Song Premiere: "I Believe In Father Christmas" by Chris Stringer

Hey guys!

Christmas is approaching us quickly.

And I feel like you might have one of the three following reactions to it:
1) you  l o v e  Christmas and are already counting down the days
2) you're panicking because you haven't gotten all the presents yet
3) you don't care because you don't celebrate it

Whichever reaction you're having, a little Christmas music can't hurt.
Even if you don't celebrate this time of the year, you might love the music.
And if you're currently stressing over presents, put the headphones on, love, and relax.

We're pretty thrilled to premiere a Christmas song for you today.

- Song Premiere -
"I Believe In Father Christmas" by Chris Stringer (Greg Lake cover)

Chris Stringer is Alternative Folk artist based in London, UK.

Chris grew up in the seaside city of Swansea, South Wales, before relocating to London in early 2013.
Inspired by the soulfulness of folk music, the grit of rock music and the spirit of 1980s pop, he creates high energy music with real heart.
The addition of band The Rocketeers in 2017 has given Chris’ songs the full sound to match his powerful, soaring vocals and evocative lyrics.

Chris took the time to chat us through the creative process of recording the cover, creating the artwork and why he chose this song:

"I've always been a huge fan of Christmas songs.
When I was younger, we used to listen to the same Christmas album every Christmas morning, so it became a solid part of Christmas for me. Add in the fact that I love to be a nerd about songwriting, and a slight obsession may have been born...
I could have picked any of my favourites, really, but I felt like "I Believe In Father Christmas" had so much scope to make it entirely my own whilst simultaneously being able to stay relatively true to the original, so that's what I intended to do.

I recorded the whole song over the course of about a month, at my home. In the beginning, I had some quite clear ideas about how I wanted certain parts to sound, and certain elements I wanted to include - the electric guitar over the second verse, particularly the part behind the line "I believed in Father Christmas", was in fact the very first part I had in mind.

Learning to play the main chords for the song took far more work - I've always been good at working songs out; it's what I usually do, but for this I took to YouTube and religiously watched an amazing tutorial in order to learn it. The picking style was way different to anything I've played on the guitar, and I had to record the various guitar parts about a fortnight apart because of the mammoth blisters I developed on my thumb and forefinger!
I decided I wanted to stay true to the original, while taking advantage of Lake's prog style to allow myself some space to layer instrumentation and build up to quite a full sound. I emulated the 12-string guitar by layering/duplication my guitar parts and transposing the duplicate by a full octave - sneaky!

For the artwork I considered photography and illustration, until I decided that as I was trying to stay true to the original musically, why not stay true to the original visually, too? I recreated the original artwork as closely as I could, matching the colours, and even trying to find out the original fonts used! And lastly, I added a texture to the artwork to give a dated, vintage feel, as it didn't look quite right "clean".
As a whole, I feel like the project became less of a straightforward cover, and more of a homage to the song and to the late Greg Lake.

To me, Christmas is and pretty much always has been about family.
 I was not raised religious, and so at home Christmas never really had that element to it. Growing up, I'd wake up and spend the morning with my mum and sister, have a glass of Buck's Fizz and put on the Christmas music. We'd do the presents together, and then around midday head to my grandparents' place - it's what my song "Black & White Memories" is about. And to me that is what Christmas is all about: spending time with the people I love and hold dear.

"I Believe In Father Christmas" is available for free download from my Bandcamp page.
However if you would like to donate to Rowan Tree Cancer Care, it would mean a lot to me and my family. Please only do so if you can.

Check out Chris' cover of "I Believe In Father Christmas" right here:

Chris Stringer online: Twitter | Facebook | Bandcamp | YouTube | Instagram

Thank you for your visit!

Credits // Words: Vanessa Jetwash | Words about song & image: Chris Stringer


Post a Comment

Let me know what you think! :)