Songs for the Snowblind

by Josh Schurr

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Songs for the Snowblind was recorded throughout November 2012 on minimal home recording equipment. I decided at the beginning of October that I needed a new project, having returned from a long summer tour and in need of routine. I’ve loved holiday music as long I can remember, usually impatient for Thanksgiving to arrive each season so I can officially press ‘play’ and swoon over the tunes we all know so well. I knew that it was going to be a minimal record at best. No guests were invited into my small bedroom/studio.

I had written 'Dollar Store' in the vein of those classic Christmas standards. It’s a melancholy song about inventing a love to be with during the holidays when in reality, you don’t have one. I recorded the piano tracks at First Unitarian Church in Philadelphia on a beautiful old Steinway. I had this one original tune that I was really proud of, and began to listen to a bunch of records to get the creative juices flowing (and listen to holiday music early).

I ended up with three traditional Christmas carols, two of which I decided to combine into one song, 'In The Bleak Midwinter/God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen.' This one wasn’t an original choice of mine, though I’d always loved 'Midwinter.' But 'GRYMG' has always been such a flat tune to me, a song I associate with large choirs of old white people. So I changed some things around a bit and made it my own. The other traditional carol, 'It Came Upon A Midnight Clear', is one of my favorites on the record. I recorded it with just an acoustic guitar and a bit of keyboard.

'Snow Angel' is a song off Over the Rhine’s 2007 album Snow Angels. It was written by Linford Detweiler and Karin Bergquist (in other words, Over the Rhine), and fits in beautifully with the old wartime classics like 'I’ll Be Home For Christmas' and 'White Christmas.' I was drawn to it the second I heard it a few years back, and when I began thinking about recording this EP, I knew this song would have to be on it.

Now, if I could have made four or five holiday albums this year, I would have. There are so many incredible holiday songs in the American Songbook that it was difficult to choose only a few. Don’t worry, next year I’ll record a few more. I chose two of the greatest in my opinion, 'Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas' and 'What Are You Doing New Year’s Eve?' These are two songs we’ve probably all grown up with, and they’re wrapped in nostalgia. I hope you love these new little renditions of mine.

I wish you all a happy, healthy, and joyous holiday season. Comfort and joy to all. Much love.

credits

released December 8, 2012

Mixed & Mastered by Jeremy McDaniel
All instruments and vocals by Josh Schurr
'Dollar Store' © Josh Schurr 2012

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Josh Schurr Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Josh Schurr began his performing career in New York, finally settling in Philadelphia. In the summer of 2010 he released his first EP. He recorded his first full-length album after successfully raising the funds to do so through a Kickstarter campaign. 'Halfway' was released in June 2012, followed by a national US tour. Schurr released a holiday EP in December 2012, and is now writing new material ... more

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