By Aaron Wagner
With it officially being December we are full swing in Christmas mode here at Raised On It and do we have the Christmas song for you this week.
Elizabeth Lyons and Corri English released a Christmas song that is contagiously fun with “Feelin’ Like Christmas.”
In a year that has been filled with lots of….not fun stuff…”Feelin’ Like Christmas” is a breath of fresh air this holiday season. The thing that stands out is that yes it’s a Christmas song, but it still has country music in its DNA. The guitars and overall production is something that’s so authentically country, which helps this song stand out from many of the other holiday songs that are released.
I caught up with Elizabeth and Corri to get the backstory on how this song came to be and what they’re looking forward to at Christmas this year.
Raised On It: What made you want to write an original Christmas song, rather than covering one of the classics?
Elizabeth: I’ve always wanted to write and release a Christmas song! My first solo was singing at Kenilworth Union Church as a three kings… I remember I was so nervous I made up the words! At my church Christmas music is a huge part of Christmas. Growing up, each grade would learn a Christmas song and sing it to the chapel plus on Christmas Eve the ceremony is made up of the chapel singing Christmas songs. Whether its tear jerker “Silent Night” to bright and cheery “Joy to the World”, I realized at a young age how powerful music is when sung in harmony all together.
Corri: I LOVE Christmas! And with my dad being a musician, our home was always filled with music — especially during the holidays! We used to have huge holiday parties, and so many friends would grab guitars and play a mix of holiday classics, as well as original songs! Being a writer, I am such a sucker for someone telling their story — it draws me in in a completely different way to know that the words they’re singing came from the heart. The chance to sit down with some amazing co-writers to create a Christmas song of our own, using our own memories and traditions, was something that was too meaningful to pass up! But don’t be mistaken – those guitars will definitely be playing some Sleigh Bells Ring along with our new tune this year!
Raised On It: What was this particular write like?
Elizabeth: The song was born of time spent with one another hanging out, drinking some good wine, and reflecting on the things for which we’re most grateful. The result was an up-tempo, singalong-able song that pays homage to “It’s a Wonderful Life” — the perfect reference for finding a new perspective amidst the (seemingly) worst of times. Not to mention that getting to Christmas means we are THIS close to the end of a crazy year — that alone seemed reason enough for a feel-good song celebrating the good stuff! I remember Danny said “lets use ‘Let’s December’ almost as if its a verb” and then I was like “Let’s Keep it falalala feelin like Christmas is so hooky.” Corri sang it and we worked off of that. It’s so fun when it all comes together so naturally!
Corri: Sometimes, writing is a chore — that doesn’t mean you don’t get a great song, but it’s not always easy! Other times, the energy in the room just flows, and if feels like the song just falls out effortlessly — and this song was one of those! We knew we wanted to create a feel-good song, so we embraced the holiday spirit — complete with Christmas decorations, Santa hats (with beards, of course), and some really good wine! We had the feeling in the room that we wanted to capture in the song — and it all came together.
Raised On It: There’s a good mix of it sounding like a country and Christmas song — was that intentional or what vibe were you looking for?
Elizabeth: YES! Exactly! The goal was to capture the relaxed, happy vibes that were in the room that day and share it each time the song is played.
Corri: I’m so happy to hear that, because it’s exactly what we were going for! Although all 3 of us write outside of the genre for other artists, our hearts are in the world of country, and that’s where we live as artists. I think the country side of each of us — the story-telling, the roots in the South — came out totally organically!
Raised On It: What do you enjoy most about Christmastime?
Elizabeth: Family time and traditions! My family is my everything! We have several traditions from making my Grandma’s cookie recipe, decorating cookies and gingerbread houses, to shopping and wrapping presents for a family in need and dropping them off at church. On Christmas Eve, we go to church and we used to have a concert where everyone in the family sings a Christmas song at the piano, but now we watch old home videos.
Corri: Time with family, hands down. A moment to put everything else aside — a time when it can all wait (quite a feat in this non-stop world we live in!). The chance to freeze time, and live in a bubble of celebration and joy and gratitude with our favorite people – THAT!!
Raised On It: Anything else you want people to know about the song?
Elizabeth: What Corri said! Corri, Danny and I all connect because we share a love for spreading joy and hope to people through our music and that is the goal! As the song goes, “Share a smile, Give a hug, Kiss a check, Don’t need no reason, yeah, given cheer, round here’s always gonna be in season.”
Corri: What I would love more than anything in sharing this song, is to pay the joy forward — it’s been such a tough year, and I believe that even the smallest opportunities to share kindness, or create happy moments, are more invaluable than ever. I’d love to think this song will play its part in spreading some good feels. Whether it’s sharing our song, secretly paying for the coffee for the guy behind you at Starbucks, or just taking the time to tell someone they’re special to you — I hope we can inspire some passing along of smiles and kindness, in whatever way that means!