My very favorite thing about Christmas is the music.
Every year I buy at least one new Christmas CD. This season, I’m already up to two, with maybe one more ending up in my collection.
I picked up Sarah McLachlan’s Wintersong CD and it’s a beauty. Twelve songs make up the holiday collection, starting with John Lennon and Yoko Ono’s Happy Xmas (War Is Over), presented in McLachlan’s usual heartfelt style.
My other favorite cuts are River, a Joni Mitchell tune; Song For A Winter’s Night by Gordon Lightfoot; and Christmastime Is Here, featuring Diana Krall. No surprise they’re all Canadians, since McLachlan hails from Nova Scotia. The title tune, Wintersong, was written by McLachlan.
Other Starbucks Christmas CD’s include Jolly Old Soul; The Night Before Christmas (who knew Meryl Streep could sing?); A Charlie Brown Christmas with Vince Guaraldi; and Lifted: Songs of the Spirit.
The second CD I bought was Andreas Vollenweider’s Midnight Clear, featuring Carly Simon. I purchased it directly through his Website and it’s lovely, lovely music as only Vollenweider can make.
The CD starts out with the traditional The Holly and the Ivy and Vollenweider is joined by Carly Simon on four tunes including Midnight Clear, Suspended Note, Forgive and Hymn to the Secret Heart.
Max Laesser, Switzerland, 2004. Photo by Sue Frause.The musical duo has been friends for 25 years and this is Vollenweider’s first holiday compilation. Carly Simon has a Christmas CD titled Christmas Is Almost Here, released in 2003. The original recording has been remastered with extra tracks added.
As a disclaimer, I will add that I know Andreas Vollenweider from my days of living in Switzerland many moons ago. And one of my longtime friends, Swiss musician Max Laesser, is also featured on the CD.
Some of my other favorite Christmas CD’s are Perry Como Sings Merry Christmas Music; Christmas Songs with the Ray Brown Trio; George Winston’s December; Christmas With Dino; Handel’s Messiah-A Sacred Oratorio; Tony Bennett-The Christmas Album; Christmas Remixed (Holiday Classics Re-Grooved); Diana Krall Christmas Songs; Nat King Cole-The Christmas Song; Mannheim Steamroller-A Fresh Aire Christmas; Tchaikovsky-Nutcracker Suite; A Dave Brubeck Christmas; and Michael Buble Let It Snow.
Most are available amazon.com.
Photo credit: Sue Frause