Ashliegh Still, a much sought after a Minneapolis singer is often referred to as "the Eva Cassidy of Minnesota." Her soul and stunning voice comes from a deep place informed by her hardscrabble experience as a gospel-trained, minister's daughter and now single mother of two. And although her publicity photos could grace the cover of "Bust" or "Glamour," etc., beyond her outer beauty is the wisdom that comes from the day- to-day struggle of making a living for her and her kids. There is an inner flame that burns brightly and has something to say; something about what it's like to be a woman trying to dig out from the conformity of society, religion, and family. In that sense, Ashleigh also reminds us of Anne Sexton and Billie Holiday.
ABOUT THE COMPOSER
David Rasche is an award winning actor and writer, who began his career at Chicago's celebrated Second City, where he worked with such notables as John Candy, Bill Murray and Gilda Radner. He is perhaps best known on TV for playing the dizzy, gun-happy detective on "Sledge Hammer!" in the late 1980s, but has also appeared on "Miami Vice", "Monk" and other shows. Rasche has appeared on and off-Broadway in countless plays by everyone from David Mamet to Shakespeare, and in the movies, you might remember him in the Coen Brothers' "Burn After Reading," or in "Delirious" with John Candy, "The Sentinel" with Michael Douglas, "That Old Feeling" with Bette Midler, "Just Married" with Ashton Kutcher, or "In the Loop" with James Gandolfini. Rasche has written many songs, including "I Wish i Was Married to Your Wife," "Turn on the Stars" and "I Love Golf."
David Rasche, a reluctant California transplant from New York, who had spent several Christmases with his family in Los Angeles, had moved to Santa Barbara. One night shortly after the move, David couldn't sleep -- it was in December and thoughts of Christmas were drifting through his head as he sat at the piano, looking for something. He was thinking about Mel Torme and about "chestnuts roasting on an open fire," and the picture of Christmas that Torme painted. One of the best Christmas songs ever written. Interestingly, it made David think of those early Christmases he had spent in LA when he and his family had just moved to LA, and how California just didn't seem like Christmas. He yearned for a Christmas like those he had spent as a child in Illinois, and he started to connect the opposites, the hot winds blowing instead of the cold that 'nips your nose,' or driving the freeway instead of going "over the river and through the woods." But as night wore on and the ideas started to form, what began as a sort of complaint changed as it became clear that the true meaning of Christmas had nothing to do with the externals. Christmas is in our hearts, and the spirit of Christmas brings us all together, wherever in the world we are, and 'Christmas in LA" was born.
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