Here's some information about the two hours of new music and tales we've assembled for 2001. Year 3 of Ornaments and Icing again offered singers, musicians and storytellers the chance to be heard across the country and, through this medium, indeed around the world.

This program was assembled for the National Public Radio network. The show is simple: Each artist records their own interpretation of a classic carol they've always loved, or puts forward a new seasonal song. In either case, it's to be an unreleased recording. Perhaps it's the potluck of holiday musical specials, with everyone bringing their own offering to the party!

We call the songs "Ornaments" and this year there are 24 of them. Pete Huttlinger's beautiful rendering of "Coventry Carol," Kate Rusby on the British pub version of "The Holly and the Ivy," and Josh White, Jr. on our traditional show closer, Mel Torme's "The Christmas Song" will let you bask in tasty interpretations of familiar tunes. Julie Gold's "Merry Christmas (Peace, Peace, Peace)," Stephen Fearing's catchy ditty "Whoville," and Mary Chapin Carpenter's hauntingly joyous "Bells Are Ringing" will keep you in the spirit of the holidays with brand new songs.

Stories are our "Icing." David Massengill takes us up into the hills on the Christmas rounds of a country preacher. Christine Lavin tries, as only she can, to explain to her niece why we decorate Christmas trees. And myself, Joe Gunderman, I respond to the events that changed all of us this year.

Our traditional curtain call reading of "The Night Before Christmas" brings you 27 different artists from both hours! It happens near the end of the second hour, and gets the "gang" together for a special moment.

These are performances you've never heard before; most premier here. Add to the songs some nugget-size anecdotes by the musicians, and visits with Odetta and Ramblin' Jack Elliot, and you've got "Ornaments and Icing, Songs and Stories of the Holidays." Enjoy!

Whether you catch it on an NPR station, or here off the web, I hope you enjoy the show and have a wonderful holiday season.

--Joe Gunderman, Producer

Listen to the show on-air on 89.7 WKSU on Friday, December 28 at 8 p.m.

The details of the songs featured in both hours follow...

Hour One

Click on each link below to learn more about the performer(s) and the contributed song.

Snowbound -- Al & Emily Cantrell
The Christmas Ship -- Lee Murdock
Ave Maria -- Beth Nielsen Chapman
Years -- Priscilla Herdman, Anne Hills, Cindy Mangsen
Emmanuel -- Janis Ian
The Boy Who Doubted Santy Claus -- David Massengill
I Wonder As I Wander / Simple Gifts -- The Nashville Mandolin Ensemble
Ain't That Rocking & Shout For Joy -- Odetta
50 Years Ago -- Rob Ickes
The Runaway Christmas Tree -- Christine Lavin
Christmas Carol -- The Juggernaut Jug Band
Bells Are Ringing -- Mary Chapin Carpenter
Happy Christmas (War Is Over) -- Don Conoscenti

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Hour Two

Click on each link below to learn more about the performer(s) and the contributed song.

Merry Christmas (Peace, Peace, Peace) -- Julie Gold
Little Drummer Boy -- Christopher Williams
The Holly & The Ivy -- Kate Rusby
Christmas Blues -- Pat Donohue
A Matter Of Light -- Doug Sutherland
You're A Mean One, Mr. Grinch -- Slaid Cleaves
White Coral Bells -- Judy Collins
Whoville -- Stephen Fearing
Koly Jasna Zvizda (When The Bright Star Shone) -- Harmonia
The 1913 Massacre -- Ramblin' Jack Elliot
5000 Angels -- Joe Gunderman
Coventry Carol -- Pete Huttlinger
Christmastime's A Coming -- Tim O'Brien & The Crossing
The Night Before Christmas -- The Cast
The Christmas Song -- Josh White, Jr.

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Ornaments & Icing 2000

Tom Paxton, Leon Redbone, Alison Brown, and others perform traditional and contemporary folk songs and share thoughts about the holidays in this WKSU-producted NPR special. Hosted by Jim Blum.

Ornaments & Icing 1999

Nationally known folk artists perform traditional and contemporary holiday songs and share personal stories about the music they've chosen. Hosted by WKSU's Jim Blum.

Copyright © 2001 WKSU Public Radio, All Rights Reserved.
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