Musical memories from 1950's Christmases in Nanty Glo

November 15, 2010

Jon,

Thanks for passing on the very beautiful piece of Christmas music that Mary Lou sent! It is a bit early and I seldom listen to Christmas music before Thanksgiving, but it was really wonderful. Makes you think of what it must be like in the presence of God in heaven when His saints praise Him.

Here are some of my Christmas musical memories that are a bit more on the secular side. I remember them from my childhood and how I would listen, as a small Santa-believing child, to Fred Waring and the Pennsylvanians on the large wooden console radio that was present in all homes in the 1940's. In the evenings, the light would be low and the glow of the "big hot bulb" Christmas tree would set the atmosphere. The smell of my mother baking Christmas kolachi, nut/poppyseed rolls would mix with the smell of the pine tree and make it so special. I would sometime grow glassy eyed and sleepy on the carpet by that radio as the snow softly fell outside. I knew I was safe and loved by my family as I began to doze while envisioning a child's Christmas morning. Somehow that child will live in me even as I grow near my 70th birthday. Each year my heart travels back in time and back to our beloved valley.

I always loved Fred Waring's music and a kid from Pennsylvania, who was in my company in the 4th Division when we were on the Cambodian border, got a tape of Waring's Christmas music from his mom. Talk about something making you homesick as you sat in a candle-lit bunker on Christmas Eve listening to it on a small battery-powered tape recorder!

Enjoy!

Paul Ceria

Fred Waring and the Pennsylvanians perform "'Twas the Night Before Christmas" (Click the play button to start the download.)

Fred Waring and the Pennsylvanians perform "'Ring Those Christmas Bells medley" (Click the play button to download.)

Fred Waring and the Pennsylvanians perform "'Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer" (Click the play button to download.)

Fred Waring and the Pennsylvanians perform "'Jingle Bells Medley" (Click the play button to download.)


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