The Season Comes Alive With A MANNHEIM STEAMROLLER CHRISTMAS At The McCallum
The McCallum Theatre presents Mannheim Steamroller Christmas by Chip Davis for two performances on Friday, November 29, at 3:00pm and 8:00pm. Mannheim Steamroller Christmas by Chip Davis has been America's favorite holiday tradition for over 30 years. Grammy winner Chip Davis has created a show featuring Mannheim Steamroller Christmas classics along with compositions from Chip's Fresh Aire series which introduced the distinctive Mannheim sound to America. Dazzling multimedia effects are performed in an intimate setting as the spirit of the season comes alive with the Signature Sound of Mannheim Steamroller.
Since founding Mannheim Steamroller and American Gramaphone Records in 1974, Davis has written, arranged, and recorded over 35 albums, highlighted by the multi-Platinum Mannheim Steamroller catalog. The best-selling Christmas music artist in history, Davis has achieved worldwide sales in excess of 40 million, with four multi-Platinum, eight Platinum, and 19 Gold certifications in the U.S. alone. Furthermore, Davis is the entrepreneur behind the successful Mannheim Steamroller product line, author of five acclaimed children's books, amateur astronomer, and dedicated philanthropist.
American Gramaphone recently commemorated its impact on popular culture with Mannheim Steamroller 30/40, a multi-media celebration of Davis' milestone works: 1974's Fresh Aire and 1984's Mannheim Steamroller Christmas. Mannheim Steamroller 30/40 Live had its Public Broadcasting debut in 2015 and continues to rank among PBS' most popular special programming.
The man behind Mannheim was born Louis F. Davis, Jr. in the small town of Hamler, Ohio, to a family to whom music and "a sensitivity to nature" were integral. He graduated the University of Michigan with mastery in bassoon and percussion before taking a job with the Omaha ad agency Bozell & Jacobs. In 1974, Davis and fellow ad exec Bill Fries teamed up to create a fictional truck driver named "C.W. McCall" for a series of Clio Award-winning commercials. A string of hit albums and Top 40 singles followed, including the Gold #1 classic "Convoy."
The success of C.W. McCall allowed Davis to focus on his original music. He dubbed his new band Mannheim Steamroller, a play on the 18th-century musical technique known as the "Mannheim crescendo." In 1975, he recorded Fresh Aire, melding elements of classical, rock, and pop into something unique. Davis decided to distribute and sell Fresh Aire on his own, and American Gramaphone Records was born.
Davis employed innovative marketing to spread his "18th Century Classical Rock" and Fresh Airefound its way onto record store shelves, fitted with the newly created classification "New Age." Each installment in the Fresh Aire series saw Mannheim Steamroller pushing forward, earning multi-million album sales, countless fans, and, with Fresh Aire 7, the 1991 Grammy for "Best New Age Album."
In 1984, Davis had the idea to reinvigorate traditional carols and Yuletide staples via Mannheim Steamroller's eclectic sonic approach. Mannheim Steamroller Christmas proved a phenomenon, the band's first to reach the Billboard 200 album chart and 6x Platinum certification. A Fresh Aire Christmas (1988) achieved 6x Platinum certification and surpassed its monumentally successful predecessor.
Further Christmas collections, including 1995's 4x Platinum Christmas In The Aire and 2001's 3x Platinum Christmas Extraordinaire, resulted in cumulative Christmas album sales in excess of 28 million. The Mannheim Steamroller Christmas Tour became a tradition; now in its 34th year, the Tour is among the longest lasting and most successful musical caravans in industry history, with two separate troupes performing in nearly 90 cities each year. Another incarnation headlines holiday festivities at Universal Orlando Resort on select Saturday and Sunday nights during December.
Davis also introduced a popular Mannheim Steamroller product line and hosts "Mannheim Steamroller's An American Christmas," an annual 12-hour radio special on over 450 stations across the U.S.
Mannheim Steamroller has observed additional holidays, including Halloween and July 4th, while also exploring inspirations spanning the music of Walt Disney films to the majesty of Yellowstone National Park. A committed naturalist, Davis and his American Gramaphone crew of sound technicians have amassed a catalog of natural sounds, from the Tucson desert to the full sonic span of all four seasons in the Midwest. The recordings are highlighted on Davis' Ambience series, used in esteemed medical facilities, including Walter Reed National Military Hospital.
Neck surgery in 2004 inspired Davis' creation of Ambient Therapy, a patented system for faster healing by reducing stress, anxiety and other barriers to recovery via musical content and 4-channel surround sound algorithms. Davis has donated Ambient Therapy to both Minnesota's Mayo Clinic and The National Intrepid Center for Excellence and is now actively involved in integrating the system into the NASA medical program.
Davis' lifelong interest in astronomy led to a relationship with NASA, including several trips to the Kennedy Space Center and the Johnson Space Center where his team recorded Space Shuttle launches and landings, characterized as "the most accurate ever made."
"There wasn't any business plan when I started American Gramaphone," he says. "There wasn't any target I was looking at. It's always been about just moving forward and doing things I like to do."
Tickets for these performances are priced at $98, $78, and $68, depending on performance time and seating. Tickets are available at the Theatre's website at www.mccallumtheatre.com or by calling the McCallum Theatre Box Office at (760) 340-2787. The McCallum Theatre, located at 73000 Fred Waring Drive, Palm Desert CA 92260, accepts payment by cash, personal check, VISA, MasterCard, Discover and American Express.