Joshua Mills

Joshua Mills

Most Christmas albums are recorded within a span of weeks in one studio. But when you’re Joshua Mills, a 15-year veteran worship leader and recording artist, it’s difficult to find the time to be in one studio, or city for very long. Touring across the country singing and ministering to the masses made recording his new holiday album, Christmas Miracle, a unique creative process.

The album’s recording destinations served as a musical map to Joshua’s ministry as it followed him from city to city on tour. Recorded in Los Angeles, Orlando, Tampa, Vancouver, London, Ontario and Nashville, the fact that the production came together was in itself, a Christmas miracle.

That theme stayed with him as he recorded and the idea of bringing the miracles back to Christmas carried a lot of significance to the album title. Being able to see the extraordinary possibilities of God, the miracles, is at the epicenter of the holiday season and seemed a fitting focus to the disc.

In the world of independent artists, funding an album can be one of the biggest challenges. For Mills, it came naturally. Utilizing modern crowd funding resource Kickstarter, Joshua not only met his goal, but exceeded it by $10,000. With a supportive global fan-base in his court and an innate fervor to spread holiday cheer, Christmas Miraclewas born.

With smooth vocals, piano-driven melodies and contemporary beats, this album instantly transports the listener into a warm and fuzzy holiday state of mind. It is produced by Jack Shocklee (Toby Mac, Beckah Shae) and features several guest vocals including Meka King and LaRue Howard.

The Christmas season brings with it traditions and memories that are most present in familiar music. Growing up in Joshua Mills’ childhood home, it just wasn’t Christmas unless Anne Murray, Amy Grant or The Carpenters were playing in the background. So for Joshua, including some of the classics on his album was an obvious choice.

But it is the less well-known Christmas songs featured on the disc that make it a stand-out. Like the song “C-H-R-I-S-T-M-A-S” that he had never heard a recording of but his family had always sung around the tree on Christmas day. It was such a moving memory to him that he incorporated his family’s vocals on the track, including his Grandfather who would read the nativity story each holiday.

Another stand out track is “Angels From the Realms of Glory” sung to the tune of “Angels We Have Heard On High”. Combining the familiar melody with meaningful, less-well known lyrics creates an innovative new holiday song. Having Christian recording artist and personal friend Beckah Shae accompany doesn’t hurt the songs’ appeal either.

It is that combination of traditional Christmas classics and new original tracks that create a well-rounded and elevating compilation. “I wanted this album to be deeply spiritual but I also wanted it to be extremely fun because I think God is fun.”

“It Snowed” is the first single on the album and generates that feeling of fun and lightheartedness that the holidays bring out in all of us. It was recorded at Capitol Records in Los Angeles. While in the studio, Joshua recorded on the same microphone as Frank Sinatra and channeled his inner Rat Pack in this modern classic written by Canadian singer-songwriter Meaghan Smith.

Coming from a worship background, it was instinctive for him to write the original song “Precious Baby” which takes on a Christmas worship tone. The lyrics transition from singing about the Emmanuel with a shepherd’s heart, to adoring Him from the perspective of the wisemen and finally identifying Him as King and Savior. The single also features the vocals of Grace Williams, a fellow worship leader from Orange County California.

“When I think about Christmas, I think about what happens at Christmas that doesn’t happen at any other time of the year. That we get to celebrate the things that are dearest to us: the people, the places, the atmospheres, the food….the music. Everything that we love so much it all comes out at Christmas to celebrate the miracles that the holiday represents.”

It is those miracles that are transported straight from Joshua’s heart and into the living-rooms of listeners everywhere. For more information about Joshua Mills, please visit: www.joshuamillsmusic.com