Monday, December 21, 2009

Jerry Christmas: Jerry Douglas

Jerry Douglas

Jerry Christmas

Jerry Douglas was a bit hesitant when he came to recording Christmas music. The Nashville based musician has played on hundreds of recordings, been part of Transatlantic Sessions for years, and has many other fine musical credits, still, these are classics which many have recorded. Douglas needn’t have been concerned. Jerry Christmas lives up to its title because is just that -- this fine instrumentalist’s unique touch, ideas, and style in service of seasonal pieces, both sacred and secular.

Aside from Douglas doing a ‘scary Santa voice’ on Santa Claus is Coming to Town, there is only one song. Maura O’Connell, who has often worked with Douglas before, lends her voice to Boo Hewerdine’s quiet meditation on sadness and hope, New Year’s Eve, and offers a spot on reading of the bittersweet emotion of the song. Douglas does that too across the music he’s chosen, expressing varied emotion with no words at all on The First Noel, In the Bleak Midwinter, Christmas Time Is Here, and an especially lovely take on Mary, Did You Know? Luke Bulla, Todd Parks, Gordie Trapp, and Doug Belote do an excellent job of supporting and framing Douglas’s work on Dobro, lap steel guitar, and electric guitar. It’s a very fine collection of familiar music made new, played with creativity and grace.

you may also want to see

Music Road: Dave Carter & Tracy Grammer: American Noel
Music Road: Kathy Mattea: Mary Did You Know?
Music Road: now playing: Ottmar Liebert: Christmas + Santa Fe

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posted by Kerry Dexter at


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