The holliday season is upon us once again and it’s time for a new bluegrass Christmas CD. Christmas Grass Vol. 3 is great addition to the iTunes collection. I personally enjoy Christmas music very much, especially when it’s this well done.
The subtitle for the CD is Featuring 3 Fox Drive and Friends. That should give you a clue as to the quality of singing on this recording. Astral is the only word I can come up with that comes close. Kim, Barb, and Joel Fox provide the harmonies all through the CD, and they are certainly out of this world. The Fox family members (3 Fox Drive) also handle lead vocal duties on good number of tunes, including O Holy Night, White Christmas, and others. Their version of O Holy Night is easily one of the best I’ve ever heard.
The instrumental performances on this recording are fantastic. Tasteful, mature playing is exhibited throughout by such illuminaries as Darrin Vincent, Byron House, Bryan Sutton, Cody Kilby, Adam Steffey, Aubrey Haynie, Joe CaverLee, Rob Ickes, Joel Fox and Eric Darken.
In addition to the instrumental guests, the singing of the Fox Family is augmented by a few noteworthy guest vocalists as well.
Sonya Isaacs joins Kim for a duet on the first track, New Star Shining. The song sets the standard for the rest of the CD, and the whole project measures up.
John Cowan delivers a somewhat bluesy version of Please Come Home For Christmas. It’s a great blend of blues, bluegrass, and Christmas music that really gets the foot tapping along.
One of the highlights of the CD is I Heard The Bells On Christmas Day. Bluegrass legend Larry Sparks steps up to the microphone for a turn as lead vocalist on this one. I’m a fan of Sparks anyway, and he really cuts it on this track, as only he can.
IIIrd Tyme Out lead vocalist, Russell Moore delivers a silky smooth version of Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas. Russell has got to be one of the greatest singers in any genre of music, and he proves it here. Wow!
The last cut on the CD deserves special mention for sure. Watching Over The Soldiers At Christmas was c0-written by Kim Fox, and she sings it with conviction. The song is sung from the perspective of the American Flag flying high overhead and keeping an eye on our boys serving far from home on Christmas. Toward the end of the song, a military snare roll is introduced in the background as an accent to Charlie Daniels recitation of the Pleg of Allegiance. The song is patriotic for sure, but in a way that is not at all out of line with the spirit of the Christmas season presented by the preceeding songs on the CD. It’s one of my favorites on the disc.
This CD will get some pretty heavy rotation in my iTunes playlists for the next couple of months I’m sure. If you like Christmas music I suggest you pick a copy up for yourself. It’ll make great presents as well. I’m ordering several copies myself for that very purpose!