Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
Paul Johnson - Christmas Guitarsdotdotdotdot
artworkPaul Johnson's impeccable and very endearing style are well suited to breathing new life into Christmas standards. This is a CD you can just put on and let cycle while company ooh's and ahh's your tree. It's as warm as your fireplace, and straight from Paul's heart. Multiple acoustic guitars play off ech other as only PJ seems able to do. He had help of varying kinds on various trackjs, but at the end of the day, it's Paul's glorious playing that makes the CD so very good.
Picks: We Wish You A Merry Christmas, O Come, All Ye Faithful, God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen, White Christmas, Silent Night, Santa Claus Is Coming To Town, Do You Hear What I Hear, It Came Upon A Midnight Clear, Annunciation Medley, Jingle Bells, Nativity Medley, Deck The Halls, The Christmas Song, Jingle Bell Rock, Sleigh Ride, Carol Of The Bells, O, Holy Night, O Come All Ye Faithful Reprise, We Wish You A Merry Xmas Reprise

Track by Track Review


We Wish You A Merry Christmas dotdotdotdotdot
Christmas (Instrumental)

Warm and playful, "We Wish You A Merry Christmas" has a classical feeling and is just lovely. Superb!

O Come, All Ye Faithful dotdotdotdotdot
Christmas (Instrumental)

The peace in Paul's heart swells from this wonderful rendering of "O Come, All Ye Faithful." It's formal, yet very open.

God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen dotdotdotdot
Christmas (Instrumental)

With a sort of folky underbelly, "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen" flows like a backtrack to a fireside scene. Quite lovely.

White Christmas dotdotdotdotdot
Christmas (Instrumental)

"White Christmas" uses a kind of cowboy rhythm behind it that sets it apart from all other versions. You can imagine cowboy Bob sitting fireside on a snowy Christmas on the range with the doggies. Very pretty.

Silent Night dotdotdotdotdot
Christmas (Instrumental)

The lovely interplay between lead and rhythm on "Silent Night" displays Paul's depth of faith. Just a guess, but I'd say that this flows right from his heart!

Santa Claus Is Coming To Town dotdotdotdotdot
Christmas (Instrumental)

The cowboy rhythm backing "Santa Claus Is Coming To Town" gives it a good time feeling that's a real grinner. Simply fun!

Do You Hear What I Hear dotdotdotdot
Christmas (Instrumental)

This is a soft and easy, if somewhat classical delivery of "Do You Hear What I Hear." It's very respectful.

It Came Upon A Midnight Clear dotdotdotdot
Christmas (Instrumental)

"It Came Upon A Midnight Clear" plays softly across the monitors with delicate precision and warmth. Very pretty!

Annunciation Medley dotdotdotdot
Christmas (Instrumental)

"Annunciation Medley" is a celebration on acoustic guitars, with delicate precision and eyes-closed meditation.

Jingle Bells dotdotdotdot
Christmas (Instrumental)

A child's dream of Christmas is captured in "Jingle Bells." It's more mature than the child's dream, yet childlike in its innocence.

Nativity Medley dotdotdot
Christmas (Instrumental)

This is a bluesy medley of Christmas songs, played as if the manger was on Chicago's South side. Very cool.

Deck The Halls dotdotdotdotdot
Christmas (Instrumental)

One of the more joyous of the Christmas sings, "Deck The Halls" is dutifully celebrative and uplifting. The dueling guitars are harmonious and spread the joy across the aural plane.

The Christmas Song dotdotdotdot
Christmas (Instrumental)

A lovely and easy going rendition of "The Christmas Song" flows from the guitars like an after midnight waterfall under the tree. Very smooth.

Jingle Bell Rock dotdotdotdot
Christmas (Instrumental)

Softened some from the Bobby Helms hit, "Jingle Bell Rock" becomes an easy flowing shuffle with a light heart.

Sleigh Ride dotdotdotdotdot
Christmas (Instrumental)

Like a classical duet, the guitars intertwine with joy on this venerable Christmas song. "Sleigh Ride" is an easy rockin' tune with a gentle bundled up feeling.

Carol Of The Bells dotdotdotdotdot
Christmas (Instrumental)

Ultra soft and from the soul, "Carol Of The Bells" is like crystal snow viewed from the warmth of the hearth. Very nice.

O, Holy Night dotdotdotdot
Christmas (Instrumental)

Soft and lush, "O, Holy Night" flows gently across the evening with reverent peacefulness.

O Come All Ye Faithful Reprise dotdotdotdot
Christmas (Instrumental)

This reprise of "O Come All Ye Faithful" is a delicate duet between two guitars in an almost classical mode.

We Wish You A Merry Xmas Reprise dotdotdotdotdot
Christmas (Instrumental)

Like a minuet, "We Wish You A Merry Xmas Reprise" floats around the ballroom in delicate circles. Lovely.