Hawkins, Fiona Joy: Christmas Joy
Fiona Joy Hawkins has been referred to as the 'Australian Enya'. Hawkins is an Australian composer, vocalist, and pianist. She was born in Cessnock, New South Wales, to a creative family, and trained as a classical pianist. She is currently a 2013 Independent Music Awards Finalist for Best New Age Album and Best LIVE Performance.
Christmas may be the perfect time to truly enjoy and immerse your senses in Fiona Joy Hawkins beautiful voice and soft music. And with this is the album you can do it perfectly. From the solemn, careful and wintery opener "Walking in the Air", through to the soft goodbye of "Away in a Manger" Hawkins delivers Christmas her way. And you will enjoy sharing it with her.
"Walking in the Air" is a poem written by William Blake which is delivered with care and sincerity in Gaelic lyric by Heather Rankin, as Fiona plays piano with soft and slow cadence. Cello, double bass and violin join in to create a melancholy soundscape full of winter's deep reflective tone.
"Still, Still, Still (While Shepherds Watch)" is an over 5 minute piano solo with vocals from Hawkins filled with winter's calm but cheerful melody.
"Silent Night ( Down the Aisle)" is the classic melody set to Hawkins soft and warm piano technique.
"Jingle Bells" opens with snow falling piano keys before the familiar melody begins with Hawkins providing inspired rhythm. Since she's from Australia she brought along the didgeridoo to add flavor to the mix. It is an inspired addition to the sound.
"Gliding on a Sleigh" is a soft soprano sax lead ride complete with piano from Hawkins. Cello, double bass and violin only add more magic to the sound of this fun ride through a winter forest scape.
With a title like "Christmas Wedding", could anything be more perfect? Well, Hawkins piano and the soft violin, along with Heather Rankin's vocals truly makes this one of the best tracks on the album.
"O Come, O Come Emmanuel" is the classic theme set to Hawkins piano and arrangement. The serious cello and violin accompaniment furnishes the power for this, one of the most well-known Christmas songs.
"Flight of the Snowbird" is a perfect name for this over four minute piano flight full of emotional violin and Hawkins vocals.
"The Holly and the Ivy" uses the classical theme set to Hawkins piano arrangement. The violin and cello add solemn power to this magical song.
"Christmas Joy" is a boundless piano adventure which fills the room with plenty of uplifting energy and…well…joy. Hawkins vocal interplay and the soft didgeridoo only add magic to the soundscape.
"Away in a Manger" is Hawkins unique arrangement of the classic set to soft piano, cello and violin.
Christmas Joy sets up a tranquil setting from which Hawkins delivers her inspired piano interpretations of some of her favorite songs of the season. She adds soft didgeridoo and Australian flavors to further make this seasonal treasure her own signature statement. Christmas Joy is the perfect album to listen to while putting up ornaments, sipping hot apple cider, or sitting by the fire taking in the solitude and magnificence of this hallowed season. Winter is a time to relax and appreciate all that has been accomplished during the year. Christmas Joy is the perfect remedy for those who want some new music to add to their holiday tradition. This album helps you to relax and think calmly and carefully so you can appreciate and celebrate the year which is about to pass and contemplate how to make the next year even better.
1. Walking in the Air – (Written by Howard Blake)
2. Still, Still, Still (While Shepherds Watch)
3. Silent Night ( Down the Aisle)
4. Jingle Bells
5. Gliding on a Sleigh
6. Christmas Wedding
7. O Come, O Come Emmanuel
8. Flight of the Snowbird
9. The Holly and the Ivy
10. Christmas Joy
11. Away in a Manger
Added: December 11th 2013
Reviewer: Mark Johnson
Related Link: fionajoyhawkins.com.au/
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