Friday, December 31, 2021

Artist Spotlights: Cristina F and Emily Aldridge

As one of my final posts this year I want to spotlight two of the musicians who released new Christmas songs in 2021, and they were two of the best songs this year  I've written about Cristina F and Emily Aldridge and their songs earlier in the blog, but wanted to give each of them another well-deserved shout-out.

Emily and Cristina were both extraordinarily kind and gracious as we connected through their songs this season.  They both found Merry & Bright and contacted me personally with the info about their songs.  And even during the hectic times of the holidays, they both shared the blog posts on their websites and socials, for which I am very grateful.  The best music I find each year comes from hard-working independent musicians like Emily and Cristina.  Please join me in supporting their music!

Cristina F

Cristina F, born and raised in the Bronx, still calls NYC her home.  Inspired by such greats as John Lennon & Paul McCartney, Lady Gaga, and Carole King, Cristina has been writing and performing music for many years.  In addition to "I Won't Be Alone on Christmas Day", which she released this year, Cristina previously released her cover of "Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)".  Available on her Bandcamp site are singles "No Feeling" and "Flowers", her cover of "God Bless the USA", and albums/EPs P/S/ ART Part 1, Greatest Mistake and The EP.  Her back catalog is well worth your time, and I hope you're inclined to support Cristina with a purchase or two.  If you haven't added "I Won't Be Alone on Christmas Day" to your Christmas music collection yet, you should.  It is the catchiest tune that came my way this year, and there were many occasions when I'd realize I had it running through my head.  Such great songwriting!

Cristina was so very gracious as we exchanged communications a few times this holiday season.  She is an independent singer/songwriter, and nothing says this better than one picture in particular on her Instagram feed.  Captioned "When you’re in between singing for kid birthdays and singing for adult weddings", I've never seen a better visual capturing the life of a working musician :-)

One of my wishes for 2022 is another Christmas song from Cristina F!

Cristina F Instagram

Youtube video for "No Feeling" by Cristina F

Emily Aldridge

Emily Aldridge, former Midwesterner now residing in the Pacific Northwest, released "Roaring Fire", one of the absolute finest new songs this season (and one that danged near slipped past Der Bingle - yeesh, I've got to pay more attention).  Emily has a long and eclectic history as a performing musician, self-described as "Guitar-slinging, piano-bashing Emily Aldridge will be writing music until they send her into the deep woods at a ripe old age".  Her solo work includes the album Emily and the Gypsy Fire, a 2014 release featuring 8 original tunes.  Most recently, Em helmed the band Tall Dark Whimsy, the "all-female rock and metal sensation that would soon set Em’s dark tunes spinning into a destiny for ears and years to come."  Earlier,  Em was the frontperson of Sacrifice to Survive, a progressive metal band.  Wow!

In addition to being a singer/songwriter, Emily is a music teacher, a production consultant, offers audition prep services, and serves as a music career coach.  Plus, she is a talented writer and has a great sense of humor, as is evident by perusing her website.  Hit her home page and read the comments about "Roaring Fire" - you'll see what I mean.

Emily's solo work and music with her bands is available on Bandcamp (links are below).  I love a good genre-leaper, and while listening to her work I really enjoyed the jump from the guitar/vocal solitude of "Roaring Fire" to the prog-metal of Sacrifice to Survive.

Another wish for 2022 - more Christmas songs from Emily Aldridge!

"Forgive" video by Emily Aldridge

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