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Mark O'Connor's Appalachian Christmas
O'Connor says, "Appalachia is the original melting pot of our country featuring more diverse styles of American music than just about anywhere. This theme makes for what is a trilogy of my "Appalachia" recordings now; 'Appalachia Waltz,' 'Appalachian Journey' and 'An Appalachian Christmas.' My new album features 11 Christmas tracks, as well as several Appalachian-themed songs about a beloved hunting dog, passing a fiddle down through the generations, and offering a new version of "Appalachia Waltz" itself with classical guitarist Sharon Isbin, one of my most well-known pieces. A few of my favorite Christmas centerpieces for the album include Renee Fleming’s soprano embraced by a mountain orchestra and fiddle solo, as well as the jazzy style of Jane Monheit with an all acoustic string band. Growing up in the O'Connor musical household, Christmas time was a wondrous mixture of Christmas carols, fiddling, bluegrass and other traditional American music. And that is the spirit of 'An Appalachian Christmas.'"