Apparently the Trans-Siberian Orchestra has been around since 1996, but I just stumbled across them the other day and I have to admit that I’m already a fan.
I happened upon them because I’ve actually started to listen to commercial radio again, at least until after Christmas. A local radio station, WNIC 100.3 to be exact, has decided that they are going to be playing nothing by Christmas music until after the Holidays are done. I’m not certain when they started, but I think this is the first year they’ve tried this. Now I’m a big fan of the holidays and have been known to break out my Christmas CDs with the first serious drops in temperature in September so this move on WNIC’s part drew me in like flies to honey. It was on this station a day or so ago that I happened upon a rendition of Carol of the Bells, my all-time favorite Christmas song, by the TSO and I was just amazed at the intensity they put into the song.
A quick search in WinMX for the MP3 turned up a number of Christmas songs by the group and a quick Google search turned up their official website. So far they’ve done two Christmas albums. The first is called Christmas Eve & Other Stories and the second is called The Christmas Attic. They also have a video called The Ghosts of Christmas Eve available on either VHS or DVD and which I just happened to catch on the local PBS channel this evening before sitting down to blog.
These guys are amazing in that they’ve taken a lot of old Christmas tunes along with some original compositions and turned them into a rock opera featuring the singing talents of a wide-range of performers from Jewel to Michael Crawford. Being an atheist I tend to lean more toward the secular aspects of Christmas and I tend to prefer the non-religious variety of Christmas music, but I have to give credit to TSO for taking songs I normally don’t care for and giving them a fresh new twist that made them very enjoyable. If you haven’t checked these guys out yet then you should do so, especially if you enjoy the Holiday season as much as I do.