The Heart of Christmas

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Jon O'Brien
After dipping his toes into festive waters with the bonus-disc re-release of 2008's Something to Say, contemporary Christian vocalist Matthew West goes the whole hog with his ninth studio effort, The Heart of Christmas. Two of the latter's tracks also appear here, the driving, midtempo pop
ock collaboration with Amy Grant, "Give This Christmas Away," and the rousing ballad "Christmas Makes Me Cry," a duet with former American Idol finalist Mandisa which indeed sounds like it could have been a talent show winner's single. But the other nine offerings are all brand-new recordings, ranging from hymns ("Silent Night") to yuletide standards ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Jon O'Brien
After dipping his toes into festive waters with the bonus-disc re-release of 2008's Something to Say, contemporary Christian vocalist Matthew West goes the whole hog with his ninth studio effort, The Heart of Christmas. Two of the latter's tracks also appear here, the driving, midtempo pop
ock collaboration with Amy Grant, "Give This Christmas Away," and the rousing ballad "Christmas Makes Me Cry," a duet with former American Idol finalist Mandisa which indeed sounds like it could have been a talent show winner's single. But the other nine offerings are all brand-new recordings, ranging from hymns ("Silent Night") to yuletide standards ("Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas") to original compositions ("Day After Christmas"). West acquits himself well on the more familiar numbers, with his warm, inviting vocals tailor-made for listening to in front of an open fire on a cold winter's day, and while the orchestral rendition of "O Holy Night" and the piano-led "Silent Night" don't provide anything you haven't heard before, a swing jazz version of "Jingle Bells" and a handclapping, gospel-tinged reworking of "O Come All Ye Faithful" show he's not averse to mixing things up a little every now and again. But it's on his own self-penned material where his Christmas spirit really shines through. "Leaving Heaven" harks back to his Nashville roots with its gentle, fingerpicking acoustics, slide guitar riffs, and guest vocals from Vince Gill; the jaunty toe-tapping opener "Come on Christmas," and the string-soaked title track are convincing forays into Michael Bublé-esque easy listening territory, while even the sternest of souls would find it difficult not to be moved by the emotive country ballad "One Last Christmas," a life-affirming true tale of a town who celebrated Christmas early in aid of a terminally ill young boy. One of the first records out of the block from 2011's inevitable slew of seasonal releases, The Heart of Christmas doesn't exactly break any new ground, but it's a heart-warming affair which justifies West's reputation as one of the most dependable voices in contemporary Christian pop.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 10/4/2011
  • Label: Sparrow
  • EAN: 5099909576520
  • Catalog Number: 95765

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Matthew West Primary Artist
Eric Darken Percussion
David Angell Strings
John Catchings Strings
David Davidson Strings
Paul Franklin Steel Guitar
Vince Gill Background Vocals
Anthony LaMarchina Strings
Blair Masters Keyboards
Jerry McPherson Electric Guitar
Dan Needham Drums
Tim Lauer Keyboards
F. Reid Shippen Percussion
Monisa Angell Strings
Jerard Woods Background Vocals
Pete Kipley Guitar
Jovaun Woods Background Vocals
Will Sayles Drums
Tony Lucido Bass
Michelle Swift Background Vocals
Ben Shive Piano
Jeff Pardo Piano, Background Vocals
Court Clement Guitar, Background Vocals
Craig Nelson Strings
Pam Sixfin Strings
Tom Bucovak Electric Guitar
Joel West Background Vocals
Rich Brinsfield Upright Bass
David Childress Background Vocals
Joey Lever Background Vocals
Dustin Rorher Drums
Dave Childress Bass
Mary Kay Vanosdale Strings
Laura Licatta Background Vocals
Technical Credits
Brown Bannister Producer, Engineer
Steve Bishir Engineer
Greg Calbi Mastering
David Davidson String Arrangements
Hugh Martin Composer
Chance Scoggins Vocal Producer
Ralph Blane Composer
Jan Cook Art Direction
Matt Stanfield Programming
Pete Kipley Programming, Producer, Engineer
Bobby Shin Engineer
Traditional Composer
Warren David Digital Editing
Andy Hunt Engineer
Jeff Pardo Director
Matthew West Arranger, Composer
Aaron Sternke Digital Editing
Ashley Gorley Composer
Sam Mizell Composer, Programming, String Arrangements
Joel West Management
Billy Whittington Digital Editing
Dustin Wise Digital Editing
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 3 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(3)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

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2 Star

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1 Star

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Posted January 25, 2013

    Great Christmas CD

    Of all the newer style Christmas music on the market, this CD is by far the best. Matthew West has a great voice. I would highly recommend this CD as a permanent part of any Christmas music collection.

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  • Posted December 12, 2011

    Highly Recommended

    Enjoy Christmas music

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews