The Cherry Tree Carol

Al Petteway & Amy White

The Cherry Tree Carol
Performed By Al Petteway & Amy White
Album UPC 095182023428
CD Baby Track ID 2023088
Label Maggie's Music
Released 2006-01-01
BPM 103
Rated 0
ISRC USMM70623406
Year 2006
Spotify Plays 0
Writer Al Petteway & Amy White
Pub Co Maggie's Music Administration
Composer Al Petteway & Amy White
ClearanceFacebook Sync License,Traditional Sync,YouTube Sync ServiceEasy Clear
Rights Controlled Master
Rights Easy Clear: Master
Original/Cover/Public Domain original
Country United States - North Carolina


A Holiday Celebration of winter's majesty with Holiday classics, traditional Celtic carols and mountain melodies from the Southern Appalachians performed on acoustic guitars, mandolin, banjo, Celtic harp, piano, fiddle, bass and percussion.


A Holiday celebration of winter’s majesty from Grammy-Award winning guitarist Al Petteway & Amy White. Holiday classics, original, Celtic-inspired & traditional mountain melodies from the Southern Appalachians are performed on Acoustic Guitars, Irish Bouzouki, Banjo, Fretless Bass, Celtic Harp, Mandolin, Piano, Mountain Dulcimer, Fiddle, Whistle, Percussion and vocals. Highlights:While Roving on A Winter's Night , an Appalachian song from Scotsman Robert Burns’ famous poem “My Love is Like a Red, Red Rose.” Tomorrow Will Be My Dancing Day, a carol that reflects the spirit of the ancient Celts; Wondrous Love, an Appalachian hymn;Gabriel’s Message/I Wonder as I Wander , A traditional Basque Carol paired with one of the most famous Appalachian carols collected by folk musicologist in1933;Christ Child's Lullaby, (vocal) an ancient Gaelic Carol from the Hebrides Islands off the west coast of Scotland, which is still sung as a traditional Gaelic carol at midnight masses in Scotland.


More exciting information from the CD Liner notes:
list of musicians/ instrumentation:

Al Petteway: Acoustic Guitars, Irish Bouzouki, Banjo, Fretless Bass, Vocals & Percussion
Amy White: Celtic Harp, Mandolin, Piano, Mountain Dulcimer, Acoustic Guitar, Fiddle, Whistle, Vocals & Percussion

track listing with times

1. Breakin’ up Christmas (4:10)
2. Joy to the World / The Gift (4:36)
3. The Holly and the Ivy (4:12)
4. Bring a Torch, Jeanette Isabella (3:07)
5. People Look East (3:21)
6. Cherry Tree Carol (5:06)
7. Into the Light (5:16)
8. Roving on a Winter‘s Night (5:27)
9. Aerial (3:49)
10. Gabriel’s Message / I Wonder as I Wander (5:00)
11. A New Year’s Carol / Sussex Carol / Tomorrow Will Be My Dancing Day (4:59)
12. Christ Child's Lullaby (4:15)
13. Star in the East / Born in Beth’ny (3:29)

total time 56:45

AL PETTEWAY & AMY WHITE create new music for a new generation with a brilliant convergence of Celtic and American styles.

AL PETTEWAY & AMY WHITE perform an exciting blend of contemporary, Celtic-influenced, original and traditional instrumental music on acoustic guitars, mandolin, piano, Irish bouzouki, vocals,Celtic harp, bass and world percussion. Their signature sound is heard daily on NPR and is featured in a number of movies and documentaries.Al & Amy have won a grand total of fifty Wammie awards in the Celtic, Folk, and New Age categories before relocating to the Asheville, NC. Al Petteway is a 2005 Grammy Winning Artist for his contribution to the Pink Guitar-Henry Mancini CD on Solid Air Records. As a duo have become one of the most respected acts on the acoustic music scene; were selected as Artists in Residence at the Kennedy Center's Millennium Stage and have performed at some of the most prestigious venues around the USA.They featured on seven Maggie's Music recordings.
press quotes:

"...sprightly,sensuous,sunny,entrancing and wonderfully evocative."- The Washington Post

"Simply one of the finest albums of Celtic-influenced music you are likely to hear....stunning......awesome.....majestic..." Dirty Linen Folk & World Music Magazine


A musical tribute to winter’s majesty in the Southern Appalachians from Grammy-Award winning guitarist Al Petteway & Amy White. Holiday classics, original, Celtic-inspired & traditional mountain melodies performed on acoustic guitars, mandolin, Celtic harp, Irish bouzouki, mountain dulcimer, vocals, fretless bass, pump organ, whistle, banjo, piano & percussion.

1. Breakin’ up Christmas (4:10)

2. Joy to the World / The Gift (4:36)

3. The Holly and the Ivy (4:12)

4. Bring a Torch, Jeanette Isabella (3:07)

5. People Look East (3:21)

6. Cherry Tree Carol (5:06)

7. Into the Light (5:16)

8. Roving on a Winter‘s Night (5:27)

9. Aerial (3:49)

10. Gabriel’s Message / I Wonder as I Wander (5:00)

11. A New Year’s Carol / Sussex Carol / Tomorrow Will Be My Dancing Day (4:59)

12. Christ Child's Lullaby (4:15)

13. Star in the East / Born in Beth’ny (3:29)

total time 56:45
Al: Acoustic Guitars, Irish Bouzouki, Banjo, Fretless Bass, Vocals & Percussion

Amy: Celtic Harp, Mandolin, Piano, Mountain Dulcimer, Acoustic Guitar, Fiddle, Whistle, Vocals & Percussion

From al and amy: "a poignant tribute- this recurring cycle of light and darkness, of life and loss, of hope and desperation. hear songs of devotion and ecstasy, and traditional melodies that are synonymous with winter celebration. You will also hear our own contributions to this tradition. Christmas music has always had a special place in our hearts. We are particularly fond of those ancient Noels with secular roots but which now bear fruit in the sacred tradition. We like to imagine that we are following in the footsteps of all those centuries-old devotees who incorporated traditional melodies into their spiritual practice. We, too, are helping to keep this expression and tradition alive by celebrating hope, unity, eternal peace, returning light and love - through music.Thank you for tending the light with us and for fostering peace in the world! "


Trad. Arr. Al Petteway & Amy White

Dashing through the snow with a favorite Old-Time fiddle tune. It is rare for this tune to be performed as a fingerstyle guitar showpiece in an alternate tuning. Naturally we couldn’t resist the challenge.


Trad. Arr. Al Petteway / Original by Al Petteway

Joy to the World is a Christmas hymn from the 19th century with lyrics by Isaac Watts. The music was written by Lowell Mason but is ostensibly laden with themes and refrains borrowed from Handel’s Messiah

– particularly the recitative, Comfort Ye and the choruses, Lift Up Your Heads and Glory to God, both from the same oratorio.


Trad. Arr. Amy White

Bringing in the green is an age-old tradition hailing from before the Romans’ Saturnalia all the way through to present day. Because of its early roots the act of decorating with evergreens was inevitably linked with paganism and was initially strictly forbidden by the Christian church. However, since the church chose to schedule Christmas during the traditional time of Saturnalia, this conflict - and thus this wonderful tradition – continued despite the ban. It seems only logical now for people of all religions to embrace the green this time of year. Ultimately, this tradition is a way for us all to honor the inevitable cycle of the seasons and embrace the concept of hope in its many incarnations (be it the returning sun or son.)


Trad. Arr. Amy White

This 14th century melody was first performed not as a sacred hymn, but as a dance. (Just as all carols have their roots in dance.) It was later published as a Christmas carol in 1553, with several variations thereafter. Today’s version most closely resembles the printed version from the early 20th century, with the French lyrics by Èmile Blémont. Our version here is purely instrumental. And though we begin with quiet tones, we end up practically rocking out during what is typically the ‘hush, hush’ refrain. We had a wonderful time playing with the odd rhythms in this carol.


Music, Trad. Arr. by Al Petteway & Amy White, Lyrics by Eleanor Farjeon, Alt. Lyrics by Anon.

This beautiful carol encourages the listener to look eastward with hope and anticipation. The tradition of looking east crosses several religions; Muslims have their Mecca, Christians have their Eden and Pagans have their Sun. Both the traditional lyrics (from the earlier version of this Carol of the Advent, often known as Shepherds, Shake Off Your Drowsy Sleep) and the more recent lyrics by Eleanor Farjeon are rich with beautiful nature analogies. In this arrangement, we included those verses with nature imagery that are universal to human perception, regardless of religion.


Trad. Arr. Al Petteway & Amy White

There are more than a half dozen versions of this carol. Our arrangement includes three different versions, the first of which is most closely associated with the Southern Appalachian region. We liked all three versions so much that we couldn’t choose just one! Although our arrangement is instrumental it is worth noting that all versions have nearly identical lyrics to the original song which dates back to the early 15th century and was later collected and recorded as Child Ballad #54 in the late 19th century.

7. INTO THE LIGHT (5:15)

by Amy White

In honor of the light and the countless ways that it graces our lives. The light at the end of the tunnel. The light we reach for near the closing of our lives. The light within that we cherish and protect, and which carries us through our most trying times. And that beautiful light of promise that foretells the return of spring.


Trad. Arr. Amy White & Al Petteway

A traditional Appalachian version of the poem, My Love is Like a Red, Red Rose by famed Scottish poet Robert Burns. We first heard this song on a Darol Anger recording and loved it ever since. Here we are, taking these old verses out again for a new spin in fresh-fallen snow.

9. AERIAL (3:48)

by Amy White

Our home is perched high near a ridge-top in the Southern Appalachian Mountains, tucked into a dense stand of trees. All through the seasons we watch birds soaring above us, past us and down into the valley below. Witnessing their flight is always an incredible experience. It often feels as if we, too, are on the wing, nearly weightless, turning and diving, all while taking in the vista below. With Aerial, I have tried to convey this sensation in song. I feel fortunate to have captured one such moment in the photograph on this CD cover.


Trad. Arr. Amy White

A traditional Basque Carol paired with the famous Appalachian spiritual collected by John Jacob Niles in Murphy, North Carolina in 1933. Niles learned this song from Annie Morgan, the daughter of an itinerant preacher, whom he paid 25 cents per performance until he memorized the gist of the song. The money came in handy as Morgan’s family needed gas money. They were being run out of town after being declared a public nuisance. Niles published the song in his 1934 collection, Songs of the Hill-Folk.


Britten/Trad./Trad. Arr. Amy White & Al Petteway

Three favorite carols from childhood. My family often hosted carol-singing parties during the Christmas season. These carols were among my parent’s favorites so naturally they became mine, as well. Ah, such fond memories of delicious treats and harmonies by the fireside and again outside in the crisp cool air, singing door to door.


Trad. Arr. by Al Petteway & Amy White

This beautiful carol comes from the Hebrides Islands off the west coast of Scotland. It is still sung as a traditional Gaelic carol at midnight masses in Scotland. We love the mother’s loving perspective in this lyric.


Trad. Arr. Al Petteway & Amy White

Star in the East is included in the famous shaped note hymnal “The Southern Harmony and Musical Companion” compiled by William Walker in the mid-19th century. Just like I Wonder as I Wander, this carol Born in Beth’ny (or Jesus, Borned in Bethlea) was collected by John Jacob Niles and is considered to be a traditional Appalachian carol. We thought this tune invited a festive treatment worthy of a Renaissance Fair.


All compositions & arrangements by Al Petteway and/or Amy White (BMI)

Recorded & mixed by Al Petteway at Fairewood Studios, Fairview, NC

Mastered by William Wolf, Wolf Productions, Inc., Falls Church, VA

Graphic design by Amy White, Fairewood Studios, Fairview, NC

All scenic and art photography by Amy White

Live concert photo taken at the National Geographic Society by Stephen St. John

Al & Amy play Kevin Ryan, RainSong & Larry Sifel guitars, their mandolin is by Weber, Harp by Dusty Strings, Piano by Boston, Dulcimer by Tom Fellenbaum & Bouzouki by Stefan Sobel

Stringed instruments (except dulcimer & harp) are strung with Elixer & D'Addario Strings and are outfitted with McIntyre pick-ups and L.R. Baggs pre-amps,Capos were provided by G7.

Al Petteway & Amy White
Winter Tidings
(Maggie's Music, 2006)

Holiday music should be cozy but not trite or drippingly sentimental. It should evoke both the crispness of winter and the warmth of a blazing hearth. And perhaps most importantly, it should be genuinely good music, as enjoyable to listen to in June as it is in December. Just a handful of CDs fit this bill: a few Windham Hill collections, the two Loreena McKennitt winter recordings -- and this latest CD by Al Petteway and Amy White, Winter Tidings, which has been in my CD player for the last week straight, despite the fact Christmas is months away.

Not to worry: if you're still suffering from Christmas music overload from last year, of the 13 tracks that make up Winter Tidings, only "Joy to the World" is very common, and even that has been combined with a new composition by Petteway and transformed into a bright, joyous guitar piece. Other tracks are new arrangements of old carols, particularly those with secular origins. They range from the quite obscure ("Bring a Torch, Jeanette, Isabella") to the somewhat overlooked ("The Holly & the Ivy"). But there are also a number of completely secular tracks, including two original pieces by White. The resulting blend is audibly fresh, yet rooted in traditional sounds and instruments; wintry, yet never exclusively or obtrusively Christmasy, and genuinely inviting.

As with the artists' earlier CD Land of the Sky, everything on Winter Tidings has a distinct Appalachian flavor, which is most evident on "Roving on a Winter's Night," an Appalachian song whose lyrics are based on Robert Burns' "My Love is Like a Red Red Rose." Petteway and White's version features a whole lot of banjo plucking and a lively vocal duet. About a third of the tracks contain vocals, and while Petteway and White have voices that are more pleasant than extraordinary, they do add considerably to the homey, intimate feeling of the CD. White's voice is particularly lovely on the gentle, simply arranged carol, "People Look East."

As a whole, however, it is the quality and variety of instrumentation that shines through in Winter Tidings. Mandolin, guitar, dulcimer and whistle are just a few of the instruments the artists play. There's also the easygoing and cheerful piano on "Bring a Torch, Jeanette, Isabella," the clear, synesthetically white harp on "Into the Light" and a whole bevy of acoustic instruments on the boisterous final track, "Star in the East/Born in Beth'ny," which the liner notes rightfully call "worthy of a Renaissance Fair." But my favorite track on the CD is probably "Gabriel's Message/I Wonder as I Wander," which begins with solemn church bells and moves into a fluid, slightly melancholy duet between guitar and piano.

By turns merry and contemplative, Winter Tidings captures the many faces of a winter in the countryside. It is truly lovely to listen to. There are no bad tracks, no sense of overproduction or affectation, and no tasteless sound effects. Like very few other recordings, Winter Tidings really is the perfect soundtrack to a winter evening -- or any evening you feel nostalgic for winter.--by Jennifer Mo,Rambles.NET,Dec, 2,2006

Al Petteway & Amy White:SONIC SEASONINGS 2006
WITH OTTMAR LIEBERT, THE CALIFORNIA GUITAR TRIO & AL PETTEWAY & AMY WHITE, ACOUSTIC EIDOLON....Immerse yourself in a different kind of Christmas soundscape with Sonic Seasonings 2006, a quartet of intimate acoustic performances for the holiday season featuring Ottmar Liebert, The California Guitar Trio, Al Petteway & Amy White and Acoustic Eidolon. Al Petteway and Amy White have just released a seasonal CD called Winter Tidings. With a delicate mix of guitars, mandolins and dulcimers, they play tunes that evoke the winter landscape of their North Carolina home. All four artists performed this winter on Sonic Seasonings 2006, heard on public radio stations throughout December and on Echoes December 22nd and December 24th. Contact: Kimberly Haas at for more information. 610-827-960

Here's a recent quotes from reviews for Maggie's Music new Holiday recording WINTER TIDINGS by Al Petteway & Amy White:

[Winter Tidings]“Easily the best Seasonal CD of 2006.”--John Diliberto, Echoes Radio Show ( 11-21-06)

more comments from Echoes: John says...
" Winter Tidings is the seasonal CD I’ve been waiting for. It’s a disc that captures that chilled air, fresh snow and magic world of Christmas that I grew up with in New England. They don’t take a religious view of Christmas but a country cosmic view born in Ireland, distilled in Appalachia and captured on the strings at their fingers. So they came up from their North Carolina home in mid February and cut a set for us in mid-November.
So tune in to Sonic Seasonings this year for some meticulously crafted acoustic chill.

" [Winter Tidings] ...happens to be one of the best of the season. Every year I name about a half-dozen CDs as Recordings of Exceptional Merit, and yours will be among them this year. I can hardly wait to play it for my listeners because you and Amy have put some real magic into your recording. Merry Christmas!" ---Gerry Grzyb,Host of Dr. Christmas WRST-FM ( 12-06-06)

Click here for more info about Gerry's show:

ABOUT GERRY:Gerry Grzyb, host of the Dr. Christmas radio shows on WRST-FM -- America's most diverse, for 17 years! Former Association For Independent Music "Indie" Award judge in the Seasonal Music category. perhaps the nation's foremost authority on Christmas music" - Kyle Munson, Music Critic - Des Moines Register (12/23/04)

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