This song is my all-time favorite secular Christmas song. It’s brilliant! I recall listening to it on one of my mother’s many Christmas LPs and cassettes. I used to rewind it to listen again and again while baking cookies. I’ve never been on a sleigh ride (It’s on the bucket list.), but believe that the music captures the excitement and rush of such a ride. And until I get on my sleigh, it will have to do.
I also love orchestra pieces for a very personal reason. In junior high and high school, I played the clarinet, alto sax, and tenor sax. My big brother played the trombone. He was in jazz band with some very talented musicians. I never took it seriously enough to be that good, but marched in the fall and played in the concert band. When I hear an orchestration, I see the faces of my high school band mates and am reminded of the good times at football games, concerts, fundraisers, and our epic trip to Paris my freshman year. Now that I am a teacher, I have students whose faces appear, ones who are off becoming doctors, lawyers, officers, teachers, nurses, and so much more. Orchestrations for me embody the best of my past and the promise of the future.
And is there any more amazing conductor/composer that John Williams? He’s responsible for conducting the Boston Pops for years and for a long list of iconic movie scores, like ET, Jaws, Indian Jones, Star Wars, and Jurassic Park. And there are so many more! His most recent score is Lincoln, which I hope to see soon.
Combine one amazing song, my intense love of orchestrations, and the brilliant John Williams and you find sheer Christmas music perfection. Enjoy!