Holiday cheer for all to hear

Island musicians share their favorite holiday music.

Johnny Hoy and Jeremy Berlin spread holiday cheer with "Everyday Will Be Like a Holiday." —Lynn Christoffers

When it comes to holiday jingles, everyone has their favorites. For Island musicians, those favorites range from contemporary classics like “Santa Baby” to celtic folk songs and Buddhist chants. The Times asked some local musicians to tell us what their favorite holiday song is and perform it for us.  

Violinist Mary Wolverton’s favorite song is “The Snowy Path” because, “it is isn’t affiliated with a religion and it honors mother nature, which I think is one of the nicest things about winter and the holiday. I have a nice image of lots of places with snowy paths when I play this tune.” This tune was originally composed by Mark Kelly of the Northern Irish band Altan.

Guitarist Lydia Fischer sang and played “Silent Night” on her guitar. “I think it’s one of the prettier Christmas songs,” Ms. Fischer said. “I look forward to hearing it every year. I think it accurately captures the stillness that is Christmas Eve.”

Singer Roberta Kirn chose a Buddhist blessing that goes “May all beings be well, may all beings be happy. Peace, peace peace.” “The song I chose has become a favorite of mine because it is simple, can be learned quickly, makes everyone feel peaceful and connected and can be sung by people of all backgrounds as a blessing around a holiday table,” Ms. Kirn said.

Johnny Hoy and Jeremy Berlin performed “Everyday Will Be Like a Holiday,” a

William Bell seasonal song which was popularized by the likes of Carole King, Hall & Oates, and Warren Haynes.

Phil daRosa’s favorite holiday song is “Silent Night,” which was originally

composed by Franz Xaver Gruber with lyrics written by Joseph Mohr in Austria in 1818.

Guitarist and singer Merilly Fenner’s favorite holiday song is “Santa Baby,” which was originally recorded by Eartha Kitt and Henri René in 1953. She said the song is sentimental because it was a favorite of a friend who passed away in 2007.