U2's Bono and ex-Doobie Brother Michael McDonald are among the many stars who will appear on an upcoming holiday album by Grammy-winning contemporary Christian artist Michael W. Smith. Michael W. Smith & Friends: The Spirit of Christmas will be released on September 30, and also will feature many top country acts, including Martina McBride, Carrie Underwood, Vince Gill, Lady Antebellum, Little Big Town and Jennifer Nettles.
Bono lends his talents to the spoken-word track "The Darkest Midnight," while McDonald sings on a song called "Peace."
The album features orchestral accompaniment by the London Symphony Orchestra, with arrangements by David Hamilton, who co-produced the record with Smith and Robert Deaton. Smith and Deaton used The Carpenters' 1978 holiday album Christmas Portrait as the inspiration for The Spirit of Christmas. The new record features three thematic sections -- the first celebrating the start of the Christmas season, the second focusing on the importance of family and faith in relation to the holiday and the third commemorating the birth of Jesus.
Here is the full track list of Smith's The Spirit of Christmas:
"The Miracle of Christmas"
"It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year"
"Happy Holidays/Holiday Season"
"Christmas Time Is Here" (with Vince Gill)
"White Christmas" (with Lady Antebellum)
"Somewhere in My Memory"
"The Spirit of Christmas" ("Deck the Halls," "Good King Wenceslas," "O Little Town of Bethlehem," "Feels Like Christmas," "O Come All Ye Faithful")
"Silent Night" (with Little Big Town)
"What Child Is This" (with Martina McBride)
"Almost There" (with Amy Grant)
"All Is Well" (with Carrie Underwood)
"Christmas Day" (with Jennifer Nettles)
"The Darkest Midnight" (spoken word by Bono)
"Peace" (with Michael McDonald)
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