Joy to the Mountain: after 20 years, Hanson fans get second Christmas album

The pop rock group Hanson released its first Christmas album “Snowed In” 20 years ago — it was 1997’s best-selling holiday album. If you’ve been waiting for them to come out with another one ever since, your wait is over! “Finally It’s Christmas.”

The three Hanson brothers, Isaac, Taylor, and Zac, were 11, 9, and 6 years old when they began singing as a group in 1992. Over the next five years, they developed a soulful pop-rock style and gradually built up a fanbase in their hometown of Tulsa, Oklahoma. They were heavily influenced by music from the 1950s and ’60s (notably, Aretha Franklin, Otis Redding, The Beatles, Elvis, Little Richard and Chuck Berry). Suddenly, in 1997, the song “Mmmbop” from their “Middle of Nowhere” album made them instant celebrities and earned a Grammy nomination. As the Hanson brothers say of their group’s 25th anniversary: “Doing anything for a quarter century is rare, even more rare when you include global fame at a young age, years of touring, writing and recording, founding an independent label, and balancing brotherhood and business.”

“Finally It’s Christmas” includes classic songs like “Winter Wonderland, “Blue Christmas,” and “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas.” For “Jingle Bells” and “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer,” the Hanson brothers were joined by their children (they have ten between the three of them). The album also has some original songs, starting off with their feel-good holiday anthem “Finally It’s Christmas.” Another new number is “‘Til New Year’s Night,” which has a doo-wop flavor. But it’s with “Joy to the Mountain” that Hanson did something really interesting: a unique mashup of “Joy to the World” and “Go Tell it on the Mountain.”

In the video posted below you’ll see the Hanson brothers performing “Joy to the Mountain” during their recent tour. All they needed to make the music happen was their voices and, to keep the beat, their feet.

How did you like Hanson’s creative new Christmas mashup? We’d love to hear your review in the comments at Facebook. Don’t forget to like and share!