On their new Christmas EP, The Kingsmen waste no time in getting to the point. The title track and very first tune on ‘Tis The Reason is direct, with clarion horns punctuating lead singer Chris Bryant’s sympathetic reminder: “‘Tis the season to be frantic / The crazy time of year we panic / Countless greeting cards to send / Christmas parties to attend / But it’s not the time to fret / Over what we may forget / On the list to do, or make or bake or spend / ‘Cause in the end — it’s about Him”
The song rises to a crescendo as Chris Jenkins, Alan Kendall and the group’s patriarch, Ray Reese, join in: “‘Tis the Reason to let our praises ring / ‘Tis the Reason to lift our voice and sing / To open up our hearts — and keep on believin’ / ‘Tis the Reason”
The collection seamlessly weaves together old favorites — the majestic “O Holy Night” and the warmly nostalgic “The Christmas Song” — and new songs that range from the upbeat “Here We Come A Caroling” to the thoughtful meditation on the infinite mercy of “The God Who Gives Himself Away” and the closing reminder of “There Is Peace,” with its timely message: “When we love and hold on to each other / When we give just like it’s still December / Every day the Christmas season stays with you and me / There is joy, there is hope, there is peace”
From start to finish, ‘Tis The Reason affirms that the spirit that has animated The Kingsmen’s legendary career is as strong as ever. “The last time the Kingsmen released a Christmas album was in 1994,” notes Alan Kendall. “With the tremendous response from the Christmas single “Tell It On the Mountain” in 2020, our fans and friends made it clear to us that they were way past ready for another collection of seasonal songs celebrating the birth of Jesus. Our producer Jeff Collins and the folks at Crossroads Music agreed with us, and we began preparing it over a year ago.
“We’re excited about four brand new songs that not only sing us into our favorite time of year, but celebrate the very reason for the season. And with timeless classics like ‘O Holy Night’ and ‘The Christmas Song’ added to the mix, we feel like we have something for everybody. We are certainly proud and honored to present this recording, and we pray that it will be a cherished and spirit-filled part of everyone’s holiday listening for many years to come.”
Listen to ‘Tis The Reason HERE.
“I love Christmastime,” says Darren Lore. “It’s truly the most wonderful time of the year.” That love for the holiday — and for the Savior whose birth is celebrated — made the creation of a Christmas collection a natural choice for The Lore Family and the result is sure to find its place among the most treasured of holiday albums.
The cheery opener, “Sing A Happy Song At Christmas,” with its clever musical references to seasonal classics, sets the pace for the eight-song set, as Fayth Lore Whisnant leads the family through an expansive, sophisticated arrangement. Yet, as the following take on the venerable “Beautiful Star of Bethlehem” shows, The Lore Family keeps the miracle of Christ’s birth at the center of its celebration, and indeed, the next song after that, “Make Room,” gets right to the heart of their message, as Sandy Lore offers its heartfelt chorus: “Make room this Christmas / Make room for Jesus / Make room in your heart for His love / There’s already a place in His heart for you / Make room this Christmas…for Jesus”
As the Roger Talley-produced collection moves on, through the majestic “Let The Faithful Come,” the bright swing of “Talkin’ ‘Bout Jesus,” which features spirited leads from Fayth and brother Samuel Lore, the moving narration by Sandy of the Christmas miracle set to a medley of traditional carols and more, the depth of The Lore Family’s devotion — and talent — makes an unforgettable impression.
“There seems to be a renewal of relationships around the holidays,” notes Darren. “Families and friends take time to get together. Society seems to be more considerate, generous and kind. Laughter can be heard. Love can be felt. And, if you listen, you’ll always hear music. People love to sing loud when they celebrate. And since Christmas is all about the birth of Jesus, we have a reason to lift our voices and sing!
“Our family feels very honored to share The Lore Family Christmas with you — our first Christmas album. We thoughtfully and prayerfully selected the songs for this album. Our family, the writers, the musicians, our producer and staff at Crossroads worked hard to present this collection. We pray that you will fall in love with each song. We hope that our music becomes a part of your Christmas celebration. Learn every line to each song and join us as we sing.
“Most of all, we encourage you to ‘Make Room’ for Jesus in your heart. Keep Christ the center of it all. Until you know Jesus personally, you’ll never fully understand the meaning of this season. For those who know Him, share His love, peace and joy with the world. ‘His Name Is Jesus!’ My family wishes you a very, Merry Christmas.”
Listen to Christmas HERE.