CD Review: “We Need a Little Christmas” (Triumphant Quartet)

I recently had the blessing of hearing Triumphant Quartet’s latest Christmas CD. It starts with “Jesus, What a Wonderful Child” which the Talley Trio included on their project a while back. Two songs I hadn’t heard before were “Hope Has Hands” and “Mary’s Christmas,” the latter of which was sung by Clayton Inman who did a terrific job.

When I first started listening to “Christmas Shoes,” I really wasn’t sure how a bass singer would do but Eric Bennett did a great solo.

They repeated the Cathedrals’ acapella arrangement of “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen” and then David Sutton sang a really neat song called “Jesus is Lord.”

As I listened to Jeff Stice do a piano solo of “O Holy Night,” I thought, “I’d love to see him do that in concert.” I love the song anyway but Jeff is one talented musician!

Probably the neatest song on the project is the title song, “We Need a Little Christmas,” which Legacy Five also recorded earlier this year. However, on Triumphant’s version the families of the group members join in and sing. It was introduced by Paul Heil. Upbeat and fun, this song is definitely a winner!

Closing the project is a “Medley of Fun” which includes “Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town,” “Jingle Bell Rock,” “Feliz Navidad,” “Walking in a Winter Wonderland,” “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree,” “Jingle Bells,” and “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” (another piano solo).

One thing that added to the project was, between each song, Jeff would play a short piano solo of a carol. Then it would go into the next song. I’ve never heard a group do that before but it gave it more of a Christmasy feel.

If you like Triumphant Quartet, you will like this project!

~Sony Elise


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8 Letters to the Editor

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  1. The Oak Ridge Boys did something similar with carol intros on their 1986 recording titled _Christmas Again_

    _http://www.artistdirect.com/nad/store/artist/album/0,,140365,00.html

    It wasn’t instrumental, though. Before each original song on the first half of album, they sang a cappella. For example, “The Voices Of Rejoicing Love” is introduced with an a cappella verse of “Joy To The World.”

    This was when albums came out on LPs and cassettes, so they did this type of intro on the first five cuts, which were sacred Christmas songs.

    The “back” side of the album was new, secular Christmas songs. Track 6, “When You Give It Away” made the transition…not necessarily a gospel Christmas song, but not focusing on Santa and the secular side of Christmas either.

    Looking back, the most popular song they introduced to the world on that album was “There’s a New Kid In Town.”

  2. The link in my last post didn’t work…trying again… [EDIT, 6/18/12: Broken link removed.]

  3. Speaking of the Oaks, the song “Jesus Is Born Today” was originally done by the Boys in 1982 on their now-classic “Christmas” album, the same one that introduced “Thank God For Kids.”

  4. I really enjoy this album and listened to it a lot during the Christmas season. I’m glad you enjoyed it, too, Sony!

  5. Jeff did the same thing between songs on Perfect Heart’s Christmas CD when he was with them.

  6. At NQC a few years ago I had the opportunity to hear “Hope has Hands” and the story behind it during a Songwriters Showcase

    The Hoppers were preparing a Christmas project and at the previous NQC had asked Phil Cross if he had a Christmas song they could include as they needed one more. He said he didn’t, and further was busy at the time writing songs for his own group. But as they parted Cross said he prayed and asked God to give him a song so the Hopper’s need would be met. The lyrics and melody came to him within minutes.

    Connie Hopper then sang this marvelous song in her beautiful alto voice (which isn’t featured near enough by the group, in my opinion) and literally brought the hundreds in attendance to tears.

    To my mind this is probably the finest Christmas song ever written. I haven’t heard Triumphant’s version, but I would encourage anyone to find the Hoppers Christmas album and listen to Connie sing it.

  7. I bet Connie does do a great job on “Hope Has Hands.” I’d never heard the song before but I will have to look for the Hoppers’ version.

    Thank you to each of you who shared their thoughts concerning this CD or various songs on this project.

  8. I am looking for the lyrics and score to “Mary’s Christmas” by Clayton Inman and “Hope has Hands” by Connie Hopper. Where do I search for this, as well as, see if it is the right version I need?