Dominium Christmas

by Dominium Project

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1.
Ode to Joy 05:15
All Thy works with joy surround Thee, Earth and heav’n reflect Thy rays, Stars and angels sing around Thee, Center of unbroken praise. Field and forest, vale and mountain, Flow’ry meadow, flashing sea, Singing bird and flowing fountain Call us to rejoice in Thee.
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Ave Maria 03:47
Ave Maria Gratia plena, Gratia plena Ave dominus Dominus tecum, Dominus tecum Benedicta tu in mulieribus Et benedictus fructus ventris Tui, Jesus Ave Maria, Gratia Plena Sancta Maria, Mater Dei, Mater Dei Sancta Maria Mater Dei, Mater Dei Ora, ora pro nobis peccatoribus Nunc et in hora mortis mortis nostrae Ave Maria, Amen

about

I love Christmas music—let’s begin there. Why then, did I feel the need to change it? The son of a Pentecostal preacher, I grew up with the words and the melodies of church hymns and sacred music punctuating the years of my youth. I loved those melodies. For years I led the church in worship and directed childrens’ choirs every Sunday. I poured my whole heart into the expression of love that I had for music and for God. But as I got older the convictions of my past could not withstand the questions that were burning in my mind. And as I looked for new sources of meaning and inspiration, I traveled far from those more traditional beginnings.

Eventually I came home to the truth that my worldview had changed, and the relevance of my childhood faith was changing as well. This realization was both humbling and exalting. And as I sit here reflecting on the past, I realize that perhaps my purpose in making this album is to bring that early love of sacred music to the present, to take elements of what is familiar and present them in less-familiar contexts so we can experience them anew.

There are times when the world seems to be tilting wildly on its axis and the things that I cling to for comfort aren’t quite as comforting as they once were. I think this is one of those times. When the world moves out of what its “normal” orbit, I go to my piano to try to sort it all out. And so, this is perhaps “A Very COVID Christmas” album. Nothing in here is as you would expect. It doesn’t mean it isn’t beautiful, or lovely, or comforting; it simply means it’s just not what you might know or have experienced before, because given the times we’re living in... what is? I wanted Christmas music to help me find a way of understanding the outside world. I didn’t purposefully set out to write an album that would reflect my state of mind late in 2020, but as a musician I didn’t know how to do anything but.

I hope you enjoy listening as much as I have enjoyed creating.

credits

released October 24, 2020

Arranged, performed, and produced by Philip Stephen Allen.
Cello on track 3, "In Excelsis Deo" performed by Avigail Arad

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Philip Stephen Allen Florida

Philip Stephen Allen plays piano, composes, arranges, produces, and records in Naples, Florida.

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