Natasha is scheduled to be the featured artist on the well known Chicago concert series Folkstage which is an uninterrupted, one-hour concert featuring some of the best traditional and singer-songwriter talent in folk music. The live concerts can be are heard Saturday’s at 8 PM on WFMT, immediately preceding The Midnight Special.
About 26 concerts per year are broadcast live from the WFMT studio in front of an audience. The remainder of the concerts are from their archives that stretch back 45 years, recent recordings made in the Chicago area, live broadcasts from the Old Town School of Folk Music, or recorded portions of their live studio concerts that were not previously broadcast.
While performing at the WDVX Blue Plate Special in Knoxville, Tennessee, Natasha was also interviewed and her performance was filmed for the popular PBS show Tennessee Crossroads. The show aired in late 2012 and below is the video clip.
The show is a popular hour long show which introduces the Bluegrass Junction audience to new bluegrass releases. To quote Kyle as he spoke about Donna’s new album on air, “this album is a masterpiece.”
The show aired on Channel 61 SiriusXM over the Christmas holidays five times with its’ final airing on Christmas night. Thank you to all who listened and for your positive feedback and comments through the website and Facebook. Below was the schedule of airings.
“All The Way To Bethlehem” is not your run of the mill Christmas album.” -Derek Halsey/Herald-Dispatch/Huntington, WV
“Her energetic and moving song cycle captures the emotions of every character in the biblical story found in Luke 1-3 of the events leading up to and surrounding Jesus’ birth.” -Henry L. Carrigan/Engine 145
“Anyone looking for a fresh take on Christmas albums this holiday season won’t go wrong with this collection.” – John Goad/BluegrassToday.com
“This isn’t just another Christmas album. Donna Ulisse has written a song cycle that has been thought-out and given caring attention to detail that surpasses most others.” -Greg Victor/Parcbench.com
“The Christmas story and something more, All The Way To Bethlehemtranscends not only the time frame of its narrative but our own time as well. As much a literary as a musical event, it belongs, at once, to all seasons and to the ages.” -David McGee/Bluegrass Special
“Listening to the words of these songs provides a wonderful insight into the journey and conditions during which Christ was born. A masterpiece!” -David Foster/Bluegrass Unlimited
To read all of the full reviews click here.
With movie-like drama and clarity, Donna Ulisse re-tells the story of Christ’s conception and birth in her powerful new album, All The Way To Bethlehem. But this is not a conventional Christmas CD. Rather it occupies the same artistic territory as such Bible-based narratives as Jesus Christ Superstar and Joseph and The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.
All The Way To Bethlehem will be released October 23rd.
Inspired by the myth about the origin of the inn near which Christ was born, Ulisse put herself in the place of the harried innkeeper who had to turn Joseph and his pregnant wife Mary away, even as he sympathized with their plight. This yielded the album’s keystone song “You Cannot Stay Here”. From there, Ulisse and a corps of gifted co-writers, conjured up the words and feelings of the other figures in this timeless saga–the angel that delivers the unsettling news to Mary; the puzzled but compliant Joseph; Mary’s much older cousin, Elisabeth, who also conceives miraculously; even the Star of Bethlehem, beaming with pride and self-importance as it heralds this earth-changing event. But above all, there is Mary, the radiant new mother, who whispers to her baby before surrendering him to his divine destiny, “Let the world wait
for a little while.”
Produced by Keith Sewell, the much-praised sideman for the Dixie Chicks, Lyle Lovett and Ricky Skaggs, the 11 songs on the album are performed principally to acoustic instruments. In addition to Sewell, the musicians include Andy Leftwich, of Skaggs, Kentucky Thunder band; Viktor Krauss, who, like Sewell, has long been a mainstay in Lovett’s band; Rob Ickes, the multiple award-winning dobroist and member of the Grammy-nominated bluegrass group, Blue Highway; Byron House, whose many musical achievements include membership in Robert Plant’s Band Of Joy; John Mock, who counts James Taylor, Kathy Mattea and the National Orchestra of Ireland among his array of live and recorded credits; and vocalists Wendy Buckner Sewell, Ana Sewell and Rick Stanley.
All The Way To Bethlehem has a companion songbook. It will also be available in choral arrangements next year. Ulisse, a recent nominee for the IBMA’s Bluegrass Songwriter of the Year award, will perform the full album at upcoming Christmas shows with her band, The Poor Mountain Boys.
Donna Ulisse was nominated for the first ever International Bluegrass Music Association’s Songwriter of the Year Award along with Jon Weisberger and Tom T. and Dixie Hall. The award is one of the Special Awards given at the Thursday Awards luncheon during the IBMA World of Bluegrass Conference each year. The nominees were decided upon by a committee of peers after looking over strict criteria for the body of work during the eligibility period.
Hadley Music Group is proud to not only be Donna’s record label but also be the home of her complete songwriting catalog.
Hadley Music artist Donna Ulisse was thrilled to get a call from Miss Dixie Hall to sing on her upcoming Daughters of Bluegrass project. The project will be a boxed set of songs written by Dixie Hall and Tom T. Hall. All of the instrumentation and vocals are provided by women in the Bluegrass music arena.
Donna had an added thrill when one of her longtime vocal favorites Fayssoux McLean drove in from South Carolina to sing harmony with her and then found out that Pam Tillis added her voice to the tune also!
Natasha Borzilova made her debut appearance on the world famous WDVX Blue Plate Special in Knoxville, TN on July 26, 2012. The show is broadcast live from the Knoxville Visitor’s Center in downtown Knoxville and people listen in online from the world over.