“Take a leap of faith and begin this wondrous new year by believing. Believe in yourself. And believe that there is a loving Source – a Sower of Dreams – just waiting to be asked to help you make your dreams come true.”
Sarah Ban Breathnach
Every Friday night we smooth our way into the weekend with music, the universal language. These selections demonstrate that despite what is being passed off as art today, there is plenty of really good music available. Come along and enjoy.
For the past several weeks we’ve featured Christmas music. Christmas day has come and gone, but the Christmas season continues. So, one more round of holiday music as we head into the New Year’s weekend.
No mention of Christmas in this classic, but it certainly rings true even after December 25th fades away.
This next ensemble recorded a Christmas album in 1990 that has a Nashville-style sound. Some very talented musicians perform a Christmas favorite like you’ve never heard before.
Loved that mandolin solo. Next!
Again, one of the many Christmas songs that never mentions Christmas and arguably has nothing to do with Christmas.
I’ve seen the movie.
More than once.
She never sings about Christmas.
And that’s okay.
Tony Bennett with the Count Basie Orchestra.
Just a few.
And now, one of the great entertainers of our time.
Seth MacFarlane is the voice of Peter Griffin in “Family Guy.” Turns out MacFarlane can sing.
New Year’s Eve will require some obligatory bubbly. This MacFarlane rendition was first heard in a 1958 film.
MacFarlane may not be socially or politically my cup of tea, but he is talented.
Have everything in order for Saturday night?
Margaret Whiting was the first to record “What Are You Doing New Year’s Eve?”–in 1947. But The Orioles were the first to chart with the song.
The lyrics were composed by Frank Loesser who also wrote “Praise the Lord and Pass the Ammunition,” “Luck be a Lady”, “I Don’t Want To Walk Without You”, and “Baby It’s Cold Outside”.
Loesser had this advice for younger songwriters:
“Remember, a song is like a freight train moving across a stage. Every boxcar has a word on it. Those people have to hear everything and understand it – fast, because in a minute the car will be gone and they’ll never see it again. Make them listen and then lay it in their laps.”
Seems “What Are You Doing New Year’s Eve?” wasn’t intended to be a New Year’s song.
Loesser’s daughter Susan wrote this in her book A Most Remarkable Fella: Frank Loesser and the Guys and Dolls in His Life. ”
“It is early spring. The singer, madly in love, is making a (possibly rash) commitment far into the future. (‘Maybe it’s much too early in the game. Ah, but I thought I’d ask you just the same – What are you doing New Year’s, New Year’s Eve?’) It always annoyed my father when the song was sung during the holidays.”
For my money no one does it better than Karen Carpenter.
Voice of the angels.
We prepare and prepare for the holidays and they’ll soon be over. Then comes long, cold, hard, dreary January and February. Are you sad about that?
In 1996 jazz pianist Dave Brubeck (“Take Five” fame) released a Christmas album of solo piano pieces.
Dave Brubeck died in December of 2012, one day before his 92nd birthday.
That’s it for this week.
A Prayer at the End and Beginning of a Year
Lord, give me I pray:
A remembering heart for the things that have happened.
An attentive heart to what I have learned.
A forgiving heart for what has hurt.
A grateful heart for what has blessed.
A brave heart for what may be required.
An open heart to all that may come.
A trusting heart to go forth with You.
A loving heart for You and all your creation.
A longing heart for the reconciliation of all things.
A willing heart to say “Yes” to what You will
– Leighton Ford of Charlotte is a Presbyterian minister known internationally as preacher, writer and mentor
We close with Fourplay.