Largely piano driven,Festival of the Heartshowcases John Boswell's delicately warm tones on an hour's worth of seasonal hymns and carols. All but the title cut and the album's closer, "Eastern Star" (both composed by Boswell), are traditionals and classics, … see full wiki
John Boswell's "Festival of the Heart" is one of the best Christmas albums I've ever heard. Primarily a piano album, Boswell adds synth and bells, and is joined on some of the tracks by guitar, percussion, English horn, and flutes. Boswell keeps his treatments of the carols fairly traditional and dignified, but somehow breathes fresh life into all of these songs, making them new again. As a piano teacher, the onslaught of Christmas music everywhere I go, plus listening to carols in all states of wonder and disarray all of my working days for about eight weeks a year have dramatically reduced my enjoyment of holiday music. So, it is a joy to find an album that reminds me of why this music means so much to people and why it continues to endure and enthrall no matter what the world is going through during the holiday season. All of the selections on this album are of more serious nature (as opposed to "Up On the Housetop" or "Frosty the Snowman"), and would provide an elegant backdrop to a holiday dinner or get-together or an evening of tree-trimming. Don't just relegate it to background music, though. This album needs to be savored again and again, allowing it to bring Christmas peace and tranquility. The sixteen tracks include two Boswell originals, and all of them are so good that I can't pick a favorite. Guaranteed to delight!