Every year people ask when I’m going to release a Christmas Album. My response has been, “I love Christmas music . . . perhaps one day I’ll get to enter that special company of artists who have recorded a Christmas album.” I know what I was waiting for. I was waiting until I had something to say. I feel like that time has finally come. I have original songs that sound like me, sound like Christmas and they say what I want to say. I also have some favourites carols that I’m longing to cover.
My Christmas album blends themes of joy, peace and even a hint of sadness. My mother passed away in November five years ago and going through that first Christmas without her was very difficult. Out of that experience I wrote ‘Saddest Season.’ The album also includes a new version of my well known song 'Hope of the Nations' with special Christmas lyrics as well as songs of joy and worship at the heart of the Christmas story.
One of our traditions when our children were younger was listening to 3 Christmas songs each December evening before bedtime. (This was long before streaming services with playlists so I had to physically change the album for each song.) Amy Grant’s ‘Home for Christmas’ album from the early 90’s was a staple in our home (isn't ‘Breath of Heaven’ amazing?) and we all celebrated the joy of this festive season with her version of ‘Rocking around the Christmas tree’ which got our girls doing just that! Perhaps some of you have similar traditions . . . Christmas music helps bring our families together.
My Christmas album will feature 8 original songs and 4 of my Christmas favourites. It’s being produced by Philip Janz, producer of my JUNO award winning album HOLY GOD and my best-selling album TODAY. I’m joined by good friends Brian Thiessen on guitars, Matt Weeks on bass and Flugel horn, plus the amazing Calvin Dyck on violin (I love the sound of real violins mixed in with a full modern band!) The song arrangements and production direction are similar to my recent album ‘Grateful’ as well as my earlier album ‘Today’; a solid band, some soaring violin parts and some beautiful female vocals and various special guests. The album will be relaxing and meaningful.
Each song costs approx. $2,500 CDN to record. This covers preproduction (creating the arrangements, writing the music for the violin section), studio time, engineering, producing, mixing, session fees for the musicians and singers and final mastering. Producing the audio master for a 12 song album and then adding the costs of photography, design and manufacturing the first units means the total project will cost between $35,000 - $40,000 (with marketing costs on top). As I don’t have a record label funding this project you have an opportunity to be my partner.
Here’s what you can do:
1. Pledge to pre-purchase the physical or digital album and get the first 2 already recorded songs now as a digital download and get an early Christmas present in 2019 when it arrives on your doorstep in the lead up to next Christmas. This is something that virtually everyone can do, because we all can afford to spend a few dollars on music that we value.
2.Become a patron. Art has always been supported by patrons; people who value artistic expression enough to fund its creation. We're living in a time where friends and patrons literally make the difference between albums getting made or not, partly because the streaming model does not generate enough income to pay for a professional recording budget. There are various levels of patronage open to you, including opportunities for you to connect with me personally.
Thank you in advance for joining me on this journey to the heart of Christmas. I can hardly wait to share the finished album with you!
With love and anticipation,
Risks and challenges
This will be my my 8th full length solo album, the most recent one being Grateful which was released 1 year ago. Grateful was completely self funded and met all our own timeline deadlines. You can be confident that I'm determined to see this vision through and as I've given myself a full year to record this Christmas album, I know I'll beat the deadlines we have set.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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