XPN midday host Helen Leicht has been celebrating the holidays on air since 2009 with her annual Home For the Holidays concert, gathering some of her favorite voices in the Philadelphia region to sing festive music for the final XPN Local show of the year.
For the tenth annual edition of the concert, Helen took Home For the Holidays out of the studio and onto the stage. Recorded on Sunday, December 2nd before a sold-out crowd at World Cafe Live, this year’s Home For the Holidays included ten musicians in the round, plus two featured performances and a group singalong to close the night.
In the round were pianist and singer-songwriter John Conahan, vocalist Lizanne Knott, singer-guitarist Bright Kelly of The Great Enough, singers Jeremy Keys and Becca Graham of Hardwork Movement, plus Katie Frank, Hayden Sammak of Deadfellow, Mutlu, Ali Awan and Brittany Thomas.
The program took two passes across the round, with each performer singing either a holiday original or a classic. The featured performers followed; first, Matthew Schuler of NBC’s The Voice sang “Mary Did You Know” by Michael English and “Hallelujah” by Leonard Cohen, the latter of which got him noticed on The Voice. Guitarist Danny Black (aka Dan Schwartz of Good Old War) accompanied Schuler on the latter, then delivered a shredding solo guitar performance of “Carol of the Bells,” Helen’s favorite holiday song.
To close out the concert, the whole cast took the stage for a singalong of John Lennon’s “Happy Xmas (War is Over).”
Below, listen to a full audio archive of the 10th Annual XPN Local Home For the Holidays concert, and check out a gallery of behind-the-scenes photos of the show by Lisa Schaffer. For more, scroll a little further to find the full concert setlist, plus videos of each artist’s performance, care of the XPN video crew of Galea McGregor and John Groome.
Lizanne Knott and John Conahan – “Christmastime”
Bright Kelly of The Great Enough – “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas”
Jeremy Keys and Becca Graham of Hardwork Movement – “Sleigh Ride”
Katie Frank – “Merry Christmas, Baby”
Deadfellow – “Christmas on the Block”
Mutlu – “This Christmas”
Ali Awan and Brittany Thomas – “(There’s No Place Like) Home for the Holidays”
Lizanne Knott and John Conahan – “River”
Bright Kelly of The Great Enough – “Christmas in LA”
Jeremy Keys and Becca Graham of Hardwork Movement – “The Christmas Song”
Katie Frank – “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)”
Deadfellow – “Girl from North Country”
Mutlu – “I’ll Be Home for Christmas”
Ali Awan and Brittany Thomas – “Rockin Around the Christmas Tree”
Matthew Schuler – “Mary Did you Know”
Matthew Schuler – “Hallelujah”
Danny Black of Good Old War – “Carol of the Bells”
Full Cast – “Happy Xmas (War is Over)”
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