Wednesday, December 15, 2010
The other day I saw a show on PBS about the Andy Williams Christmas specials and it took me back to my childhood.
We used to watch those specials every year when I was a kid and the memory prompted me to dig through my old records to find a Christmas album my family had for many years.
It was by a group simply called The Christmas Singers and they were apparently accompanied only by an organist that knew how to pump up the volume.
One of the members of The Christmas Singers sounded suspiciously like Burl Ives, but he wasn't credited on the album sleeve.
The Christmas Singers weren't always in harmony, but all of that, plus the cheesy organ, still warms my heart now more than 40 years later.
I think it's the simplicity of it all, like those Andy Williams specials. The choreography was very basic and, in the case of the Williams specials, the performers were usually family members.
I'm not against technology, mind you, but simple things at Christmas like a child's song or a snowflake seem to be appealing this time of year.
Maybe that's because we're celebrating the birth of Jesus, a very simple, humble arrival in a manger.
While the message is one for eternity and was accompanied by angels on high, the way Jesus Messiah came to earth as a helpless baby in a manger is about as simple and humble as it gets.
Long live The Christmas Singers and their ilk, not slickly polished performers, but humbly singing their hearts out, like children in a Christmas program.