Improvisations

Original music by Justin K. Reeve.

  • Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer

    “Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer” was written by Randy Brooks, and originally performed by husband-and-wife duo Elmo and Patsy Trigg Shropshire in 1979. Brooks played the song while he was performing with Elmo and Patsy at the Hyatt Lake Tahoe in December 1978. After the show, Elmo and Patsy requested a cassette of […]

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  • Good King Wenceslas

    The Wenceslas of the song “Good King Wenceslas” wasn’t a king, but actually the Duke of Bohemia who lived in the 10th century. He was reputable as a good, kind, honest, and morally upright man. The carol is about Wenceslas and his page going out giving alms to a poor peasant in bitter cold weather […]

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  • When Christmas Comes to Town

    The 2004 film The Polar Express is based on the 1985 children’s book of the same name by Chris Van Allsburg. It is a story of a young boy who no longer believes in Christmas. A train going to the North Pole appears outside his house, and he boards it at the request of the […]

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  • There’s a Song in the Air

    “There’s a Song in the Air” is both a Christmas carol and Methodist hymn. The lyrics were written by Josiah G. Holland, a very popular poet and novelist in the post-Civil War era and late 19th century. The words paint a picture of the different elements of the Nativity, and recognize Jesus as King. The […]

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  • I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus

    Many fathers dress up in red suits and white beards around Christmastime and bring joy and laughter to their children. But what happens when the children creep down from their bedroom late at night and catch “Santa” off guard? The song “I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus” was written by Tommie Connor in 1952, with […]

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  • God Bless Us, Everyone

    Alan Menken, the acclaimed composer behind many of Disney’s films such as Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, The Little Mermaid, Enchanted and most recently Tangled, wrote this song, “God Bless Us, Everyone” for his 1994 musical based on the Charles Dickens classic A Christmas Carol. Lyrics were done by Lynn Ahrens, and the book by […]

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  • Candlelight Carol

    The music and lyrics to “Candlelight Carol” were written by the English choral composer and conductor John Rutter in 1984, and was first recorded by Rutter’s own group, the Cambridge Singers on their 1987 album Christmas Night. The song has since been recorded by many artists, including Neil Diamond, Joseph McManners, Aled Jones, and several […]

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  • O Holy Night

    Adolphe Charles Adam was an accomplished composer for opera, theatre, and ballet, and a teacher at the Paris Conservatoire. At the age of 27, in 1830, he had completed nearly 30 theatre productions. “Cantique de Noël,” translated to English as “O Holy Night” is one of his most famous works, done in collaboration with Adam’s […]

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  • Pachelbel’s Canon

    “Pachelbel’s Canon,” also known as “Canon in D Major” is by Johann Pachelbel, a German composer from the Baroque era. Like most other works by Pachelbel and other pre-1700 composers, the Canon remained forgotten for centuries and was rediscovered only in the 20th century. Several decades after it was first published in 1919 by Gustav […]

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  • Little Drummer Boy

    “Little Drummer Boy,” originally titled “Carol of the Drum,” is based on a traditional Czech carol. In 1957, Henry Onorati arranged the song for a recording by the Jack Halloran Singers, but it was not released in time for Christmas. The next year, Harry Simeone was looking for material to create a Christmas album, and […]

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  • You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch

    “You’re A Mean One, Mister Grinch” was originally written and composed for the 1966 cartoon special How The Grinch Stole Christmas! The lyrics were written by Theodor “Dr. Seuss” Geisel, the music was composed by Albert Hague, and the song was performed by Thurl Ravenscroft. The song’s lyrics describe the Grinch as being foul, bad-mannered […]

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  • Santa Baby

    “Santa Baby” was written in 1953 by Joan Javits and Philip Springer. The song is a tongue-in-cheek look at a Christmas list sung by a woman who wants the most extravagant gifts like sable, yachts and decorations from Tiffany’s. “Santa Baby” was originally sung and recorded in 1953 by Eartha Kitt. The song was a […]

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  • What Child Is This?

    “What Child Is This?” was written by William Chatterton Dix in 1865. At the age of 29, William was struck with a sudden near-fatal illness and confined to bedrest for several months, during which he went into a deep depression. Yet out of his near-death experience, Dix wrote many hymns, including “What Child Is This?” […]

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  • Mary’s Lullaby

    There are many songs by the name “Mary’s Lullaby,” but this particular one comes from the Children’s Primary songbook, used by the LDS Church. It  is based on an old German folk tune, and is a simple sweet lullaby to the Christ child. The words were written by Jan Underwood Pinborough in 1989, with the […]

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  • Do You Hear What I Hear?

    “Do You Hear What I Hear?” was written in October 1962 with lyrics by Noël Regney and music by Gloria Shayne Baker. It has sold tens of millions of copies and has been covered by hundreds of different artists. Regney was inspired to write the lyrics “Said the night wind to the little lamb, ‘Do […]

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  • Still, Still, Still

    “Still, Still, Still” is an old Austrian tune, first known as the “Salzburg Melody.” The song was written around 1819. Not much more is known about it beyond that, and the original author has since been lost in time. Play Sheet Music Lyrics Still, still, still,One can hear the falling snow.For all is hushed,The world […]

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  • Mary, Did You Know?

    The lyrics to “Mary, Did You Know?” were written by Mark Lowry in 1984, and the music was written by Buddy Greene six years later. The song has been recorded by many diverse artists, but Mark Lowry recorded his own version of the song on three of his albums. The first recording was on his […]

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  • Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire (The Christmas Song)

    “The Christmas Song,” also know as “Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire” was composed by Mel Tormé and Bob Wells in 1944, incidentally during a hot summer. The most popular recording of this song was recorded by Nat King Cole in 1946. The descriptive language of the song is poignant and something anyone can identify […]

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  • Silver Bells

    “It’s practically the only song about Christmas in a big city, with department store lights, window displays, shoppers and all the rest,” said Ray Evans, describing the song he and Jay Livingston wrote in 1950. At the time the two were under contract to Paramount and were assigned to write a Christmas song for The […]

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