Saturday, December 25, 2021

MERRY MERRY MERRY CHRISTMAS - DECEMBER 25 - THE DAY WE CELEBRATE THE JOYS OF LIFE AND THE BIRTH OF JESUS CHRIST!

Merry Christmas
- To coordinate our families' times for Christmas, we celebrated and opened gifts yesterday. Watching my four and half year old grandson relish every second of opening everybody's gifts and enjoying his gifts brought smiles, laughter and love. I hope, whether yesterday, today or tomorrow that you enjoy the feelings this grandest day of celebration brings. Every time I hear the story of the birth of Jesus, I am reminded that it truly is The Reason for The Season.

On this special day please enjoy NO. 1 on THE 2021 CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN as multi-Grammy winning artist Faith Hill delivers a powerful song celebrating the birth of Christ - A BABY CHANGES EVERYTHING.


Also, today enjoy a completely new arrangement of a very old Christmas Classic - for KING & COUNTRY performs  OH COME OH COME EMMANUEL.

 

And no listing of Christmas songs would be complete without this - The Mormon Tabernacle Choir sings the greatest hymn in the history of religious music with over 2,000 people from around the world - THE HALLELUJAH CHORUS!


And - When today ends, and the kids are finally tired, let this nice little tune by the greatest rock/pop group in history with Ringo Starr send you off with dreams of Christmas.


I hope you enjoyed the tunes brought to you for the ninth year of THE CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN and HAPPY NEW YEAR!

D.L.Stafford


Friday, December 24, 2021

IT'S CHRISTMAS EVE! THE PRESENTS ARE WRAPPED AND UNDER THE TREE RIGHT!! NO. 2 ON THE 2021 CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN

CHRISTMAS EVE! All wrapping done - check! All presents under the tree - check! All cookies, brownies, cakes, pies, etc. cooked - check! Prime Rib, Ham, Turkey in the oven - check! Everything is slowly being put in place for little kids to walk on the ceiling! To celebrate the night before the big day, it is my fervent hope that you and yours are enjoying the grandest of all seasons as we prepare for the joy of family together and being with people that you may not have seen in a long time. And, that we prepare to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, the savior of the world. 

Today seems a perfect time to hear a cavalcade of British royalty and thespian talent presenting a unique reading of THE NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS - NO. 2 ON THE 2021 CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN.


Next - A great pop tune celebrating Christmas Eve by Ryan Stevenson as he and his crew celebrate Christmas Eve with a great tune - THIS CHRISTMAS EVE.


And to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ is a powerful song written by Chris Tomlin and sung by Lauren Daigle - NOEL!


Have a good one!

D.L.Stafford

Thursday, December 23, 2021

IT'S RANDOM THURSDAY FOR SOME NEW TUNES FOR NO. 3 ON THE 2021 CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN

Today is for those of you hunting for some new music to listen to for Christmas. I have searched high and low to find tunes that are pretty much brand new this season. Three very different artists to help you celebrate Christmas..

First today - ALABAMA doing an acapella number entitled CHRISTMAS IN DIXIE - NO. 3 ON THE 2021 CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN. Wow, this is some fine singing.


Second - One of the best guitarist and singers performing today in Country Music - KEITH URBAN performs a smooth arrangement with a very cool video - I'LL BE YOUR SANTA TONIGHT.


Then, enjoy a great jazz/pop artist who happens to be the daughter of Ravi Shankar, a master of the sitar, who collaborated with the likes of George Harrison, The Beatles and The Rolling Stones - NORAH JONES delivers a completely unique tune and video entitled CHRISTMAS CALLING (JOLLY JONES).

 

Tomorrow is Christmas Eve. I can't wait. Merry Christmas!

D.L.Stafford

Wednesday, December 22, 2021

IT'S HUMP DAY - LET'S LISTEN TO SOME GREAT JAZZ PRESENTED BY SOME AMAZING ARTISTS TODAY - NO. 4 ON THE 2021 CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN

I've always been a jazz fan - big band, small combo, quartet, great singer and, of course, piano. Jazz has a broad array of different styles and rhythms to see and hear. Today, I'm bringing you some new and some tried and true from the jazz world writing, playing and singing about Christmas. 

First up on Jazz Wednesday, take a listen and enjoy one of the masters of jazz piano - No. 4 on The 2021 Christmas Countdown - Dave Brubeck and his sons performing A Special Christmas Song in 1996. We had the pleasure of seeing Dave Brubeck twice. First time was July 4th Weekend 1969 at the first Atlanta International Pop Festival. For some reason, Brubeck was the only jazz artist featured in three days of pure rock and roll. What an amazing weekend of music hearing Brubeck along with the likes of Led Zeppelin, Janis Joplin and Canned Heat. I was mesmerized watching and listening to this amazing artist. Then, we saw him again in 2006 at Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater, Florida at the age of 86. Again - mesmerized.


The second piece today is performed by a very good friend who just happens to be an amazing pianist and musical artist. Please enjoy this version of The Christmas Song with a very polished group of players from my good friend Regi Stone.


And from a group of very innovative musicians - THE PIANO GUYS bring you - ANGELS WE HAVE HEARD ON HIGH (Christmas with 32 fingers and 8 thumbs).


Only four days! I gotta get some things wrapped. And don't you just love AMAZON!!!

Merry Christmas

D.L.Stafford

Tuesday, December 21, 2021

MERCY ME ON TUESDAY BEFORE CHRISTMAS - THESE BOYS CAN PLAY AND SING LIKE CRAZY - NO. 5 ON THE 2021 CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN


Since 1994, MERCY ME, an innovative Contemporary Christian Band, has brought a whole new sound to gospel music. Bart Millard, the lead singer, has a voice that just grabs you with every phrase. And the band is always blistering or subtle as each tune demands. They always deliver great musicianship on every tune. These guys are not your typical contemporary Christian group. They are constantly looking for new musical innovations to present the Gospel.

Enjoy a very cool rock/pop number by MERCYME - NO. 5 on THE 2021 CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN - CHRISTMAS TIME AGAIN.


Today's bonus track, not a Christmas song, features MERCYME doing a very funky song about change and living the good life. The video is outstanding with the band and an ensemble of dancers to get the message across.


Ir's Tuesday - so get up and sing and dance. Christmas is only five days away.

Merry Christmas

D.L.Stafford

Monday, December 20, 2021

HOW ABOUT A LITTLE R&B THE MONDAY BEFORE CHRISTMAS FROM KEB MO' AND FREINDS - NO. 6 ON THE 2021 CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN

The first time I heard KEB MO', I was hooked. His lyrics, his voice and his jamming on the guitar deliver some of the best R&B you will ever hear. I saw this winner of five Grammys live right here in my hometown at the thirty-five-year-old venue - THE MOON. Keb Mo brings poetry to life with the blues. Some blues players can't seem to find anything new to sing or play. But Keb Mo' is always developing something innovative with a new way to hear the blues.

First up today - KEB performs a great innovative Christmas tune written by Koko Taylor around 2009. The video shows KEB playing this tune to get the party going - NO. 6 on the 2021 CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWNMERRY MERRY CHRISTMAS,  


And, in today's Bonus Track, KEB mixes it up with the Tony Award winning singer/actress Kristin Chenoweth on another great Christmas tune. A nice blues arrangement of MERRY CHRISTMAS BABY.


It's Monday and we're headed to the big day.

Merry Christmas

D.L.Stafford

Sunday, December 19, 2021

ON THE LAST SUNDAY BEFORE CHRISTMAS - ENJOY SOME AMAZING POWER SINGING FOR NO. 7 ON THE 2021 CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN


I am a tenor. I have been singing loud and proud my entire life. On this Countdown, you will hear some of the best tenors singing today. When you hear a great tenor sing, especially the ones on today's Countdown, you realize the magic and power of the human voice as they go up into the stratosphere with complete control of their voice to bring the true power of any song to your ears and your soul. And the women singers today take it to another level as well.

First up today features one of the greatest Gospel Tenors to ever grace a stage. David Phelps has performed all of the world and has been in and out of the Gaither Vocal Band since 1997. Phelps is a countertenor, which means he can sing well into the alto range vocally. Winner of two Grammys and four Doves, he is a true power singer with vocal subtlety and control. The last note in this performance is insanely high and perfect. NO. 7 on THE 2021 CHRISTMAS COUNTDOWN - DAVID PHELPS and OH HOLY NIGHT.


Second tune today - Winners of five Dove Awards and three Grammy nominations - two sisters and a brother bring power singing to a Christmas Classic - The Martins singing Rejoice With Exceeding Great Joy!

 

And Bonus Track No.  2 - The amazing and talented trio - THREE MO' TENORS perform a medley combining HAVE YOU HEARD ABOUT THE BABY JESUS & GLORY TO THE NEWBORN KING.


I hope these tunes will brighten your day. It's the greatest time of year.


Merry Christmas

D.L.Stafford