Ann Hampton Calloway – The Hope of Christmas

December 25, 2015 / No Comments / Tags: Ann Hampton Callaway, Gerald Albright, Hubert Laws, james genus, Mark Walker, Mary Ehlinger, Michael Davis, Michael Feinstein, Milton Delugg, New York Voices, Sherrie Maricale, Stephen Fox, steve wilson, Ted Rosenthal,, Wesley Whatley

(MCG Jazz)

Creating a new album of songs to express the well-worn path of December standards is a tall order, but that’s exactly what songwriter William Schermerhorn does incredibly well with this project. On The Hope of Christmas, vocalist Ann Hampton Calloway is enlisted to bring the words Schermerman developed with the help of a bevy of co-writers, including the singer. Other collaborators on the effort include Wesley Whatley, Stephen Fox, Mary Ehlinger, Michael Feinstein  and Milton Delugg. The music is wonderful original and contemporary with many capturing the feel of the standards and others bringing an entirely new vibe to the table. It’s soulful. It’s jazzy and it works. Hampton Calloway’s delivery of the tunes is ideal for the project. Guests on the effort include saxophonist Gerald Albright, vocal quartet New York Voices, flutist Hubert Laws, trombonists Steve Wilson and Michael Davis, bassist James Genus, pianist Ted Rosenthal and drummers Sherrie Maricale and Mark Walker, among others. This recording is a welcome addition to the new holiday music collection.

Click to listen to a clip of “Christmas Isn’t Christmas At All”:

Tracks: On Union Street (A Christmas Toast), The Hope of Christmas, One Star, Discovery, I Believe, I Saw A Sparrow, Santa Doesn’t Like Me, Christmas Isn’t Christmas At All, I Want To Play Santa, What Good Is Being Cranky, My Gift of Thanks, Fly With Angels.