Daniel has approximately 500 pieces of music in print and continues to compose and publish. More recently his musical works focus on music for theatrical productions. He is also the author of a book called “Another Christmas Carol,” and writes at hubpages.com under his name, “danielcarter” on a variety of subjects including mental illness, emotional well-being, music, recipes and more.
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