Saturday, December 23, 2006

'Tis the season for free music

One last post about Christmas music before it's Christmas...
I wanted to share a few more tracks that artists I like have made available for the season. It is the season for giving and here are a few more artists giving us Christmas songs!

Hem is offering up their lovely rendition of "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas". Hem is a great folk/americana band that sounds a bit like country and folk lullabies, they're really great and a band that can definitely pull off a Christmas carol.

Sufjan Stevens, one of the latest indie darlings, has released a whole box set including 5 EPs of original Christmas songs, stickers and other various sundries to keep you in the spirit. He is making one of the songs from this set available to all of us, and it's a nice one.

Jonatha Brooke makes her rendition of "Emmanuel" available on her website every December. I love Jonatha, she's got some great lyrics and great tunes. This version of Emmanuel is so sad sounding. I never understood why Emmanuel was usually sung so somberly as someone telling me to "rejoice!" when it doesn't sound like they are doing it themselves. Hmm...all the same, it's pretty and worth a listen.

Wild Colonials have made their Christmas original "Christmas is Quiet" available on their MySpace page. This song doesn't scream Christmas to me, but the Wild Colonials are so good, who cares? Angela McCluskey has such a unique and strong voice and I love their use of violin in most everything they do.

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Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Fisher - "December"

Fisher is named after front-woman Kathy Fisher, but it is a husband and wife duo with her husband Ron Wasserman. They found initial success when the internet first started to get big via the website At the time, the website was a free website where bands could host their music to get more exposure, more like MySpace acts today. Fisher was one of the tops downloads and they earned a record contract because of their internet success and even appeared on the Tonight Show and Kathy was interviewed. Since then, their exposure has fizzled but they still have a supportive fanbase on the internet. They make most of their living doing jingles for commercials now, no doubt you've heard their work before and didn't realize it. There are clips of their commercial songs available on their site as well as tracks from their albums as well. I discovered them on the Great Expectations soundtrack, though. I loved the song but knew nothing of the band. A year later I happened upon their album at a used CD store and knew it was meant to be. I loved that album (One) and ended up contacting the band and got to interview Kathy on my college radio program and did some promotional stuff (call-in's to win merchandise of theirs) before the release of their major label debut "True North".

Fisher's voice is what makes her worth noting, though I cannot discount the songs, as many of them are absolutely stellar. Her voice is deep and interesting and very rich. It may not be for everyone but it has a strength to it I love. My brother just said it sounds like she needs a lozenge. So it goes.

The purpose of this entry, though, is to announce that they have made their Christmas EP "December" available as a free download on their website. The EP is no longer available for sale, therefore they're not losing any money by offering it up to the public. They also have recorded two new Christmas tracks so I thought I would share those links here...enjoy!

(Follow the website link above for the rest of their Christmas tracks)

Music from Fisher's album "One" (left clicks):

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