Smorgasbord Christmas Breakfast Show with William Price King and Sally Cronin – Music to get you into the festive spirit


Welcome to the Christmas Breakfast Show which we hope you will enjoy. William Price King has selected three of his favourite festive tracks, and I have chosen three of mine.

Thank you for joining us today and I hope your preparations are going well for Christmas Day.. here are three festive songs I hope you will enjoy.

Jingle bells  –  Ella Fitzgerald 

“Jingle bells” was written by James Lord Pierpont and published under the title “The one horse open sleigh” in the autumn of 1857. Supposedly, it was originally written to be sung by a Sunday school choir, or as a drinking song but became associated with Christmas music in the 1860s and 1870s. It was initially featured in a variety of parlor song and college anthologies in the 1880s and was first recorded in 1889 on an Edison cylinder.

Carol of the bells  –  The Mormon Tabernacle Choir

This Carol was written in 1914 by the Ukrainian composer Mykola Leontovych with lyrics by Peter J. Wilhousky, and is based on the Ukrainian folk chant “Shchedryk.” It has been performed in many genres: classical, jazz, country, metal, rock, pop, and rap, and has been featured in films, television shows, and parodies

Nat King Cole  –  The Christmas Song 

“The Christmas Song” (Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire as it is commonly called, or Merry Christmas to You, as it was originally subtitled) was penned by Mel Tormé and Robert Wells in 1945. According to Tormé, the song was written in July during a blistering hot summer in an effort to “stay cool by thinking cool.” The Nat King Cole Trio first recorded the song in June 1946, and this version was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1974

Now time for my selection and I hope you will be dancing and singing along to the songs.

Mariah Carey – All I Want For Christmas Is You

“All I Want for Christmas Is You” is a Christmas song by American singer Mariah Carey. She co-wrote and co-produced it with Walter Afanasieff for her fourth studio album and first holiday album, Merry Christmas (1994). Columbia Records released it as the lead single from the album on October 29, 1994.

It is Carey’s biggest international success, topping the charts in twenty-six countries including Australia, Canada, France and Germany. In 2019, it topped the Billboard Hot 100 for the first time, 25 years after its original release, thus breaking several records, including the longest trip to number one. The following year, it also topped the charts in the United Kingdom for the first time, spending a record 69 weeks in its top 40 prior to reaching number one. Mariah Carey 

Leona Lewis – Just One More Sleep

“One More Sleep” is a song recorded by British singer Leona Lewis for her first Christmas album and fourth studio album, Christmas, with Love (2013). It was written by Lewis in collaboration with Richard “Biff” Stannard, Iain James, Jez Ashurst and Bradford Ellis, and produced by Richard “Biff” Stannard. It was released in the United States on 5 November, in Ireland and the United Kingdom on 29 November and many parts of Europe on 2 December. “One More Sleep” is recognised as one of the biggest recent Christmas songs in the UK according to the Official Charts Company. leonalewis 

Johnny Mathis – It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas

“It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas” is a Christmas song written in 1951 by Meredith Willson. The song was originally titled “It’s Beginning to Look Like Christmas”. The song has been recorded by many artists, but was a hit for Perry Como and The Fontane Sisters with Mitchell Ayres & His Orchestra and Bing Crosby recorded a version on October 1, 1951, which was also widely played. This version by Johnny Mathis is one of my favourites.

Additional sources: Wikipedia 

Your Hosts for The Breakfast Show

William Price King is an American jazz singer, crooner, and composer.

His interest in music began at an early age when he studied piano and clarinet in high school. At Morehouse College in Atlanta where he grew up, he sang in the Glee Club and studied classical music. After graduation he went off to the Yale School of Music where he earned a Masters degree. From there he journeyed to New York where he created a jazz trio ‘Au Naturel’ which performed in some of the hottest venues in Manhattan including gigs on Broadway and the famous ‘Rainbow Room.’ These gigs opened doors for performances in Montreal and a European tour.

While touring Europe he met a lovely French lady, Jeanne Maïstre, who, a year later became his wife. King left the group ‘Au Naturel’ and settled in the south of France where he started a new life on the French Riviera, opening his own music school – the “Price King Ecole Internationale de Chant.” He has had the pleasure over the years of seeing many of his students excel as singers on a professional level, and some going on to become national celebrities. He continues to coach young singers today, in his spare time.

Blog– IMPROVISATION William Price King on Tumblr – Buy William’s music: William Price King iTunes – FacebookWilliam Price King – Twitter@wpkofficial
Regular Venue – Cave Wilson

Sally Cronin is an author, blogger and broadcaster who enjoyed four years as part of the team on Onda Cero International’s English speaking morning show in Marbella and then for two years as a presenter on Expressfm the local radio station in Portsmouth. She co-presented two ‘Drive Time’ shows a week with Adrian Knight, hosted the live Thursday Afternoon Show and The Sunday Morning Show guests including musicians and authors. Following this she became Station Director for a local internet television station for two years, producing and presenting the daily news segment, outside broadcasts and co-presenting the Adrian and Sally chat show live on Friday evenings.

She and her husband David have now returned to Ireland where they live on the Wexford Coast where she blogs and continues to write books.

Books :Amazon US – And: Amazon UK – More reviews: Goodreads – blog: Smorgasbord Blog Magazine Twitter: @sgc58 – Facebook: Sally Cronin – LinkedIn: Sally Cronin

We hope you will tune in next Tuesday for the first part of hits from 1985 as always we love to hear from you.. thanks William and Sally.

Smorgasbord Summer Music Festival with hosts William Price King and Sally Cronin – Headliners Johnny Mathis, Led Zeppelin and the Beach Boys.


The music festivals such as Glastonbury will not be laid on this year with thousands of fans putting their glamping (and less than glam) weekends on hold until next year.

Whilst not the same as sitting in the rain and mud, amongst thousands of other fans listening to the headliners, over the next three months, every two weeks, we will be staging a summer music festival of our own.

William Price King has been writing the music column for the last five years, showcasing wonderful musicians and singers of the last 75 years and I will be playing music from those series.

I will be also sharing tracks from my favourite music from the last 50 years across the rock and roll, country and pop charts.

We hope you will enjoy the music…

From the Johnny Mathis series

“A Certain Smile,” written for the 1958 film of the same name, based on the novel, also titled “A Certain Smile,” by Françoise Sagan (known in French as “Un Certain Sourire”) was nominated for the 1958 Academy Award for Best Original Song. The music was written by Sammy Fain with lyrics by Paul Francis Webster. Johnny Mathis appeared in the film as a bar singer performing the title song. Mathis’ recording, with backing orchestration by Ray Ellis, reached number 4 on the UK Singles Chart and number 14 on the Billboard Hot 100. The song was featured in the 2010 BBC production of “A Passionate Woman.”

“Let It Be Me: Mathis in Nashville” was released in 2010, by Columbia Records and focused upon popular country songs. With the exceptions of the traditional folk song “Shenandoah” and George Strait’s “We Must Be Lovin’ Right” from 1993, the heyday of the selections that Mathis is covering coincided approximately with the first 20 years of his career, starting with Elvis Presley’s “Love Me Tender” from 1956.

The album earned Mathis a Grammy Award nomination for “Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album.

“Stairway to Heaven” is a song by the English rock band Led Zeppelin, released in late 1971. It was composed by the band’s guitarist Jimmy Page and vocalist Robert Plant for their untitled fourth studio album. The song is sometimes regarded as the most popular rock tune of all time: Wikipedia Thanks to Chili World – Music Led Zeppelin: Amazon US

“Good Vibrations” is a song by the American rock band the Beach Boys that was composed by Brian Wilson with lyrics by Mike Love. Released as a single on October 10, 1966, it was an immediate critical and commercial hit, topping record charts in several countries including the US and UK. Characterized by its complex soundscapes, episodic structure and subversions of pop music formula, it was the costliest single ever recorded at the time of its release. “Good Vibrations” later became widely acclaimed as one of the finest and most important works of the rock era: WikipediaThanks to Stephen McElvain

The Beach Boys Sounds of Summer: Amazon US

Thanks for tuning in this week.. William is on his summer break but will be back with a new series in September.. in the meantime we hope you will enjoy the summer of music.

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – The Music Column with William Price King – Meet Johnny Mathis –


Welcome to the first part of the Johnny Mathis series with a brief look at his early years and some of his awards and accolades.. His voice had a unique tone that is instantly recognisable and his songs certainly played a big role in my teen years and romantic dalliances..

I will hand over to William Price King now to introduce you to the early years of this enduring musical artist.

Johnny Mathis was born in 1935 in Gilmer in East Texas to Clement and Mildred Mathis. Interestingly for Eagles fans… Don Henley was also born in Gilmer. However, the family moved to San Francisco where his father continued to work in Vaudeville. His background exposed all the children in the family to music and spotting an early talent in Johnny, he bought him an old upright piano. The story is that it would not fit through the door so Clement dismantled it and then reassembled in their living room.

At first Johnny followed his father’s influence with songs and routines that were performed in front of family and friends. The first song that he mastered was “My Blue Heaven” and if you listen to this version by Fats Waller you can understand how it would have been a crowd pleaser for Johnny”s audiences.

Johnny Mathis made his first public appearances at church functions and he had this to say about the beginning of his career. “As a child all I knew was that people kept asking me to sing and because I liked to please I would sing. It wasn’t until my dad told me that my singing made him happy that I began to think my voice might be good.”

At age 13 he was lucky enough to be accepted by voice teacher Connie Cox, in exchange for chores, and he studied with her until he was 19 years old. His training which included voice production, classical and operatic singing and gave him an important advantage over many popular singers of the day. His inspirations evolved from the Vaudeville routines to the smoother crossover jazz vocalists of the 1940s such as Nat King Cole and Lena Horne. The first band that Johnny Mathis performed with was at high school under the leadership of Merl Saunders, who would himself go on to enjoy a long and successful career working with musicians such as Jerry Garcia (Grateful Dead) and Tom Fogerty.

Music was Johnny’s only talent and he excelled at athletics, particularly as a high jumper, hurdler and on the basketball team. He went to San Francisco State University on an athletic scholarship with the aim of becoming either a Physical Education or English Teacher. However, he began playing at a small local bar, The International Settlement, where he met Maya Angelou and Joan Weldon. This led to a jam session at the Black Hawk Club where Johnny attracted the attention of one of the club’s founders, Helen Noga, who became his music manager.

At age 20, Johnny Mathis was singing at the weekends at Ann Dee’s 440 Club, and on hearing that George Avakian, head of Popular Music A&R at Columbia Records, was vacationing nearby, Helen Noga persuaded him to come and listen to Johnny play. After hearing Mathis sing, Avakian sent his record company a telegram stating: “Have found phenomenal 19-year-old boy who could go all the way. Send blank contracts.” Mathis signed with Columbia but continued his studies at San Francisco State while plans were being made in New York for his debut album.

Back at San Francisco State, Mathis, a gifted athlete, set a high jump record of 6 feet, 5½ inches, only two inches shy of the Olympic record at the time. In 1956 he was asked to try out for the U.S. Olympic Team that would travel to Melbourne, Australia, that November. Mathis had to decide whether to go to the Olympic trials or to keep his appointment in New York City to make his first recordings. On his father’s advice, Mathis opted to embark on a professional singing career.

Over his long career Johnny Mathis has been asked to perform for many heads of state, including the President of Liberia, the British Royal Family and for President and Mrs. Reagan at a state dinner in honor of the Prime Minister of Japan. This was followed by performances for Presidents Bush and Clinton.

Apart from a four year break with Mercury records, Johnny Mathis has been with Columbia Records throughout his career, joining Bob Dylan and Barbra Streisand in that respect.

He has had five of his albums on the Billboard charts simultaneously, an achievement equaled by only two other singers: Frank Sinatra and Barry Manilow. He has released 200 singles and had 71 songs charted around the world. He is one of only five artistes who have had hits in every decade of their career.

He has taped twelve of his own television specials and made over 300 television guest appearances, with 33 of them being on “The Tonight Show.” Longtime “Tonight Show” host Johnny Carson said, “Johnny Mathis is the best ballad singer in the world.” He appeared on the show with Carson’s successor, Jay Leno, on March 29, 2007, to sing his song “The Shadow of Your Smile” with the saxophonist Dave Koz. Through the years, his songs (or parts of them) have been heard in 100 plus television shows and films around the globe. His appearance on the “Live by Request” broadcast in May 1998 on the A&E Network had the largest television viewing audience of the series. Also in 1989, Johnny sang the theme for the ABC daytime soap opera “Loving.”

Johnny Mathis has been inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame for three separate recordings – in 1998 for “Chances Are”, in 2002 for “Misty”, and in 2008 for “It’s Not for Me to Say.”

On June 21, 2014, Mathis was inducted into the Great American Songbook Hall Of Fame along with Linda Ronstadt, Shirley Jones, and Nat King Cole (his daughter Natalie Cole accepting the award on his behalf). The awards were presented by the Center for the Performing Arts artistic director Michael Feinstein. Defined on their website, “Conceived as an enduring testament to the Great American Songbook, the Hall of Fame honors performers and composers responsible for creating America’s soundtrack.”

In 1978 his hit duet with Jane Olivor “The Last Time I Felt Like This” from the film Same Time, Next Year was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Original Song. He was awarded the Society of Singers Lifetime Achievement Award in 2006 and he was inducted into the Hit Parade Hall of Fame.

In 2017, having dropped out of San Francisco State University over 60 years earlier to pursue his musical career, Johnny Mathis was awarded and honorary Doctor of Fine Arts from the university.

Johnny Mathis has supported many organizations through the years, including the American Cancer Society, the March of Dimes, the YWCA and YMCA, the Muscular Dystrophy Association and the NAACP.

Buy the music of Johnny Mathis: https://www.amazon.com/Johnny-Mathis/e/B000APEDOO

Find out more about Johnny Mathis and current news: http://www.johnnymathis.com/news.html

Additional sources: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Johnny_Mathis

My thanks to William Price King for another amazing post.

William Price King is an American jazz singer, crooner, and composer.

His interest in music began at an early age when he studied piano and clarinet in high school. At Morehouse College in Atlanta where he grew up, he sang in the Glee Club and studied classical music. After graduation he went off to the Yale School of Music where he earned a Masters degree. From there he journeyed to New York where he created a jazz trio ‘Au Naturel’ which performed in some of the hottest venues in Manhattan including gigs on Broadway and the famous ‘Rainbow Room.’ These gigs opened doors for performances in Montreal and a European tour.

While touring Europe he met a lovely French lady, Jeanne Maïstre, who, a year later became his wife. King left the group ‘Au Naturel’ and settled in the south of France where he started a new life on the French Riviera, opening his own music school – the “Price King Ecole Internationale de Chant.” He has had the pleasure over the years of seeing many of his students excel as singers on a professional level, and some going on to become national celebrities. He continues to coach young singers today, in his spare time.

His debut jazz album was entitled “Home,” and was a collection of contemporary compositions he composed, with lyrics written by his wife Jeanne King. His second album was a Duo (Voice and Guitar) with Eric Sempé on the guitar. This album included original songs as well as well known standards from contemporary jazz and pop artists. The “King-Sempé” duo toured France and thrilled audiences for more than three years before going their separate ways. King has formed a new duo called “Clear Cut,” and is now exploring new ideas, in a smooth jazz/soul/folk direction.

In addition to singing and composing, King has been collaborating with author Sally Cronin over the past few years on her blog “Smorgasbord – Variety is the spice of life,” with the series “A Man And His Music – Jazz, Contemporary, Classical, and Legends” and now, the “William Price King Music Column.” Working with author Sally Cronin has been an exhilarating experience in many ways and has brought a new dimension to King’s creative life. King has also created a micro blog, “Improvisation,” which features and introduces mostly jazz artists from across the jazz spectrum who have made considerable contributions in the world of jazz; and also artwork from painters who have made their mark in the world of art. This micro blog can be found on Tumblr.

His vocal mentors are two of the greatest giants in jazz, Nat King Cole and Mel Tormé. King has a distinctive wide-ranging voice which displays a remarkable technical facility and emotional depth.

William Price King on Tumblr – IMPROVISATION https://williampriceking.tumblr.com

Connect with William

Website – http://www.williampriceking.com/
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/WilliamPriceKing
Twitter – https://twitter.com/wpkofficial
Regular Venue – http://cave-wilson.com/
ITunes https://itunes.apple.com/us/artist/william-price-king/id788678484

You can find previous artists featured in these two links

Jazz, Classical and Contemporary: https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/william-price-king-a-man-and-his-music-jazz-contemporary-classical-and-legends/

And the Music Column: https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/william-price-king-music-column/

See you next week where William introduces us to the early hits for Johnny Mathis

An Evening with William Price King – Christmas Music – Sleigh Ride


My thanks to William Price King for  putting together this festive series for the run up to Christmas.. If you are lucky enough to live in the South of France; William is performing at a number of venues in the next couple of weeks. Contact William via his links for details.

Sleigh Ride was composed by Leroy Anderson as a light orchestral piece and was inspired by a particularly hot heat wave in July of 1946. By the time Leroy had finished the work it was in fact winter of 1948. The lyrics for the song were written in 1950 by Mitchell Parish.

Leroy Anderson recorded his own version in 1950 for Decca and it continued to be popular through the early part of the 50s.There were a number of versions that benefited from the addition of sound effects such as the clopping of horses hooves and even the sound of a horse whinnying.

There have been some notable versions of the song released over the years of this Christmas song including Johnny Mathis in 1958 and The Ronettes in 1963.

According to ASCAP, American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers, Sleigh Ride consistently ranks in the top 10 list of most performed songs during the Christmas season worldwide.

Here is a wonderful version by the incomparable Miss Ella Fitzgerald.

About William Price King

 williampriceking

About William Price King

William Price King is an American jazz singer, musician and composer. Originally he studied classical music and opera but over the years his style has evolved to what many refer to as the ‘sweet point’ where music and voice come together so beautifully.

His vocal mentors are two of the greatest giants in jazz, Nat King Cole and Mel Torme. His jazz album, ‘Home,’ is a collection of contemporary songs and whilst clearly a homage to their wonderful legacy it brings a new and refreshing complexity to the vocals that is entrancing.

His latest album Eric Sempe and William Price King is now available to download. The repertory includes standards such as “Bye Bye Blackbird” (a jazz classic), Sting’s “Englishman in New York,” Queen’s “The Show Must Go On”, Led Zepplin’s “Stairway to Heaven” and other well-known jazz, pop, and rock classics.

William and Eric Sempe have also brought their own magic to the album with original tracks such as Keep on Dreaming and Red Snow with collaboration with Jeanne King
Download the new album. http://cdbaby.com/cd/williampriceking

William is currently in France where he performs in popular Jazz Venues in Nice and surrounding area.

Connect to William

Website – http://www.williampriceking.com/
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/WilliamPriceKing
Twitter – @wpkofficial
Regular Venue – http://cave-wilson.com/
ITunes https://itunes.apple.com/us/artist/william-price-king/id788678484

You can find all of William’s posts on Jazz, Classical and Contemporary artists in this link: https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/william-price-king-a-man-and-his-music-jazz-classical-and-contemporary-legends/