This Just In ...

Kevin Fischer is a veteran broadcaster, the recipient of over 150 major journalism awards from the Milwaukee Press Club, the Wisconsin Associated Press, the Northwest Broadcast News Association, the Wisconsin Bar Association, and others. He has been seen and heard on Milwaukee TV and radio stations for over three decades. A longtime aide to state Senate Republicans in the Wisconsin Legislature, Kevin can be seen offering his views on the news on the public affairs program, "InterCHANGE," on Milwaukee Public Television Channel 10, and heard filling in on Newstalk 1130 WISN. He lives with his wife, Jennifer, and their lovely young daughter, Kyla Audrey, in Franklin.

The Music of Christmas: The Most Wonderful Time of the Year


When I was a mere child, there were certain annual TV Christmas specials you didn’t miss. In the Fischer household, one of them was the Andy Williams Christmas show.

Williams taught America that it was cool to wear V-neck or turtleneck sweaters.

That was over 40 years ago, but the name Andy Williams is still synonymous with Christmas. When he appeared at the Riverside Theater in December of 2000, Dave Tianen of the Milwaukee Journal/Sentinel wrote this in his review:

If Bing Crosby defined the sound of Christmas in the '40s and '50s, it was Andy Williams and his long-running series of holiday TV specials that gave voice to Christmas in the '60s.

Today, Williams is 73, and it takes the magnetism of Christmas to lure him from his home in Branson, Mo. It was his annual Christmas tour that brought Williams back to the Riverside.

Probably not even Williams would argue that it's a contemporary show. Doubtless, the older audience that nearly sold out the Riverside wasn't interested in a contemporary show. They wanted to bask in the warm glow of Christmases past, and Williams obliged them. Williams opened with his own holiday hit from 1963, "It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year."

Williams set the agenda when he told the crowd he wanted to sing some old chestnuts.

"Chestnuts are old songs that just get better and better with age," he said. "Just like me."

Amazingly, no one covered Williams’ big hit from 1963 for decades. A few newer versions have popped up in recent years, including one by Amy Grant.

In 1997, the Oklahoma City Philharmonic was selected to perform with Kathie Lee Gifford in her Christmas Special Just in Time for Christmas. The show was taped at the Civic Center Music Hall and featured performances with the orchestra by Grant.


Very nice!

But I can't do a blog about Andy Williams without Andy!

This site uses Facebook comments to make it easier for you to contribute. If you see a comment you would like to flag for spam or abuse, click the "x" in the upper right of it. By posting, you agree to our Terms of Use.

Page Tools