Tag Archives: Mannheim Steamroller

Christmas Eve:Silent Night (Mannheim Steamroller)

Silent Night(Stille Nacht in German, Silens Nox in Latin) is perhaps the most beloved Christmas Carol. It was composed in 1818 by Franz Guber, an organist and schoolmaster, to lyrics by Father Joseph Mohr of the St. Nicholas parish in Oberndorf bei Salzburg, Austria. It was first performed on Christmas Eve in 1818 and since the organ was broken, the only musical accompaniment was the guitar. The popularity of the song spread and the version commonly used today comes from a translation in 1859. John Freeman Young, serving as an Episcopal priest at Trinity Church in New York City, translated and changed the tempo of the song. The original rendition by Gruber was more like a dance tune and sung faster. Young made into a slower lullaby style that is the most common version today. Because it has been so widely translated, it is the one Christmas carol that is known worldwide.

In Austria Silent Night is not heard until Christmas Eve, usually around 9 p.m. Then it is played on the radio once an hour and of course during church services.

There are many renditions of this simple tune from simple solo to full ensemble. Mannheim Steamroller made a version for their first Christmas album in 1984. And it still enthralls many who hear it for the first or perhaps the tenth time.

Countdown to Halloween#6

Monster Mash by Bobby “Boris” Pickett was a 1962 novelty song that was #1 on the Hot 100 chart from October 20-27. It became a popular Halloween tune ever since. For Pickett, it would be his one and only big hit. There are many variations out there but the original still is pretty darn good. First up is his performance from American Bandstand on October 13, 1964. And that very young guy introducing him is Dick Clark and not Jim Carrey!

Now a more modern version done by Mannheim Steamroller in 2006 from their Halloween music collection.

And finally poor Mickey Mouse visits a house where a monster mash is taking place. The footage comes from a 1934 Disney animation Mickey’s Gala Premiere.