Los Angeles, CA (September 9, 2019)
Two-time GRAMMY® nominee, guitarist/vocalist Jonathan Butler, will release his new Christmas album, Christmas Together, on Artistry Music/Mack Avenue Music Group October 4, 2019.
Butler’s all-star friends, Sheléa, Dave Koz, Keiko Matsui, Kirk Whalum, Rick Braun and Gerald Albright join Jonathan to reimagine nine classic Christmas favorites, such as “Joy To The World,” We Three Kings,” “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen” and a new original tune, “Love Is,” written by Butler and Sheléa. Jonathan produced Christmas Together himself in the intimate setting of his home studio in Southern California.
“Fans are emotionally attached to their holiday favorites and I hope we did a good job selecting some of those tunes for Christmas Together,” says Jonathan. The idea of collaborations on this album clicked and as he says, “made me up my game as a producer and performer. In a sense, we all brought something uniquely special to the recording experience—an experience I hope brings listeners together to celebrate the spirit of the season.”
Butler brings his own distinctive interpretation to these timeless songs, without jeopardizing the integrity of the tunes. “Mary, Did You Know?” offers a soft backdrop with a string quartet. “Joy To The World” saxophone legend Dave Koz on soprano—the Christmas classic is reinvented with an expansive, breezy arrangement that can be described as “uplifting.” “We Three Kings” features Rick Braun’s muted trumpet and valve trombone, infusing a smoky texture and late-night club feel to this polyrhythmic take on this holiday favorite. “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen” spotlights Keiko Matsui on piano. The magical arrangement almost sounds as if it is dancing on its own. Jonathan and Sheléa co-wrote the sonic sensation “Love Is” for the album and provide the smooth harmonies on the original tune.
This Christmas, you won’t find Jonathan Butler relaxing at home by a fire. He’ll hit the road on the 17-city Dave Koz and Friends Christmas tour to perform songs from his new holiday album. The run of dates kicks off on November 29 in Sarasota, Florida.
Christmas Together Track List:
1. Winter Wonderland
2. Mary, Did You Know? – Sheléa
3. God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen – Keiko Matsui
4. Joy To The World – Dave Koz
5. Deck The Halls – Gerald Albright
6. We Three Kings – Rick Braun
7. Love Is – Sheléa
8. O Come, O Come, Emmanuel
9. Away In A Manger – Dave Koz
10. Jingle Bells – Kirk Whalum