HOW IT ALL BEGAN
Coleen McMahon is a Beaverton, Oregon native; singer/songwriter recording artist with a very unique sound and style. A child prodigy of sorts, she started playing the piano by the age of 5, and was composing songs by the time she was 12.
Coleen listened to her father sing at church on Sundays, belted out Mariah Carey ballads in her room, and played the notes of Beethoven’s “Moonlight Sonata” on the piano; all of which inspired her deep love of music and desire to share her gift with others in her own unique way. Coleen feels that her upbringing inspired creative growth.
“Beaverton is a very low-key, slow paced city with a lot of ‘mom and pop’ restaurants and shops. We see all four seasons very distinctly. The beauty and laid back atmosphere really helped me tap into my creativity and inspiration. And with my family being there, all of the constant love and support really helped me to develop into the artist that I have become today.”
“To this day, something happens inside of me when I am on stage or sitting on a piano writing and singing,” Coleen explains. “The only way to describe it, is being completely high out of my mind on nothing but the purest form of purpose; like this is where I am supposed to live and die, right here. Part of the high is knowing that you are connecting to people listening to you at that moment. Energy travels through vibrations, and it creates feelings, it inspires and it provokes heart in people.”
The past few years have been fulfilling, challenging, and demanding, both personally and artistically. Some of her recent work was inspired by the death of one of her best friends, Tom Bridegroom, whose story was featured in the award-winning documentary, “Bridegroom.” Her song “Beautiful Boy” was the theme song in “Bridegroom” as well as the viral YouTube video “It Could Happen to You” (which has over 5 million views). This song also went on to sell thousands of copies on iTunes. It has been sung by multiple contestants on “The Voice” and “America’s Got Talent,” and was used as the theme song for a popular youtube video based on “Prayers For Bobby,” which stars Sigourney Weaver.
Additionally, she co-wrote and sang the theme song, called “Note to Self” for the trailer for the new BET drama “Being Mary Jane,” starring Gabrielle Union, as well as a commercial for BET. Coleen’s voice and music has been featured on the NBC show “The Brave”, the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN), “Warner Chappell”, MTV, MSNBC, CNN, “The Rikki Lake Show,” “The Maury Show,” the feature film “Ostwind 2,” the film “Walking While Black,” the film “The Call,” a tribute video for “Tarzan,” and multiple songs on the popular youtube channel “Epic Music World.” She has written for and worked with Sony, Universal, Disney, and also with Alex Suarez from the band Cobra Starship, the production duo Aurah, J2 and Dan Brown Jr., to name a few.
Coleen plays piano, but has also dabbled with the saxophone, flute, and oboe. She writes for all genres, but especially loves inspirational, alternative, rock, pop, R&B, and country music, mainly focusing on simple lyrics and melodies that evoke a strong, visceral reaction.