Point Of Grace
Christmas Music Playlists with Point Of Grace Songs
Grace Before And After Your Christmas Meal
Point of Grace are an all-female contemporary Christian group who started out in Arkansas way back in the early nineties. While their line-up has changed several times in the intervening period Point of Grace's mission to spread the good word has never faltered. And this dedication has seen the release of several Christmas albums as well as near annual winter/Christmas tour where they've showcased their bulging festive catalogue. Point of Grace first exercised their Christmas chops in 1993 when they contributed a reworked version of 'Hark! The Herald Angels Sing' on a compilation of contemporary Christian artists called 'Christmas Carols Of The Young Messiah'. But it would not be until their debut Christmas album 'A Christmas Story' came out in 1999 that we truly got to witness the Point of Grace holiday experience. Recorded in Nashville, Montreal and at the famous Abbey Road Studios in London 'A Christmas Story' the album was given a live context when the girls joined fellow Christian artist Amy Grant on her 1999 Christmas Tour which also featured that another uber Christmas aficionada Michael W. Smith.
‘A Christmas Story’ was characterised by Point of Grace’s adherence to drifting away from the well tested templates of our Christmas standards. So while ‘Angels We Have Heard On High’, ‘O Holy Night’ and ‘Santa Claus Is Coming To Town’ are known by everyone who has spent at least a single Christmas in the environs of a radio the girls see fit to bring them on a merry dance that gives the composition a new life of their own. Of these ‘Santa Claus Is Coming To Town’ is perhaps the most arresting with grand blasts of brass and the girls in ultra-sassy form in a near shriek vocal performance full of festive glee. The medley of ‘Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow/Sleigh Ride’ initially takes on a loungey demeanour before turning into a rollercoaster of vocal interplay.
Point of Grace went off the beaten (snow) track for the turn of the century when in 2000 they released a song called 'When Love Came Down' with a companion Christmas book called 'When Love Came Down at Christmas'. It was a nice touch with the 64-page text resplendent in the story of the nativity and birth of Jesus. Although it would be a number of years before Point of Grace released their sophomore Christmas album they toured with Michael W. Smith in the years 2002, 2003 and 2004 on his Christmastime Tour. The run up to Christmas 2005 was again a busy one for the girls with their inaugural 'Winter Wonderland Tour' showcasing their burgeoning seasonal catalogue. With David Webster appearing at each of the 16 shows and the group bolstered by a myriad of local choirs this was an opportune time to showcase 'Winter Wonderland', a delightful new collection of old and new Christmas standards that was released in the run up to the seasonal celebrations in 2005.
The ‘Winter Wonderland’ collection of 10 holiday songs was for the most part a familiar run down of classics such as 'Frosty The Snowman', 'It's The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year' (which was released as the album's single) and 'Jingle Bells' but there were nods to their peers on their cover of Michael W. Smith's 'All Is Well' with Smith himself joining in on vocals and Amy Grant's 'Breath Of Heaven (Mary's Song)'. At this point in their career Point of Grace was a quartet with each of Heather Payne, Denise Jones, Leigh Cappillino and Shelley Breen adding to the delightful harmonies with the lush orchestration giving the album the sweep and feel of an old time classic. While it may have been less experimental in its approach to rejigging old standards there was still magic in the air and in 'Let There Be Light' they had recorded a brand new Christmas wonder. Such was the success of 'Winter Wonderland' that it won the auspicious Dove award for Christmas Album of the Year in 2005.
Point of Grace's Winter Wonderland Tour was given another outing for Christmas 2006 and 2007 with David Webster replaced as special guest singer by Scott Krippayne. For the 2008 iteration of the Point of Grace Christmas tour it was Ronnie Freeman who took on the mantle of special guest vocalist. 'Tennessee Christmas: A Holiday Collection' was released the very same year and it proved to be a wonderful compilation featuring the best bits from Point of Grace's previous two Christmas albums. By the time winter 2010 rolled around Point of Grace were again planning their Christmas tour to support the release of their newest Christmas album 'Home For The Holidays'. With another roll call of classic Christmas songs and not so well known numbers (10 in total) this was the band’s successful jaunt at consolidating their position as modern Christmas greats. A cursory listen of their Corrs-like ‘White Christmas’ is all you need to acknowledge what a powerhouse they were in the seasonal department, that banjo at the end will get you every time! With the band now stripped down to a trio they appeared more focused while not losing any of the velvet plushness in their syncing vocals. ‘Candy Cane Lane’ has a barbershop quartet quality with plenty of country influences to go with the dance around the fire twinkling. With their ‘Joy To The World’ turning the famous carol into an uptempo pop song this was a group determined to give us a fresh new perspective on Christmas music.Author: Kevin