Saturday, December 02, 2006

peach tops apple

The Rockefeller Center Christmas tree was lit this past Wednesday. NBC broadcast the festivities again this year. The telecast was just okay. Hall & Oates served as the "house band" this year, playing as the show resumed after each commercial break. Last year and at least one other year before that, the Brian Setzer Orchestra filled that role. I preferred Setzer's uptempo arrangements to the slower Hall & Oates holiday songs. At least they closed the show with "Jingle Bell Rock." For the actual tree lighting, they showed some celebrities counting down and pushing a button.

I caught the last twenty minutes of another tree lighting ceremony while channel surfing this afternoon. One of our local stations replayed the lighting of the Great Tree at Macy's in Atlanta, which took place on Thanksgiving night. The tree was an understudy after the original snapped in two. The musical performances that I saw were very good, especially LeAnn Rimes. She was accompanied only by an acoustic guitar on "All I Want for Christmas." It's not the same song as Mariah Carey's pop classic "All I Want for Christmas Is You." LeAnn's song is more of a emotional ballad. The sentiment of the song was felt even stronger when the cameras from WSB-TV showed a woman in the audience who had just received a videotaped marriage proposal from her serviceman boyfriend in Iraq. At the end of the show, LeAnn did an excellent job on "O Holy Night," which, when done right, is one of my favorite carols. As LeAnn hit the high note on the words "o night divine," the tree lights came on and some fireworks shot up. It was so much better than the countdown and button push at Rockefeller Center. Unfortunately the genius who posted a video of the moment on YouTube did his own countdown into his camcorder's microphone.

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