Today on Radio Riel we feature the work of Chip Davis’s American Gramaphone label, and other artists in the field of contemporary instrumental music, with a seasonal flavour. In particular, we’re focusing on the music of Mannheim Steamroller, founded by
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From the Library: Mannheim Steamroller & American Gramaphone

in Daily Programme

by Elrik Merlin on Monday, 14 December, 2009

Today on Radio Riel we feature the work of Chip Davis’s American Gramaphone label, and other artists in the field of contemporary instrumental music, with a seasonal flavour.

In particular, we’re focusing on the music of Mannheim Steamroller, founded by Davis and Jason Berkey in 1974. The group has become known particularly for its contemporary re-workings of Christmas classics, and we’ll be including many of those today alongside other American Gramaphone artists.

Davis founded Mannheim Steamroller in 1974 to showcase his interest in fusing modern popular and classical techniques. The first Fresh Aire album was released shortly after. It was turned down by major record labels, so Davis founded American Gramaphone to release it; this has been the label for all subsequent Mannheim Steamroller releases. A total of eight Fresh Aire albums were released, concluding with Fresh Aire 8 in 2000. Fresh Aire 7 was awarded the Grammy Award for Best New Age Recording in 1990.

Mannheim Steamroller released Mannheim Steamroller Christmas in 1984, and the group’s subsequent Christmas music albums have sold tens of millions of copies and become among the most popular recordings in that genre.” (Wikipedia)

To complete today’s picture, we’ll be including music from other contemporary instrumental artists, often with a jazz flavour, such as David Benoit and Sandy Owen, including the latter’s atmospheric solo piano settings of well-known Christmas songs.

In addition, at 1pm and 7pm SLT, we will be broadcasting the second in our “Night Tales” series of ghost stories for Christmas, with E F Benson’s The Bus Conductor, read by Elrik Merlin.

Today’s programme is presented by Elrik Merlin and produced by Radio Riel in conjunction with the Alexandrian Free Library Consortium of Second Life. You can listen to the programme now at http://main.radioriel.org in-world, or simply click here: http://moto.slserver.com:8020/listen.pls

For more information on the Alexandrian Free Library, current exhibits and the work of Consortium members in general, please visit the Alexandrian Free Library website, or one of their branches in-world.

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