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The Better Halves | Con Amor

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Anne Murray Bing Crosby Tchaikovsky

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United States - Texas

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Holiday: Kids/Family Holiday: Country Moods: Mood: Seasonal
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Con Amor

by The Better Halves

The world needs some new Christmas songs, and this album offers 9 originals that capture the heart of the holidays, along with a few classics that include a traditional villancico in Spanish!
Genre: Holiday: Kids/Family
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. A Texas Christmas
4:21 $1.25
2. Is Santa Real?
4:17 $1.25
3. Winter Solstice
3:18 $1.25
4. Every Day Is Christmas with You
3:05 $1.25
5. Flor De Nochebuena
4:16 $1.25
6. A Christmas Disaster
3:07 $1.25
7. Silver Bells
3:23 $1.25
8. Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy
1:52 $1.25
9. Christmas Wishes
3:26 $1.25
10. Jessica's Lament
3:22 $1.25
11. Christmas Balloon
4:43 $1.25
12. Los Peces En El Río
3:10 $1.25
13. January Fifth
2:24 $1.25
14. Shchedryk (Ukrainian Bell Carol)
1:55 $1.25
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
For a decade, Chrissie and Jimmy Joe made it their goal to write a new Christmas song every year. This album is the culmination of that creative process, and a wonderful collection of many new, and a few familiar, holiday songs.

The album kicks off with a stirring piece of Carol of the Bells that introduces the first song, a hot Texas-swing, tongue-in-cheek look at the season in the Lone Star state. The next song, in the simple combination of voice and piano, reveals the loving relationship between mother and child, especially poignant at this special time of year, in the question of whether Santa is real and what that really means. The listeners ears are next greeted with a chorus singing joyfully about the Solstice and the coming days of light and warmth.

"Flor de Nochebuena" is a favorite track. Produced with a Latin flair, with accordion, Spanish-style guitar, and fun percussion, this song is based on a real legend from Mexico that tells the miraculous story of why the poinsettia (flor de nochebuena in Spanish) blooms at Christmas time.

"A Christmas Disaster" is a song that Jimmy Joe Natoli wrote while doing a songwriting workshop with a group of Alzheimer's patients. It's a true story of one woman's Christmas memory, and comes to life with Chrissie's cute vocals, ukulele and toy paino.

Next comes the section of familiar songs, starting with "Silver Bells", which was Chrissie's mother's favorite holiday song and which the duo loves to sing in the duet style of Bing Crosby and Carol Richards. No Better Halves album would be complete without a guitar instrumental or two, hence follows "Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy." "Christmas Wishes" is an Anne Murray song that Chrissie discovered on a Firestone compliation album in her childhood and always remembered fondly and wanted to share with the world, and which is beautifully recorded with flute and guitar.

Always thinking of things from various persepctives, Chrissie wondered how Mrs. Claus (whose name is not known for sure, but several sources call her Jessica) felt when her husband left her every Christmas Eve to do his duty to the world. So was born the next song, a beautiful duet with haunting cello.

"Christmas Balloon" is a co-write with fellow Austin songwriter Sue Young. Based on a true story from Reader's Digest, and rounded-out musically with sweet violin, this is sure to be the tear-jerker of the album about a man who saved Christmas for a little girl and her family.

Chrissie's adventures in learning Spanish led her to the song (known as a villancico, or traditional carol, in Spanish) "Los peces en el río. But it was Jimmy Joe who fell in love with the arabesque music and learned the lyrics in Spanish. It was a special treat to have the talented Colombian artist Diana Naranjo sing along!

"January Fifth" was actually written on that date during a songwriting challenge that started at the beginning of the year and is a
melancholy, sparsely instrumented song with clarinet, guitar and voice. To not leave things on a somber note, the album ends with a reprise of "Carol of the Bells."



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