(Originally released in 1998 as “Michigan Christmas Air”, for & by the American Lung Association) Updated and re-released in 2018.
In 1998, much of this memorable collection of music was released to great acclaim – as tens of thousands of copies were sold to benefit the American Lung Association. It is now repackaged to continue its legacy as a holiday favorite for so many listeners, and we’re extremely excited to extend these musical joys to you. Here, we present a clip of just one of the great songs on the CD, “Hurray For Christmas” (April Tini, lead vocalist):
Cover Artwork: Tom Petiet / Concept Studio
(to see ALL of the artwork, use the “Rotate Case” button on kunaki.com’s page)
TRACK LIST || BACKGROUND
“A magnificent effort by DeDoes…(with) outstanding performances by the musicians.”
Robert L. Doerschuk
prominent music reviewer/writer
for Keyboard Magazine, Musician Magazine, and the All-Music Guide
“His (DeDoes’) compositions and arrangements highlight a rare talent.”
University of Michigan Music Professor and prominent musicologist
** To get the complete CD package, and ALL of the tracks of “Christmas Air”, CLICK HERE to go to Kunaki.com and order your cop(ies) !
NOTE: as of 2019, we presently do not make any of the music of “Christmas Air” available through online stores.
- The Christmas Song (Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire) – featuring vocal by Harvey Thompson
- Let It Snow ! Let It Snow ! Let It Snow ! – performed by the Matt Michaels Trio +
- Every Year / I’ll Be Home For Christmas (medley) – performed by Kristen Ryan (vocal) & Steve DeDoes (piano)
- The Air At Christmas – original composition by S.DeDoes (based upon the song “Michigan Christmas Air”).
Performed by the Western Brass Quintet
- Hurray For Christmas – featuring vocal by April Tini
- The Bells of Modern Times (Carol of the Bells) – original composition by S.DeDoes featuring Joe LoDuca (guitar)
- Christmas Time Is Here – featuring Mattie DeDoes (alto sax, heard here as a high school-aged soloist)
- Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silent – performed by the Western Brass Quartet
- Winter Wonderland – performed by the Matt Michaels Trio +
- Go Tell It On The Mountain – performed by Ange Smith (vocal) & Don Mayberry (bass)
- Michigan Christmas Air (anthem & title track from the 1998 CD, original song by S.DeDoes) – see performers listed below
- We Wish You A Merry Christmas – performed by the Western Brass Quartet
additional credits for contributing artists:
David Taylor (drums) provides an incredible range of world-class drumming & percussion throughout this album – on tracks 1, 2, 5, 6, 9, and 11.
- On track 1, Chris Collins (tenor sax) is a featured soloist; the quartet sees Taylor joined by DeDoes (piano) & Chuck Hall (bass).
- The Matt Michaels Trio+ (tracks 2 & 9) features Matt on piano with Paul Keller (bass), Cary Kocher (vibes) and David Taylor (drums). Pete Kahn (alto sax) joins the fun on (9).
- Track 5 includes a terrific featured solo by Jake Reichbart (guitar), and includes spot-on backup vocals David & Sue Fassini of the Bricktown Quartet, along with Kristen Ryan. Must also mention Rachel Slone leading the “hello’s” !
All piano & keyboards are performed by Steve DeDoes, except where I yield the piano to the great & beloved Matt Michaels (see dedication below) on tracks 2 & 9.
“Michigan Christmas Air” presents lead vocals from: Jeffry Moore, Odelia Dunlap, Ange Smith, Harvey Thompson, April Tini, Susie Taylor, Steve DeDoes, and Kristen Ryan; joined by the Northwest Community Gospel Choir of Flint, Michigan. Featured instrumentalists: Pete Kahn (alto sax), Jake Reichbart (guitar), David Taylor (drums), Steve DeDoes (piano/organ), and the Western Brass Quintet.
The Western Brass Quintet (1998 lineup): Stephen Jones, Scott Thornburg (trumpets); Johnny Pherigo (french horn); Ava Ordman (trombone); and Robert Whaley (tuba). Scott Thornburg also plays flugelhorn leads on track 8.
- “Every Year (music & lyrics),” “The Air At Christmas,” “The Bells of Modern Times,” and “Michigan Christmas Air” (music & lyrics) composed by Steve DeDoes, Full Score & 7 Music (BMI).
- “The Christmas Song” (track 1) – Robert Wells (music), Mel Torme (lyrics). Edwin H. Morris & Co./MPL Communications (ASCAP)
- “Let It Snow !” (track 2) – Jule Styne (music), Sammy Cahn (lyrics). Cahn Music Co./WB Music/Producers Music Pub.Co./Chappell & Co. (ASCAP)
- “I’ll Be Home For Christmas” (track 3) – Buck Ram, Kim Gannon, and Walter Kent. Gannon & Kent Music Co./Producers Music Co. (ASCAP)
- “Hurray For Christmas” (track 5) – music & lyrics by Don Sebesky; additional lyrics by Steve DeDoes. Cymbaline Music (ASCAP)
- “Christmas Time Is Here” (track 6) – Vince Guaraldi (music), Lee Mendelson (lyrics). Fantasy, Inc. (ASCAP).
- “Let All Mortal Flesh Be Silent (track 7), “Go Tell It On The Mountain” (track 10), and “We Wish You A Merry Christmas” are traditional carols.
Track 7 (“Let All Mortal Flesh Be Silent”) arranged by Richard Price; Track 9 (“Winter Wonderland”) arranged by the Matt Michaels Trio+ & S.DeDoes; Track 10 (“Go Tell It On The Mountain”) arranged by Ange Smith, Don Mayberry, & S.DeDoes; Track 12 (“We Wish You A Merry Christmas”) arranged by Stephen Jones.
All other arrangements by Steve DeDoes. All tracks produced by S.DeDoes.
Locations: Brookwood Studio, Ann Arbor, MI (tracks 1, 2, 3, 5, 9); Steve DeDoes Music Productions, Ann Arbor (tracks 5, 6, 7); Studio A, Dearborn, MI (tracks 5, 6, 10); LoDuca Music, Bloomfield Hills, MI (track 6); Solid Sound, Ann Arbor (track 7); Dalton Recital Hall, Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, MI (tracks 4, 8, 12).
for the song, “Michigan Christmas Air,” some recording took place at ALL of the above locations, with recording work by all of the named engineers (and more !). Choir recorded at F.A.Bower Theatre in Flint, MI. Final 24-track mix engineered at Studio A by Todd Fairall.
Recording/Mix Engineers: David Lau (tracks 1-4, 8, 9, 12); Todd Fairall (tracks 5, 10); Steve Capp (track 5); Eric Wojahn (track 7).
Project Mastering: David Lau and the Brookwood Studio
All CD Artwork: Tom Petiet / Concept Studio. See complete package design here
There are many stories to tell about “Christmas Air” – regarding the original project, about the outstanding artists (including some who, sadly, have passed in recent years) who took part, and about the legacy of this great collection of music and what it has meant over the years.
This re-release is dedicated to the late Matt Michaels. A pianist of the highest order, Matt is heard here on tracks 2 & 9 – as I yielded the keys to the artistry of my longtime mentor. Matt’s musical influence is evident throughout this album.
“This project provided me with a rare opportunity…to work with my peers at the highest level of production, performance, and achievement. And I am very proud be a part of Steve’s wonderful musical triumph.”
Detroit Music Legend, professor emeritus at Wayne State University (longtime director of Jazz Studies Program)
We acknowledge all of the contributions to this recording, which has proven itself as one of the finest collections of holiday music that exists. The voices, instrumentalists, ensembles, and studio experts that I could tap for this project joined to make an unforgettable sound.
And, we’re aware that – along with the aforementioned Matt Michaels – that some of our other musical friends are no longer with us. We remember, each and every year with fondness, the stalwart Detroit bassist Don Mayberry (track 10), and the fine Flint vocalist Jeffry Moore (“Michigan Christmas Air”).