On Sept. 30, get ready for Michael W. Smith & Friends: The Spirit of Christmas, featuring an all-star lineup of guests – Vince Gill, Lady Antebellum, Little Big Town, Martina McBride, Amy Grant, Carrie Underwood, Jennifer Nettles, Bono and Michael McDonald.
An acclaimed singer, songwriter and musician who has sold more than 15 million albums, Michael W. Smith & Friends: The Spirit of Christmas is Smith’s fourth Christmas project, following the successful releases of Michael W. Smith Christmas (1989), Christmastime (1998) and It’s A Wonderful Christmas (2007).
“This is the most unique and unusual record I’ve ever done in my 31-year career. The entire record was sequenced together before we recorded one song,” recalls Smith. “Sonically you’re hearing me in a way that you’ve probably never heard me before. At one point it’s like Smitty meets Bublé. There’s my granddaughter’s voice singing the song from ‘Home Alone,’ plus the whole orchestral and symphonic feeling of Christmas, mixed together with all these amazing voices and guests – yet it all fits together in a remarkable way.”
Thank you so much for reading Christian Music Makers. It’s a joy to bring you news about Christian and Gospel music artists year round, and I hope you celebrate Jesus this Christmas with family, friends and music. –Mark Weber
Here’s a song I wrote for those who are sad at Christmas:
Christian music maker Ashley Cleveland heads to Nome, Alaska this January for a women’s conference that’s part of “Missions Alaska,” which includes an outreach program to the native community. It’s Cleveland’s first ever visit to Alaska, and takes place right before her 57th birthday. Other concert spots in 2014 include California, Texas, Ontario and British Columbia.
Owl City, which is really just one guy– Adam Young– has paired up with TobyMac on the Christmas song, “Light of Christmas.” The song, from the new VeggieTales DVD, Merry Larry and the True Light of Christmas, is the only new Christmas song this season on Christian radio, and it’s a hit!
Well here’s something totally unexpected for Christmastime… it’s Jeff Sparks with Canton Jones, Ann Nesby and Shonlock. The song is “Silver Bells,” but not the one you’re thinking of– this one’s more of a 2013 take on a Christmas classic, with a hip-hop edge and the divalicious voice of Ms. Nesby. Don’t forget the nice sax in the upbeat song. Cool! Props to video director Darryl D. Lassiter. –Mark Weber