Joy of Christmas
Audio CD | Import
2008 two CD holiday release. The founders of The Salvation Army, William and Catherine Booth, sought to bring Christian salvation to the poor, destitute and hungry by meeting both their physical and spiritual needs. They organized their church along military lines and music, based on military bands, has always been an important aspect of their work. This double disc set features the SA Band performing 34 Christmas faves including. 'Hark! The Herald Angels Sing', 'We Three Kings', 'Away In A Manger' and many more. Music Digital.
Top Customer Reviews
As I buy a lot of American Christmas albums, I know that several of these classic tunes, though well known in Britain, are far less popular in America. Songs such as Ding dong merrily on high, Once in Royal David's city, I saw three ships, While shepherds watched their flocks, Twelve days of Christmas, I wonder as I wander and Past three o'clock rarely turn up on American Christmas albums, though you can find American versions of most of them, some more easily than others. I was disappointed that we are only treated to two choruses of While shepherds watched their flocks (taking just 48 seconds) but was otherwise pleased with these tracks. Other tracks such as Sweet chiming bells and Here we come a wassailing are also great to hear as they are rarely heard these days anywhere as far as I know.
There are, of course, plenty of world-famous tunes including Hark the herald angels sing, O come all ye faithful, We three kings, Away in a manger, It came upon a midnight clear, First Noel, Silent night, White Christmas, Sleigh ride, Winter wonderland, God rest ye merry gentlemen, Deck the halls, Greensleeves (or What child is this), Do you hear what I hear?, Go tell it on the mountain and Little drummer boy.
One track (A carol fantasy) draws on a number of Christmas carols including The holly and the ivy, but as there are no liner notes beyond the track listing, it's a question of figuring out which carols are included. I don't remember hearing three tunes (Joy of Bethlehem, The stable door, The new born babe) anywhere else so it`s good to have them here although my curiosity is aroused. Maybe I can find vocal versions somewhere. The album closes with Auld lang syne, the Robert Burns classic.
This is a fine collection of instrumental Christmas music that is everything I expected it to be except for the minor quibble about the length of While shepherds watched their flocks. With 33 other tracks on this budget collection, I'm not going to knock star off for that. Nevertheless, the Salvation Army band still sounds best live in those streets and parks, where they can be heard at full volume. If I were to play their music (or anybody else's) at full volume at home, I'd expect an eviction order to follow in due course. Still, at least having their music on CD, I can listen to them whenever I feel like it.