Blackmore’s Night – Winter Carols (2006)

FrontCover1Winter Carols is the sixth studio album by the group Blackmore’s Night, released in the United Kingdom on October, 2006, and in the United States on November 7, 2006. It is a Christmas themed album. The cover artwork for this album, painted by Karsten Topelmann, is an adaptation of a street in Rothenburg ob der Tauber, Germany, in line with the band’s heavy Renaissance influence. The same street is portrayed in the cover of Blackmore’s Night’s second studio album, Under a Violet Moon. In the cover of “Winter Carols” the street is painted as winter time, whereas Under a Violet Moon’s cover takes place on apparently a summer night. While the selections “Winter (Basse Dance)” is credited to Ritchie Blackmore as composer, it is an adaptation of the second section of Joaquin Rodrigo’s “Fantasía para un gentilhombre,” which Rodrigo composed for classical guitar virtuoso Andres Segovia in 1954.

On December 2006, Winter Carols entered at #7 on USA Billboard New Age Charts.

The album won the New Age Reporter Lifestyle Music Award as the Best Holiday Album.(by wikipedia)

Blackmore´s Night

Ever wonder what Christmas carols sounded like back in time when the finest form of transportation was by horse and wearing armor was a hip fashion statement? Well then, the second release of 2006 by Blackmore’s Night, Winter Carols, may offer some insight. As with their previous efforts, the music on Winter Carols is of the Renaissance-inspired folk variety. And while the majority of the songs are traditional compositions, there are also a few originals, including “Winter (Basse Dance),” which includes some simply gorgeous acoustic guitar doodling by once Fender Strat/Marshall amp abuser Blackmore. Elsewhere, songs such as “Hark the Herald Angels Sing/Come All Ye Faithful” and “We Wish You a Merry Christmas” would sound splendid sung around the campfire — if it were still the 15th century. Unfortunately, a rendition of the Chipmunks’ “The Chipmunk Song (Christmas Don’t Be Late)” is not included. (by Greg Prato)

Blackmore´s Night2
This is one of the most refreshing albums of Christmas music released in many years! There are no Santa Clauses, Rudolphs, or Sleigh Rides here. Candice Night (vocals) and Ritchie Blackmore celebrate Christmas without all the commercialism that saturates most Christmas albums and tastefully interpret carols with a few original compositions added for flavor. Of the originals, “Christmas Eve” and “Winter (Basse Dance) are most notable, although the latter is an adaptation of a classical guitar piece written for Andres Segovia by Joaquin Rodrigo (“Fantasia Para Un Gentilhombre”). Candice Night’s vocals are perfectly suited to the music on the album, and if you want to celebrate the season by listening instead of partying, WINTER CAROLS comes highly recommended! (by Tom Daly)

BookletBackCover

Personnel:
Ritchie Blackmore (guitar, mandola, nyckelharpa, hurdy-gurdy, percussion)
Robert Curiano (Sir Robert of Normandie) (bass)
Candice Night (vocals, shawm, pennywhistle)
Pat Regan (keyboards)
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David Baranowski (Bard David of Larchmont) (keyboards)
Albert Dannemann (bagpipes, background vocals)
Anton Fig (drums)
Sarah Steiding (violin)
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Sisters of the Moon:
Lady Madeline and Lady Nancy (Madeline and Nancy Posner) (harmony vocals)
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background vocals:
Ian Robertson and Jim Manngard

Booklet

Tracklist:
01. Hark the Herald Angels Sing / Come All Ye Faithful (Traditional) 3.50
02. I Saw Three Ships (Traditional) 2.40
03. Winter (Basse Dance) (Blackmore) 3.07
04. Ding Dong Merrily On High (Traditional) 3.16
05. Ma-O-Tzur (Traditional) 2.19
06. Good King Wenceslas (Traditional) 4.44
07. Lord Of The Dance / Simple Gifts (Carter/Brackett) 3.34
08. We Three Kings (Traditional) 4.48
09. Wish You Were Here (Teijo) 5.02
10. Emmanuel (Traditional) 3.32
11. Christmas Eve (Blackmore/Night) 4.20
12. We Wish You A Merry Christmas (Traditional) 1.21

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The cover artwork for this album, painted by Karsten Topelmann, is an adaptation of a street in Rothenburg ob der Tauber, Germany, in line with the band’s heavy Renaissance influence. The same street is portrayed in the cover of Blackmore’s Night’s second studio album, Under a Violet Moon. In the cover of “Winter Carols” the street is painted as winter time, whereas Under a Violet Moon’s cover takes place on apparently a summer night.

And here´s the same scene … in our time:

Rothenburg

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Blackmore´s Night – Shadow Of The Moon (1997)

BlackmoresNightShadowFCShadow of the Moon is the first album by Ritchie Blackmore’s beloved Blackmore’s Night project. The former Deep Purple and Rainbow guitarist and his fiancée, vocalist Candice Night, created a Renaissance-inspired work with elements of folk, new age, and occasional bits of electric guitar. Blackmore even plays bass, mandolin, drum (yes, singular), and tambourine. Night’s voice isn’t powerful, but it’s bright and sweet, making it perfect for this style of music. Other musicians include co-producer Pat Regan on keyboards and the Minstrel Hall Consort; Gerald Flashman on recorder, trumpet, and French horn; Tom Brown on cello; and Lady Green on violin and viola. Most songs are original compositions but some are based on traditional melodies. “Shadow of the Moon” is a marvelous opener; it’s catchy, haunting, and propulsive. Blackmore shreds on acoustic guitar and lets the electric guitar slip into the background for faint power chords. Regal, majestic horns lend an elegance to “The Clock Ticks On,” which addresses the passage of time and a yearning to live in the past. “Play Minstrel Play” features Jethro Tull’s Ian Anderson, one of Blackmore’s favorite musicians. The song moves along pleasantly until about halfway through when it explodes into a frantic, handclaps-led pace with Anderson’s wild flute solo. The warmth of “Ocean Gypsy” makes it the song most easily classified as new age here; Blackmore plays a gentle but swift acoustic guitar melody under Night’s softly yearning vocals. “Writing on the Wall” is quite fast and has a danceable beat, and there’s even a blowout jam at the end. Blackmore’s electric guitar work is the most prominent on “No Second Chance” and “Wish You Were Here.” (by Bret Adams)

BlackmoresNightShadowPersonnel:
Ritchie Blackmore (guitar, bass, mandolin, drums, tambourine)
Tom Brown (cello)
Gerald Flashman (recorder, trumpet, french horn)
Lady Green (viola, violin)
Candice Night (vocals)
Pat Regan (keyboards)
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Ian Anderson (flute on 04.)
Scott Hazell (background vocals on 04.)

BlackmoresNightShadowBookletTracklist:
01. Shadow Of The Moon (Blackmore/Night) 5.06
02. The Clock Ticks On (Blackmore/Night/Traditional) 5.15
03. Be Mine Tonight (Blackmore/Night) 2.51
04. Play Minstrel Play (Blackmore/Night/Traditional) 3.59
“Ocean Gypsy”[3] (Michael Dunford, Betty Thatcher) – 6:06
“Minstrel Hall” (Blackmore) Instrumental – 2:36
“Magical World” (Blackmore/Night/traditional by Pierre Attaingnant) – 4:02
“Writing on the Wall” (Blackmore/Night/traditional by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky) – 4:35
“Renaissance Faire” (Blackmore/Night/traditional by Tielman Susato) – 4:16
“Memmingen” (Blackmore) Instrumental – 1:05
“No Second Chance” (Blackmore/Night) – 5:39
“Mond Tanz” (Blackmore) Instrumental – 3:33 [Mondtanz being German for “Moon Dance”]
“Spirit of the Sea” (Blackmore/Night) – 4:50
“Greensleeves” (traditional) – 3:47
“Wish You Were Here” (Leskelä Teijo; Rednex cover) – 5:02

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