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The Magic of Christmas - Click to view! “An electronic Christmas album?” Many people would ask this question with a look of disbelief and shock on their faces. For most, synthesizers do not immediately bring up thoughts of snowy nights, cozy fires, and holiday cheer. Images of robots and futuristic sci-fi worlds are more common, and, for various and sundry dark reasons, Christmas isn’t usually celebrated in those sci-fi worlds.

The instant you begin to listen to The Magic of Christmas, however, your thinking will change. Suddenly, the synthesizer notes are not robotic movements but rather, falling snowflakes, dancing fairies, and thoughts of love and joy. Don’t believe me? Try listening to “Winter Wonderland” or “Let It Snow” and then tell me the music doesn’t give you visions of snowy havens. “Have Yourself A Merry Christmas” perfectly balances the longing and joy of Christmas, bringing back all those Christmas memories that have the power to make you laugh and cry. And if all else fails, the one original song, “Lollipop Parade (On Christmas Morn’),” will captivate you with its visions of dancing candy. (Just how often do you get to listen to lollipops dancing?)

But the true importance of Christmas—the birth of Christ—isn’t ignored on this trip through snowy lands. The album opener “Angels We Have Heard On High” amply demonstrates Ronnie’s understanding of the synthesizer, creating a glorious musical moment which gives you a glimpse of how those stars felt when the host of heaven began to sing. Similarly, “What Child Is This?” employ sweeping arpeggios that provide a majestically haunting background for the climactic proclamation of Christ’s divinity. Both of these carols are worth the price of the disc on their own.

This disc is not a stand-alone disc, however. Unless you truly love Christmas, you won’t find this disc all that enchanting. You have to see the beauty, not the annoyance, of snowfall; you have to understand the simple attraction of fairy tales; you have to know the true joy of understanding that Christ became man so that He might save His people. The Magic of Christmas is not about glorifying man or showing off Ronnie’s skills: it’s about praising God who not only created a time of year where we can celebrate but also gave us a reason to celebrate. And if you can appreciate those things, then you can enjoy this album, even if you don’t think synthesizers are cool. I guarantee it.
- Jason Ewert
November 2003
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