Fri. Dec 9th, 2022

Bing Crosby’s model of the Irving Berlin-penned tune “White Christmas” is the biggest-selling single in music historical past. Bonus: “White Christmas” is also essentially the most recorded Christmas tune in historical past.

The listing of artists who’ve charted with “White Christmas” reads like an all-star roster.

A sampling: Frank Sinatra. Ernest Tubb. Perry Como. Otis Redding. Andy Williams. Michael Bolton. Garth Brooks. Gwen Stefani. Martina McBride. Bette Midler. Meghan Trainor.

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Oklahoma Music Corridor of Famer Kelly Lang partnered together with her husband, T.G. Sheppard, and a legendary quartet, the Oak Ridge Boys, for a brand new model of “White Christmas” launched this month.

“‘White Christmas’ is a kind of songs that has been executed so many occasions that it’s onerous to do it otherwise,” Sheppard stated, indicating that, in preparation for the team-up, they “went to high school” on a 2011 Michael Buble-Shania Twain model of the tune.

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“They did a duet collectively a few years in the past, and it had the doo-wops in it. The Oaks have been good for that, to do this on the report. After all, we love them. They’re expensive pals, and they’re all the time able to go within the studio. However I assume what introduced it on was we simply wished to do it slightly bit otherwise than it has been executed earlier than. It’s form of harking back to the ‘50s and ‘60s doo-wop sound. Hopefully individuals will get a kick out of the spin that we placed on it.”

Mentioned Lang: “We tease that when one of many Oak Ridge Boys walks in, it’s thrilling. However when all 4 of them stroll in, the earth shakes. They’re simply so charismatic. Their sound is so authentic to themselves. And after they stroll in, they’re simply so beneficiant and type and they’re pals. Lots of people surprise if we’re actually pals within the music trade, and I can absolutely say we certainly are. However they didn’t hesitate once we requested them.”

Generally artists don’t see one another within the studio, stated Lang, however, on this enterprise, they went old-school and recorded the tune collectively.

“We wished to verify it had that feeling of household and residential, and hopefully that may translate to your listeners,” she stated.

The tune, accessible for streaming and downloads, is a one-year-early appetizer for a Sheppard and Lang Christmas album in 2023. Sheppard stated “White Christmas” will likely be on the album with a number of authentic songs, like “Christmas in Mexico,” which they launched final 12 months. Lang stated the album will embody solo tracks from her and Sheppard, plus a number of duets.

Sheppard stated “White Christmas” is certainly one of his favourite Christmas songs. He stated it’s a kind of magic songs, like “Winter Wonderland” and “The Christmas Music (Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fireplace).”

“There are such a lot of, however that is the one,” he stated. “It’s the one that everyone loves essentially the most. The Oaks love this explicit Christmas tune, too, so it was straightforward for them to say ‘sure’ to return sing with us.”

“No person needed to study the lyrics,” Lang stated.

Requested why “White Christmas” hits a candy spot with individuals, Lang stated, “I don’t know. All I do know is that after I heard Michael and Shania do it the primary time, it was like listening to a tune as if I had by no means heard it earlier than, the best way they did a contemporary spin. I beloved her harmonies with him. It changed into my new favourite Christmas tune, and I’d sing it round the home loads.”

Lang instructed to her husband that they need to strive “White Christmas” in the event that they ever tackled one other Christmas mission. The addition of the Oak Ridge Boys for doo-wops was a cherry on high.

“Simply the mix of all three of us collectively, our sounds are all so completely different that it’s an fascinating combine,” Lang stated. “All of us have related fan bases, and I simply hope the followers will embrace this like I did the Michael Buble and Shania Twain model. Perhaps they’ll put it on their favourite playlists as nicely.”

Followers of the Oaks (managed for many years by Tulsa-based impresario Jim Halsey) will instantly acknowledge Richard Sterban’s sonic growth.

“Individuals love to listen to him do this bass line on ‘Elvira,’ so we simply form of spotlighted him on this explicit tune,” Sheppard stated.

Sheppard beforehand collaborated with the Oaks on a Lang-written tune (“Down on My Knees”) for his “Legendary Mates & Nation Duets” album.

“Our longtime pal and brother T.G. Sheppard known as and requested if we’d sing ‘White Christmas’ with him and Kelly Lang, and naturally we agreed to do it,” Joe Bonsall of the Oak Ridge Boys stated. “Not solely can we love them each, however ‘White Christmas’ might be essentially the most basic Christmas tune there’s. Total, it was a good time within the studio, and the ultimate combine got here out simply nice. We’re honored to be part of it.”

Mentioned Sheppard: “It’s a kind of songs that paints an image whenever you hear it. It’s simply Christmas. At all times, you consider snow. Lots of people aren’t in elements of the world the place they get snow, however a few of my fondest Christmases have been with snow on the bottom, so, for me, it’s form of particular and takes me again, ‘White Christmas’ does.”

Close to the tip of a telephone interview, Sheppard instructed a narrative about visiting the North Pole in Alaska. He stated he sat down with Santa Claus and Mrs. Claus at Santa’s workshop and “impulsively I changed into a 5-year-old child.” He stated individuals can take a look at his North Pole go to on his YouTube channel.

“After all, Christmas is my favourite time of the 12 months anyway, however attending to sing with the Oak Ridge Boys makes it a particular Christmas this 12 months.”

Lang not too long ago launched an album (“Previous Soul II”) by which she covers 13 basic songs from a long time previous. Tracks embody “Midnight Practice To Georgia,” “Careless Whisper,” “Each Time You Go Away” and a particular dance model of “Lacking You.”

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