Well… now that Thanksgiving is safely in the rear view window, it’s safe to start talking about – and listening to – Christmas music. And as always, bluegrass artists have a good many new songs and albums to share this holiday season.
Over the next few weeks, we will highlight as many of them as we can, along with special Christmas tours and shows that take live bluegrass and acoustic holiday music to the people.
Let’s start today with a new version of a recent favorite, by Greg Blake & Annie Savage. New Star Shining was written by John and Joanna Hall, and introduced to the bluegrass and country music audience by Ricky Skaggs singing in duet with James Taylor in 1986. Now Greg and Annie have their take, done as a male/female duet, retelling the familiar Nativity story. Blake’s rich baritone is perfect on this number, supported by guitar, Annie’s fiddle, and steel guitar.
Savage, who has worked with and known Greg for years, says that she thought of him as soon as the notion of recording this song came to her mind.
“It was a joy to record this traditional nativity song with my own son in mind. As a mother, I wanted to hear the song as a male and female duet. There was no one more perfect to record the male vocal than my bandmate from Jeff Scroggins and Colorado, Greg Blake. He is a minister from years ago and his rendering of Gospel music always sends my heart straight to the altar for a renewal of faith.”