Get Wind Of This… (Sunday Song Series)

Thanks for breezing into my neck of the WWW woods. Your timely arrival coincides with Week #36 of our Sunday Song Series. On this occasion, our musical adventure involves the selection, Sunday Morning Breeze, performed by Mannheim Steamroller… Chip Davis’ ensemble renown (almost) exclusively for performing covers of centuries spanning, Yuletide carols. That “almost” parenthetical is due to the fact that these accomplished musicians have amply proven their vast repertoire is not a December only phenom. Or… to quote Mr. Davis, “see… Mannheim isn’t just for Christmas.”

At its considerable face value, our featured track is blue-chip, relaxation music. And who amongst us cannot benefit from a Sunday (or any other day) Take Five from the rat race… all of which works out wonderfully / literally seeing how this particular musical interlude does clock out at a mere 11 seconds beyond the 5 minutes.

I can recall one of my own laid-back listening experiences where daybreak, Sunday breezes (of the meteorological variety) provided additional audiovisual effects… e.g., outdoor rustling leaves… branches swaying with waking up, chirping birds and indoor swaying curtains. Factoring in the scent of freshly brewed coffee and well… need I say more?

Going beyond the face value… an instrumental masterpiece can have its advantages… for one… no storytelling songsmith who might inhabit / inhibit our thoughts. For some of us, imaginations will be free to roam… be our focus a fond memory or unfulfilled fantasy. If we’re sufficiently wowed, such selections might even get added to “the soundtracks of our lives.”

In my own case, this included an actual soundtrack… part of my playlist featured on a burned CD tribute to my late mother. Sunday Morning Breeze (and similar tracks) certainly enhanced the mood as I sat before a microphone to recreate the eulogy I had written for / delivered at her memorial service. I consider my tribute the finest recording studio work I’ve ever done and… even were I immortal… I’d never expect to top it.

Our Sunday Song Series will be return seven days from now. Hopefully, you’ll be back, too?

 

 

 

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BlogCast: Tom’s Top 20 Countdown “2” Christmas: Song 8

The Little Drummer Boy, a.k.a. Carol of the Drum was composed by Katherine Kennicott Davis back in 1941. In the three score and sixteen years since then, there’ve been literal scores of musical scores… so many superb performances that, deciding on one over another… i.e., which one to give top billing for today’s BlogCast… was nearly impossible… uh… nearly being the operative word here.

While it had been tempting to go with the very first rendition I had ever heard (as a four-year-old boy)… performed by the Harry Simeone Chorale… that was not reason enough.

Well, as it turns out, my overall deciding factor was not so much the quality of the performance… after all, they are all winners. In the end, it all boiled down to the power of the unifying message. Hence my choice of the Alex Boye’ ft Genesis Choir (video above).

As for the other nine recording artists who I also “auditioned”, I’ve typed up a list of links to videos which showcase their great performances. And, btw, I do thank all the YouTube posters and videographers who’ve been applying an extra special, festive shine to all of my holiday BlogCasts. Obviously, none of what I do would be possible without you.

 

The “Little” Little Drummer Boy Menu

1951: Trapp Family Singers (the very first recording)
1958: Harry Simeone Chorale (this is the record I first heard as a 4-year-old “little drummer” boy)
1965: Vince Guaraldi Trio (Charlie Brown Christmas album)
1977: Bing Crosby & David Bowie (Bing’s final TV holiday special)
1987: Bob Seger & the Silver Bullet Band (Special Olympics Christmas Charity album)
1988: Mannheim Steamroller (A Fresh Aire Christmas album)
1993: Glen Campbell (Home For The Holiday’s album)
2004: Vanessa Williams (Silver & Gold album)
2006: Celtic Woman with Orla Fallon & Chloe Agnew (Christmas TV special)

 

I now thank you for your listenership and invite you back for the remainder of my Top 20 Countdown “2” Christmas… where I’ll be presenting select holiday classics… one-a-day… from now until we reach #1 on the 25th.

You’re also cordially invited to click back here for my regular monthly BlogCast… one that typically features anywhere from 3 to 5 songs that, when segued, transform everything into an appealing theme… this program slated to hit the www “airwaves” on Sunday, December 24, 2017.

 

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to you all!

 

FYI, my past musical presentations are archived within my BlogCast and music categories.

If you’ve enjoyed this post, don’t forget to like, follow, share and comment.

 

BlogCast: Tom’s Top 20 Countdown “2” Christmas: Song 9

My Christmas Story and BlogCast’s Song 9 both share the same title…

 

Traditions of Christmas

 

On this day, I awoke at daybreak to my dream about Christmas 1989… that being the very first year where our new family reality had begun to establish and assert itself following my Father’s death a scant thirteen months earlier.

During that December, my Sister had given the gift of music to our widowed Mom… a cassette titled: Mannheim Steamroller Fresh Aire Christmas by Chip Davis… the very album where Traditions of Christmas is the second to the final track.

Mom’s reaction? Well… in spite of how her era’s holiday music featured instrumental arrangements that were quite different, she instantly fell in love with the entire Mannheim sound.

I have my sister to thank for introducing us to Chip Davis’ “Fresh Aire” freshness… for elevating everyone’s mood that special Christmas… for her immense assist in our emotional healing process… and especially… for establishing our new family musical tradition.

I know that were our Mom alive, she would’ve eagerly sat down at this very keyboard… on this very night… to enthusiastically blog her similar sentiments. With my sharing many of her same sensibilities and possessing 23 of her chromosomes, as well… well… perhaps… in a sense… Mom did express her feelings in the here and now… after all.

From Christmas 1989 onward… until 2002… that Mannheim Steamroller cassette was the very first holiday music Mom “rolled out”.

And for each of the 15 Christmases since Mom passed on… to now put this into DJ parlance… I’ve kept each of those twelve Mannheim Steamroller songs “in heavy rotation” on my Holiday Hit Parade / playlist… and in the process… kept our family Tradition of Christmas alive, as well.

Needless to say… I am committed to continuing that tradition for as long as there’s a clear thought in my head, a steady heartbeat in my chest and I’m able to maintain the necessary amount of manual dexterity.

On a more musical note… be sure to give a look-see and listen to the following two linked videos. The first clip features composer Chip Davis briefly discussing his lyrically enhanced Traditions of Christmas. The second clip features that very song, which YouTube videographer, Jenny Burke visually enhanced with real world imagery… snowy scenes that so remind me of my own neighborhood… and might even resemble yours, too. I thank her for her splendid work, which makes my blog so much more attractive.

I must also express my gratitude to YouTube videographer Phil Carroll for providing his photographic montage in the lead video above. His superb work also adds eye appeal to my blog… his imagery’s settings do resemble cherished photos found within my own family album.

Last but not least, I thank you for your listenership and invite you back for the remainder of my Top 20 Countdown “2” Christmas… where I’ll be presenting select holiday classics… one-a-day… from now until we reach #1 on the 25th.

I’d also like to invite you to click back for my regular monthly BlogCast… one that typically features anywhere from 3 to 5 songs that, when segued, transform everything into an appealing theme… this program slated to hit the www “airwaves” on Sunday, December 24, 2017.

 

I Wish Everyone the Merriest, Freshest, “Fresh Aire” Christmas and the Happiest of Holidays! May Your Own Traditions be as Heartfelt and Memorable as Mine!

 

FYI, my past musical presentations are archived within my BlogCast and music categories.

If you’ve enjoyed this post, don’t forget to like, follow, share and comment.

 

 

Wishing For A Merry Christmas

On this special day, I wish all who are celebrating the healthiest, happiest Christmas possible.

In many areas of our troubled world, such a wish can be a tall order considering all the serious work that has yet to be done towards that end beginning.

I now yield my blog podium over to the following recording artists and videographers who’ll add their commentary to mine.

 

Perry Como ~ Christmas Dream

John Lennon & Yoko Ono ~ Happy Xmas (War is Over)

(Be sure not to miss the Mahatma Gandhi quotation as the video ends)

Mannheim Steamroller ~ Stille Nacht