Every year around this time, Donovan Farrell and a group of handpicked local musicians gather in secret to put together a holiday video. ” I chose this song because of how 2020 has been for so many. We’ve had so many challenges… so much loss… but with God’s grace and standing together we can get through anything. Though it is a traditional hymn “Amazing Grace” is not generally known as a Christmas song. God showed us “amazing grace” by sending his beloved son Jesus to save the world. Jesus was and is an inspiration for all as he went through so much for us. Giving and loving one another will hopefully be our greatest gift in the upcoming year,”, said Farrell.

This year joining Farrell were Tara Rae of Nightcap, Robbie Boothe of the Robbie Boothe Band, Wes Ryce, Phillip Michael Parsons, Donald Quade, LaKeisha Smith, Brandi Sydnor(Tell you Monday), and Catrina Vitez(on violin).

The video was shot by Conor Bullis and Ed Winson Delmoro of Wionson Media, with drone footage from Jonathan Powell of Open House Real Estate Media.

We asked a few of the artists what it is was like for them to part of this yearly tradition.

Donald Quade: Always a good time getting with this group. Something Donovan discussed with Wes, Lakeisha and Myself in I believe 2015 then Brandi came on and Robbie. We did Hallelujah. Every year I look forward to this 1. For seeing the group and more importantly knowing the people of southern Maryland have adopted us as their community group. A group without a name and comprised of individuals representing all of them. So many people send love and praise and look forward to this every year. Stop us on the street in the store and thank us. Knowing it means so much to them … makes it all worth it.

Donovan is the Santa the rest of us are the elves.

Robbie Boothe: It’s always humbling to be asked to be apart of this with so many amazing musicians. Each of their talents shine in so many ways. Donovan puts a CRAZY amount of hours in to this every year and deserves the recognition and thanks for all of it! 2020 has been one that we all wish we could forget but to be able to come together and pull this video off, I think it sheds a light on what’s to come in 2021.. amazing things!

Donovan Farrell: As always, getting together with my amazingly talented musician friends was a joy and I love nothing more than showing off our BEAUTIFUL Southern Maryland. I love supporting our local businesses and churches and hope everyone can get some joy out of these. I love our Southern Maryland community so much! I’m so proud to be born and raised here and to call this beautiful place home. All of our love and blessing to all! Thanks for the continued support!

Phillip Michael Parsons: I think it’s one of the best we’ve done, if not the best.  I have so much pride and love for my fellow SoMD musicians and all I ever wanted was to be mentioned among them so it’s always an honor to do these videos with them every year.

Tara Rae: It’s always great when all of us can get together and do something for the community, and this year was no exception. With everything this year has brought, an uplifting song seemed to be the right choice. I appreciate being involved in every collab, and I’m glad were able to make it work this year even with the distancing.

Brandi Sydnor:  I am so blessed to be a part of this video every year. Donovan does an amazing job bringing us all together to do this. Everyone in the video and behind the scenes is so talented and I look forward to seeing them each year to record.

Wes Ryce: I think Donovan nailed it with his choice this year. With the debacle of 2020, the best approach is with positivity, faith, and hope. Amazing Grace is exactly that. I love this group and look forward to this yearly project. Somehow, even after being a lifelong SoMD resident, these videos have sent me to new locations. I was lucky enough this year that Gerrie & Fawn allowed Donald & I to shoot at Shepherd’s market in Leonardtown. I feel it’s a SoMD hidden treasure and I hope we can help send business their way to keep our local economy thriving. I sincerely thank everyone for watching, listening, and sharing. More importantly, it means a lot to us when people start asking before Thanksgiving if there will be a video. In an age where everything you want is at your fingertips, it’s nice to know so many are thinking ahead and are excited for these productions.

LaKiesha Smith: It is always a pleasure being a part of this collaboration. This is my 5th year performing with the majority of the group. This group is so unique because we all have a diverse background in music and we all bring something different to the table. Our voices are so distinctively unique and together we create masterpieces.

This year was a little different due to COVID rules; nevertheless, we still had a blast recording and filming. When we all get together, we always have so much fun and you’re guaranteed to get a good laugh in. I have to say none of this would be possible without Donovan, he’s amazing and so creative. I cannot thank him enough for his vision back in 2015 and for asking me to be a part of it. I look forward to our yearly Christmas projects and creating new ones, all while giving back to our community. I have gained so many new fans and new friends over the years. It warms my heart to receive a personal message from complete strangers thanking me for sharing my gift. Thank you to everyone for listening and sharing our videos, it means so much to us all. Happy Holidays to each and every one of you.

Some of the past Holiday videos have been:

Editing and color correction by:
Ed Winson Delmoro from Winson Media

Donovan Farrell
Piano, Violin, and Organ recorded by:
Rosemary Siemens

Mixed and mastered by:
Robby Wilson

Extra special thanks to:
Lower Notley Hall Farm Wedding Venue
(301) 769-2030
Port of Leonardtown Winery
(301) 690-2192
Shepherd’s Old Field Market
(240) 309-4067
Our Lady of the Wayside Church
(301) 884-2502
Calvert Marine Museum
(410) 326-2042
Town of Leonardtown
(301) 475-9791
Leonardtown Volunteer Fire Department
(301) 475-8996
Jack Nutter from Nutter Photography

For a FREE download of this song please visit https://donovanfarrell.com/

David M. Higgins II, Publisher/Editor

David M. Higgins was born in Baltimore and grew up in Southern Maryland. He has had a passion for journalism since high school. After spending many years in the Hospitality Industry he began working in...

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