True to this Southern roots, Nashville based Jazz/Adult Contemporary crossover artist, Scott Gray, always delivers the charm. His version of “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” is currently playing on stations around the world.
“Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas”
What is your fondest holiday memory as a kid?
I have many fond holiday memories from my childhood, so it’s really difficult to pick just one. But if I had to pick, it’s the memory of my Grandma Wall’s Christmas sugar cookies. Every holiday, Grandma would bake this certain type of sugar cookie (a recipe’ that I’ve not had anywhere else) all in the shape of the Nativity. If I think about it, it’s really amazing how something so simple created such wonderful memories…it was something that I always looked forward to when going to her house during the holidays.
Do you still get excited about seeing gifts under the tree? What was your most favorite surprise? Yes…I still get excited to see brightly colored packages wrapped underneath the glow of a Christmas tree. As a young child, I was obsessed for some reason over St. Bernard puppies. I wanted one so, so badly. One year, Santa brought me a stuffed St. Bernard dog. True, it wasn’t a REAL St. Bernard, but I cherished that toy all the same and I even slept with it every night. Believe it or not, I still have that toy. It’s fur is now maybe all matted down…with a couple of torn spots…and missing an eye (or two)…but I still think it’s a very special part of my life.
Do you have any special holiday family traditions you would like to share? Starting with when my oldest son, Aidan, was a very little boy, whenever we would leave for Christmas Eve Midnight Mass, I would “conveniently” have forgotten something in house before driving away. While everyone waited for me outside in the car, I would rush around the house putting gifts under the tree that Santa had left behind. Of course, once we returned from the church service, there were gifts absolutely everywhere. We always explained to the boys that by the time we returned home from church in the very wee hours of Christmas morning, that Santa must have made our house his first stop. Aidan’s face (and of course a few years later my other son, Conor’s, face), would absolutely light up with excitement. And they believed every bit of it. This routine had become one of my favorite traditions of all time!
In your opinion, what is the all-time best holiday song?
Without question, I think “Love Has Come” as performed by Amy Grant is the all-time best holiday song. I think it spells out the message of Christmas perfectly!
Do you believe in Santa?
I do believe in Santa. In fact, I believe Santa can exist in all of us…but to have the spirit of Santa requires selflessness, empathy, compassion, and love.
What do you enjoy more? Receiving gifts or giving them?
Hands down, giving gifts is the BEST!
What charities do you support? My wife, Nicole, and I give to our parish church, St. Philip, here in Franklin, TN. We also give to my alma mater, Belmont University, as well as the private High School that Nicole attended called Mater Dei. We really believe in the gift of education. But one of my favorite organizations in which to give is Heifer International. Every year, we try to give at least one cow. Sound intriguing? Learn more at www.heifer.org.
What are your top 5 favorite holiday songs?
– “Love Has Come” by Amy Grant
– “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” by Judy Garland
– “White Christmas” by Bing Crosby
– “Mary Did You Know” by Mark Lowry
– “The Christmas Song” by Nat King Cole
Have you ever gotten a lump of coal in your stocking? Now why would I ever get a lump of coal for Christmas when I have a heart of gold ; )
What are you looking forward to in 2021? My hope for 2021, at least, is that we will all be a little kinder, gentler, and understanding with each another. If there’s anything that I hope we learned in 2020 is that we need to offer more GRACE. Something that I’ve learned over the years is this: true miracles can only happen through and between each of us. Think about that. #loveoneanother.