Rich in musical diversity, Christmas Is Here
takes listeners on a nostalgic journey through the most anticipated time of the year. "I want people to just hear a song and slip back into the past,
Heath says. Good Christmas music is really about sparking people's memories."
Heath has dreamed of creating a Christmas album for a long time and invited some friends to join him in the studio to make the process memorable. Sonja Isaacs, Ellie Holcomb and Matt Wertz all contributed background vocals, and Ben Shive (Andrew Peterson, Matt Wertz) produced the album. The award-winning songwriter looked to some of his favorite Christmas albums for inspiration-recordings by Nat King Cole, Harry Connick, Jr., Patty Loveless and Kenny & Dolly-desiring to craft a timeless release fans would want to pull out year after year. Reflecting his influences, Christmas Is Here
features three originals and seven classics, including traditional arrangements of The Christmas Song, O Come All Ye Faithful / Angels We Have Heard on High, Silent Night
and The Bleak Midwinter,
among others. The well-known Christmas songs showcase a spectrum of sounds ranging from big band to a cappella to bluegrass. Two of the three new cuts reveal Heath's witty personality that has endeared the hit-making award winner to audiences. The Day After Thanksgiving
pokes fun at the Christmas commercialism that sets in at the end of summer, leading most to completely overlook fall, one of Heath's favorite times of year. Momma Wouldn't Lie to Me
is equally as lighthearted, with Heath putting his parents on the spot for the truth about Santa, mirroring a real-life conversation from his childhood. "Rest assured, no child-like beliefs will be harmed due to the listening of the song. No spoilers!"
Heath proclaims. In his trademark storyteller fashion, Heath highlights a lesser known character in the Christmas story on Just A Girl
-the innkeeper who turned Mary and Joseph away. "I took a little creative license to tell what happened,"
he explains. Through the innkeeper's eyes, Mary is seen as an ordinary girl, but Heath notes the irony of the scene. "There's a story [about] when a non-believer asked a Catholic, ‘Why is Mary so crucial to the Christmas story?' And the Catholic says, ‘She's just a girl who said yes.' I think that says a lot for us,"
Heath offers. "God is often giving us opportunities we don't realize the significance of, but we just need to say yes. God can do things though ordinary people. Mary was just a girl, but she was also a catalyst in a huge event in the rest of history."
- Release Date: October 15, 2013
- Record Label: Reunion Records
- UPC: 602341018623
- Number of Discs: 1
Listen Before You Buy