Andrew Peterson Releases Christmas Album

Acclaimed singer/songwriter, Andrew Peterson recently unveiled his long-awaited Christmas recording, Behold the Lamb of God, just in time for the holidays. The project blends Peterson’s vivid songwriting with an impressive array of musical talents including Jill Phillips, Todd Bragg, Garett Buell, and Andrew Osenga (of Caedmon’s Call), Ron Block (of Alison Krauss and Union Station), Phil Madeira, and Derek Webb.
A departure from typical Christmas recordings that center on holiday classics, Behold the Lamb of God peers deep into the Old Testament, walking chronologically through the historic events that culminated in the birth of Christ and expressing them through music. In addition to Peterson’s uniquely-told tales of Moses, Pharaoh, Mary, and Joseph, the artist intertwined a few familiar melodies too, including a memorable hammered dulcimer version of “The Holly and The Ivy.”
“It’s a pretty different approach to an album,” Peterson explains. “I don’t know of any Christian albums like it in that it’s a concept album with a story-telling style. My foremost concern was with accurately conveying the story of Christ’s birth, and doing it as artfully as possible.”
The idea for Behold the Lamb of God struck Peterson five years ago when he set out to compose a musical rendition of the Christmas story to remind people of the holiday’s true significance. Once the series of songs was completed, Peterson began performing them annually to sold-out crowds, always punctuating the string of shows with an ensemble performance in his hometown of Nashville. Past events have featured such artists as Alison Krauss, Phil Keaggy, and members of Nickel Creek, who have joined Peterson and friends for an in-the-round segment before gathering on stage to perform the Christmas songs.  This year’s Nashville performance will be held at the historic Ryman Auditorium on Sunday, December 12th at 8 PM. Musical guests for the upcoming concert include Julie Miller, Pierce Pettis, and Phil Keaggy.        
With fans continually requesting a recording of the songs, Peterson finally found time to record Behold the Lamb of God, completing the independent project in a friend’s basement studio this summer. The album quickly gained the attention of Fervent Records who offered to distribute it to stores nationwide. Since its release last month, Behold has sold over 1000 copies via the artist’s website alone, evidence that Peterson has indeed hit the mark with his approach to Christmas music.
“I grew up in the church, but it wasn’t until later in life that it hit me how broad and beautiful the epic story really is; I was blown away,” Peterson admits.  “I thought it was a story that needed to be told, that Christians need to learn if they’ve never learned it.  At the very least, we need to be reminded of it.  Jesus’ birth was not a spur-of-the-moment decision.  All of the Old Testament leans toward the coming of a Savior, and that’s the story this album tells.”
Peterson has long been known for his intricate songwriting and transparent candor on stage, often drawing comparisons to predecessor Rich Mullins. While signed to Watershed/Essential Records from 1999 to early 2004, Peterson recorded three national releases including his award-winning Carried Along, which featured the top ten radio single, “Nothing to Say.”


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