Friday, December 25, 2009

Christmas 2009 - Update

Am in a sentimental mood and wanted to share some favorite music today.  To hear the two mp3s, Kindle Edition subscribers would go to A Kindle World via computer and put "christmas" in the upper left searchbox (and I would like also to thank subscribers for the support of this site with your subscriptions, and I hope it'll continue to be useful).

The first piece is sung by Judy Frankel, who died last year, too early, and is a Sephardic lullaby, one of the more beautiful ones I've heard -- Durme, hermoza donzelle.  That file is quite large, so phone-modem visitors should download instead the smaller file in lower fidelity but a 10x faster download.

The other piece is a favorite from long ago when I first heard it on the sidewalks on Christmas Eve.  I have it on LP still. It's from a poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.   The full poem and lyrics are at the linked page.

  Here's an mp3 of the music I heard back then by (oldtimers) Fred Waring and the Pennsylvanians.  The re-released album, on CD, is currently unavailable though probably only temporarily, but if you like the mp3 you might want to look for the album next Christmas :-)  I love the set.
  Here are some verses from the song.

" I heard the bells on Christmas Day
Their old, familiar carols play,
And wild and sweet
The words repeat
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!
. . .
Till, ringing, singing on its way
The world revolved from night to day,
A voice, a chime,
A chant sublime
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!
. . .
And in despair I bowed my head;
‘There is no peace on earth,’ I said;
‘For hate is strong,
And mocks the song
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!’

Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:
‘God is not dead; nor doth he sleep!
The Wrong shall fail,
The Right prevail,
With peace on earth, good-will to men!’ "

Well, we can hope.

And then there's an interesting solo variant of this by Harry Belafonte online though it doesn't have the change of tone along with verse that the choral one has.
 It's a personal rendition.  Caution, these songs do not rock ;-).

A great Christmas to all, and I'll get back to the Kindle and books tomorrow :-) Below are ways to Share this post if you'd like others to see it.
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  1. Andrys,

    Merry Christmas to you, as well, and thanks for the lyrical stocking stuffer! We're "blizzarded" in here in the Midwest, so the songs will provide a nice accompaniment to an unplanned "inside day." ;-0 Take care, and I'll see you in 2010.

  2. Thank you, Andrys - I Heard the Bells is one of my very favorites too and I live in Fred Waring country (State College, PA). The Spanish carol is also marvelous and I love Belafonte! Thanks for sharing and Merry Christmas to you!
    Chanteuse64 on Twitter

  3. Batman, I hope the blizzard is mild! and everyone's warm where you are (and well fed!)

    Here's to 2010.

  4. Chanteuse64,
    Kindred Christmas music spirit, glad you enjoyed those. The Sephardic lullaby is one of the many that Judy gathered from her travels and sang for those interested. She should have been heard by more, so this seemed fitting. Thanks.

  5. Andrys,

    Hi again. I know it's not 2010 yet :-), but I couldn't get either of the links to work. I just get a white screen, with "Done" showing in the lower left corner. I tried clicking and checking back after three hours (clearing snow!), but no luck. Any clues for the clueless? Thanks!

  6. Batman,

    Sorry about the links. Others have been able to get them. Do you have your computer configured to play mp3's (that's all they are) after downloading them?

    All this does is let you download them. I didn't make them "streaming m3u's" because the server was just downloading them anyway, without playing them right away for some reason though it used to stream m3u's fine.

    Do you know what subdirectory or folder your downloads go to automatically? That's where they would be. And then you can play them from there.

    Let me know.

  7. Okay, I'm not sure what's up with the laptop, but I got them to play on my iMac - very nice tunes. Thanks again.

  8. Batman,
    Glad it's working on one of them. And now it'll be another 360 days before you want to hear any carol ! :-)


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