Tis’ the Season for Christmas music.
One local radio station went to an ‘All Christmas Music’ format a full two weeks before Thanksgiving.
Sadly, Christmastime has become such a stressful season. A time full of a whirlwind of activities, demands and responsibilities.
So then, isn’t it wonderful that there’s so much music associated with Christmas?
I’m no expert on the ‘magic’ of music. I just know that it invigorates the body, it inspires and touches the heart.
Growing up, my mom was a big Dean Martin fan and I guess I’ve become a fan too. He had a great voice and style. My mom died when I was 19 years old, and I guess my affection for my mom is what draws me to his music. My favorite of his Christmas songs? Probably “Baby It’s Cold Outside.”
A group I really liked in High School was Jethro Tull and they did a pretty cool song simply titled, “A Christmas Song.” And then there’s Bruce Springsteen’s “Santa Claus is Coming to Town.” Also, David Bowie was a guest on a Bing Crosby Christmas special in the 1970’s, providing a duet titled “Peace on Earth/Little Drummer Boy” that seems to only grow in popularity.
One really amazing Christmas album was put out by an artist in Canada.
Bruce Cockburn has evidently been hugely popular in his home country for a couple of decades, but I don’t personally know too many people in the U.S. that know about him. Cockburn’s “Christmas” album has great songs, wonderfully arranged, and performed by excellent musicians. It’s unlike any other Christmas album. The song I like the best is “Les Anges Dans Nos Campagnes.” It’s basically “Angeles We Have Heard on High,” with the same chorus but different verses. And it’s sung in French.
There are other songs: “Blue Christmas” by Elvis Presley, and Jars of Clay’s version of “Little Drummer Boy.”
But at last there’s “A Charlie Brown Christmas.” Some childhood memories have not diminished and my fondness seems to only grow for the Christmas special and it’s music by the Vince Guaraldi Trio. The CD is one of my favorites and I watch the special every year. When it comes to the end, I get a lump in my throat and a tear in my eye.
I’m an old softie.
Hark the herald angels sing
Glory to the newborn king
Peace on earth and mercy mild
God and sinners reconciled
Joyfull all ye nations rise
Join the triumph of the skies
With angelic host proclaim
Christ is born in Bethlehem
Watching A Charlie Brown Christmas,
the story, the music, it still completely captures my heart.
“. . . That’s what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown!”