Talented vocalist Dianña has made a couple of prior forays into the pop country arena and her latest “Missing You Underneath the Mistletoe” marks her first Christmas song. I am normally not much a fan of these types of songs, they tend to be calculated far more than other such material, but Dianña and producer/mixer Mark Needham, lauded for his work with artists such as Imagine Dragons and Dolly Parton, have put their hearts and their song-making skills into this work. It’s a marvelous confection.
Dianña is transforming into a steady presence on the Adult Contemporary and Country Charts; even a Christmas-themed tune will not change that. Her effortless delivery is not mannered at all. She communicates joy with every line of this performance and invites listeners to share in the love radiating from her in each line. I was a believer after her first entrance into the song. It isn’t another Christmas con but a real invocation of the seasonal spirit.
An outstanding video further completes the package. It was something else I was not completely sold by going into as the video for “Missing You Underneath the Mistletoe” smacks of a classic Hollywood production number about the season. Give it a chance, however, and the clip soon takes on another hue. The mix of different camera shots, the primacy of the singer in the video, and the lush textures. Director Fon Davis really works visual wonders with this clip that will find a lot of admirers.
There is a reason why these songs touch so many. It reminds us of the Christmas ideal or spirit that emphasizes a time of harmony and good will we aren’t fortunate enough to enjoy earlier in the year. We need musical moments like this more than ever as the world tumbles through one challenge after another because it underlines that love, not hate, is the underlying human condition to which we should cling. Let us hope each person who hears this song agrees and relishes the moment.
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I particularly like how Dianña and the production are in sync. She matches the swells of the song with her own orchestrated power. It never sounds predictable even if it is because listeners are drawn into the song’s emotional architecture using such techniques and skills. Dianña brings the full force of her talent to bear on this moment without ever overwhelming. A Christmas song as it should be and wonderfully envisioned from top to bottom.