Christmas With A Capitol C

December 17, 2017




‘It’s interesting how fate brings people together, and how it can gently,
almost imperceptibly, help us make our dreams come true.
I had always wanted to write Christmas music. The holiday season has
produced some of the best tunes ever written, and it inspired the great
John Williams to write the absolutely magical melody for the Christmas
classic, “Somewhere in My Memory.”
Had it not been for another composer having to drop out of scoring the
internet series, The Interior, I may have never met director Helmut Schleppi.
Helmut trusts the people he works with. Soft-spoken, always encouraging,
with a twinkle in his eye. That was the creative environment that made my
music for Christmas with a Capital C possible. But as with every project,
there were challenges … good ones!
While thinking about the story my music needed to tell, I had an idea for a main
theme. Excitedly, I worked on a demo, asking my friend, composer Ciarán Hope,
to record a clarinet part for me (track #17 on this album). Helmut wasn’t a big
fan of the melody. The post-production schedule required that I work on some
other scenes which would not feature the main theme, while at the same time
cracking the thematic code that would be right for this movie. Tick-tock. In the
process, I had an epiphany: My initial theme was too repetitive and too long; the
first four notes get repeated several times, and the third and fourth note have the
same pitch. This story needed something much more distinct. How does one
go about finding that? As a general rule, a melody becomes more distinct the
more different pitches it includes and the more rhythmic variety it has. So, I
created piano sketches of five more themes with the objective to avoid the
repetition of any pitch, as much as possible. Helmut loved one of those
sketches. We had our main theme, and writing the rest of the music happened
fairly quickly. I am so thankful for having gone through that process as it really
improved the score overall.’ This is a well written passage written by the composer I chose to include in the review.

When I was approached by the producer to review the material I thought… another xmas release of xmas songs with hokey arrangements. Was I ever surprised! It was a soundtrack release and it was filled with all sorts of melodies, themes, and styles. “Journey to Trapper Falls,” is a beautiful main theme introduced on the harp and then nicely carried by the piano. The flute is given a small chance in the second track “Rivals.” “My Country” is a twangy piece with loud guitar, harmonica, Jews harp but at the end there is a hint to the return of the main theme. It is a theme to be repeated often.Two choral tracks which were alternate cues and didn’t appear in the film are beautiful works which are definite winners. I somewhat understand the new system, just don’t agree with it. Bland in my book is bad.

Overall I like the new CD. and recommend it as a year long listening experience for you to enjoy. The material is varied enough to hold your interest and that theme is certainly ear catching. Available on the site for $14.95.