Blue Water Christmas
Music performance and production by J.Robert
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Discover "Christmas Island"
© Copyright - J. Robert Houghtaling / Mangrove Music (659057484228)
Barefoot on the beach under a Christmas Moon having a tropical holiday cheer with Santa and the elves while listening to all the little reindeer playing seasonal party music; steel pan, tropical guitar, latin percussion, island violin, and royal poinciana shakers.
Genre: Jazz: Smooth Jazz
Release Date: 2003
"Angels" is like a parade of reindeer that decided to take a permanent holiday vacation down on Tiger Tail Beach, Florida. I believe they’ve struck up a perfect march tempo, so go right ahead and join in. They won't mind.
Meanwhile, there's an image emanating from "Merry Gentlemen." It's a picture of someone like a really shady character...complete with sunglasses, wide-brimmed panama hat and trench coat covering his string-thin mistletoe decorated bathing suit. He just stepped up to the poolside tiki bar to catch a Christmas Martini. Don't look back.
"Three Ships" gets a little epic on us...but that’s what I secretly like about it. Perhaps it's the Irish-style fiddle, island steel, or intricate timing, but I can hear all the lyrics without a single word being sung.
In case you were wondering, there's really nothing at all world-fusion about the steel drum/dobro parts in "Christmas Island." They simply sound good together. I especially enjoyed the tag ending which was recorded live at the "Little Bar" in Goodland, Florida with a bunch of swarthy boys in mullet boots, German tourists, and Cuban dishwashers, hanging around and drinking along with the English couple, Derek and Joann, to the chorus of “How’d ja like to spend Christmas on Christmas Island…” Now, that’s world-fusion!
"III Kings" is a dead-ringer instrumental version of Bob Marley, Jimmy Buffett, and St. Nicholas-in-dreds...and the jam part really moves me! But then, you can't catch details like that from listening to the demo…
Bobby Snyder Jr. is the drummer and sometimes son of the world famous sax player Bob Snyder, and boy does he blister this version of "Little Drummer Boy." Once again, you may have to beg, borrow, steal, or buy the full version to hear it all. Or else you may choose to wait a few years and I'll feature it as a free down-load-of-the-month.
The Spanish had a lot of influence on our little peninsula, la Florida, and Christmas wasn't always about romping through the snow in a one-horse open sleigh like our friends from Michigan like to promote, as well "Midnight Clear" proves. Originally, I wanted to name this whole project "Midnight Clear" because of the dynamic way the guys handled this piece. Wait till you hear the energy in the Iberian-sounding violin jam and ending. It stops the clock!
Have you ever heard "Do You Hear What I Hear?" in 5/4? Cool. I go jogging Whitehorse Key with this tune in my head around Christmas time. My publisher thinks it sounds a little like a Quincy Jones version of Michael Jackson's "We Are the World," but obviously she doesn't hear what I hear.
"O Holy Night" was a classic one-take complete with what sounds like the London Philharmonic in the background and Michael Oakland playing accompaniment guitar. Please don't ask me for a live performance of this song because the chords are staggering!
Whereas, "Whadayaknow About Christmas?" asks all the right questions with no multiple-choice options or hints from the peanut gallery. You may have to wing it. Originality counts double on an original song.
"Joy" picks up where "Angels" left off...and you'll recognize all these classic old carols with distinctively new and refreshing cadence and chorus. I promise a Merry Christmas island style from Marco Island, Florida! Bless us one and all.
Music performance and production by J.Robert and Friends at