Sunday, December 08, 2013

Christmas Concert, 2013 (Introducing, "Have a P.D. Christmas")

A public domain Christmas concert, featuring your favorite blogger/musician, me.  The first zip contains two versions of my new song, Have a P.D. Christmas--one with a vocal (me), the other without.  Yes, you get to hear me sing.

The words:

Have a P.D. Christmas,
Stay in the public domain.
Don't think, because the stuff you post is old, that they'll stay away.

Have a public domain Christmas,
Be careful of what you're hosting.
Or Santa Cop will put a stop
To your Christmas posting.

Lee Hartsfeld, 2013

(Copyright notice: Anyone swiping these brilliant lyrics without permission will be lashed repeatedly with a wet noodle.  Copyright valid throughout time and space.)

Have a P.D. Christmas (Hartsfeld)--Lee Hartsfeld

My only excuse is that I was working fast.  I recorded from a scribbled semi-arrangement, laying down piano, jazz organ, and alto sax tracks.  I ad-libbed a bass line to give things more movement, and I managed to get two (combined) vocal tracks with my ultra-cheap microphone, a microphone that nearly refused to work with my Roland Duo-Capture.  I used to have a lovely, high-quality Radio Shack mic, but I left it out where one or more of the male cats was able to "mark" it--so, into the trash it went.  Cat pee goes badly with just about everything, especially electronics.

The tones are from my excellent Casio WK-3800, and the multi-tracking was accomplished on my Sonar X-2 program.  Then edited and echoized on Magix.  Yes, that was.  A sentence fragment.

The second zip contains fourteen Christmas hymns, carols, and pop numbers.  Two are repeats--Santa Claus (Up on the Housetop), and The One Horse Open Sleigh, which has received more than 1500 downloads at (since Jan., 2011), making it my all-time champ in that regard.  It's the song as it originally existed; I'm playing it from an 1872 tunebook.  The music:

I think I came up with some cool instrumentations on these--a few sound like medium-sized chamber ensembles.  Laugh at Casio at your own peril, I say....

Christmas Carols, Hymns, Songs--Lee Hartsfeld, Casio WK-3800.

Let the Earth Now Praise the Lord
God Is Working His Purpose Out (Kingham)
Christ Is Born in Bethlehem
Herr Jesu Christ, wahr Mensch und Gott (Zachau)
Christians, Awake! (Wainwright)
The One Horse Open Sleigh (James Pierpont)
Santa Claus (S.S. Myers)
Come Hither, Ye Children
Thou Didst Leave Thy Throne (Matthews)
On the Night When Jesus Came (Polish carol)
Today the Virgin Has Borne a Child (Swedish carol--Middle Ages)
On Jordan's Banks 
Come Thou Precious Ransom Come
Christ Is Born of Maiden Fair (Dr. Gauntlet)

Played by Lee Hartsfeld, Casio WK-3800

These zips should survive.  After all, there's no 1950 Merv in the bunch.  No 30- and 40-year-old singles no one ever heard of, etc.

There's something I wanted to add to my essay, but I can't remember what.  It'll probably pop back in my head about 4:30 am or so.



Stroller Girl said...

Hi, I am just curious if you can help point me in the right direction. my brother pointed me to this blog. I am looking for a specific album about Christmas music. My mom played the record (which was old in the 80's) every Christmas. It has songs such as Nuttin for Christmas, wooden soldier on parade with words, not the musical version. I have been googling and searching amazons music to find it. I really want to purchase and have a copy for my kids. But I have no idea what the name of the album is? I don't know how old the record is. My mom had children spanning 3 decades or it could have been from a thrift store? Please can you help me :)

Lee Hartsfeld said...

My best guess would be "A Child's Christmas," on the Harmony label. See bottom of this page:

I saw some copies on eBay. As far as I can see, no CD reissue exists.

Chris said...

Thanks, Lee. Looking forward to hearing your creativity at work.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for all the wonderful music you've shared over the years. Sorry to see you're being forced to "retire." Damn shame. Merry Christmas, anyway.