That Christmas Feeling

Katie Eagleson

A collection of songs celebrating and honoring the Christmas season.

I hope you’ll enjoy listening to the songs on this recording. It’s a bit of a departure from our earlier CDs, in that Lenny didn’t put any limitations on his arrangements, so you’ll be hearing some instrumentation that you’ve not heard from us before. It was a lot of fun. Most of the songs we ended up choosing have been favorites of mine for a long time, but not all. Of course, Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas is a favorite of lots of people. I’m a fan of Judy Garland, who introduced it in Meet Me in St. Louis. I was drawn to the melancholy lyrics that she sang in the movie. We decided to use the more uplifting version that has become popular since then, just in case not everyone likes a good sad song like I do. I realized during this process that Bing Crosby had a big role in forming my Christmas song taste. White Christmas, Count Your Blessings, and That Christmas Feeling all are imprinted in my brain with his voice singing them. In fact, I couldn’t find any other recording of our title track. I only was able to find the sheet music (including verse) after contacting Jimmy Van Heusen’s grandnephew. I like the song because the words and music are both simple and to the point, well suited to each other.
Caroling, Caroling and Il est ne le Divin Enfant are songs I sang in Glee Club at my high school, Ravenhill Academy in Philadelphia. Glee Club was one of the most fun things I was involved in at school, especially at Christmas time. Thank you Mr. Fiss, wherever you are. I’ve just recently learned A Christmas Love Song. My husband, Lenny introduced me to it. You can’t go wrong with Johnny Mandel and the Bergmans. Some Children See Him has an interesting history. Alfred Burt, the composer, (who also wrote Caroling, Caroling) wrote the music to one Christmas carol every year, which he included in his annual Christmas card. It wasn’t until after his death that they were all performed in public.
In the Bleak Midwinter reminds me of my dad, gone many years now. He loved the Christmas story, “The Juggler” about a poor man whose only talent was juggling, so on Christmas Eve, after others had laid gifts of great worth at the foot of the statue of the Blessed Mother, he decided to juggle for her; the statue came to life and Mary smiled at him. It’s what’s in your heart that matters. Nat King Cole introduced me to A Cradle in Bethlehem. This song has taken on special meaning to me this year. I lost my mom during the recording of this CD. She was 100 years old. When I played her our recording of this song one night as she lay in bed, her eyes started to fill with tears. Because of dementia she couldn’t express herself, but I’d like to think that it touched her in a way that music can so powerfully do. When I was growing up, my mom and dad had a party every New Year’s Eve. At midnight, we would all stand in a circle in our living room, cross arms, and hold the hands of the people on either side of us, as we sang Auld Lang Syne… a toast to friends and days gone by. A perfect way to welcome in the new year.

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