Whitewater man shares love of music, season


(Published Wednesday, December 24, 2003 10:03:40 AM CST)
By Carla McCann/Gazette Staff
Steve Meisner


WHITEWATER-Steve Meisner began working on his Christmas gift to the world about five years ago.

At times, it seemed like the project was taking forever to finish.

But the 42-year-old Whitewater musician and songwriter didn't give up. This gift had to be special. It needed to inspire love, kindness and sharing, Meisner said.

"To me, music is one of this world's greatest gifts, and with the exception of my loved ones, it is my life energy," he said.

He called on family and friends to share their musical talents in helping record and produce his latest CD titled "Forever Christmas." And now, the holiday gift finally is unwrapped.

Meisner recently released his newest CD that blends a variety of tempos and styles into 19 songs.

"This kind of recording afforded me the opportunity to work with different family members and different types of music," Meisner said.

Every one of the songs on the CD has a different tempo, meter and style, Meisner said.

It's not uncommon for even big-name recording artists to release songs that vary little in their musical arrangements, Meisner said.

"After you've heard four to six of those songs, you pretty much can tell what all of the other songs on the recording are going to be like," Meisner said.

"Forever Christmas" will surprise listeners, Meisner said.

"We've designed this recording to keep listeners' attention from the beginning to the end," he added.

The CD includes a guest performance by Meisner's three children and his father, Vern, singing "Caroling on Christmas Eve."

Vern originally recorded the song in the mid-1960s, Meisner said.

"It only was on a 45," Meisner said. "I re-recorded it. This is the first time that a Meisner recording has featured three generations in song."

The other Meisner stars are: Austin, 11; Lindsey, 16; and Whitney, 17.

The CD also features a song called "When Angels Dance," which Meisner wrote for Lindsey, he said.

"She used to dance around the house like a ballerina," Meisner said.

Whitney also co-wrote the title track for the CD, he said.

Literature is Whitney's forte, Meisner said.

When Meisner isn't at home with his wife, Barbara, and their children, he is touring with the Steve Meisner Band.

He has a busy on-the-road schedule.

Meisner and his four-member band annually perform at 200 or more places and events.

He also has performed in two movies.

"Chump Change" was filmed in Milwaukee and recently was released by Miramax. It will come out on DVDs in January, Meisner said.

The other film was called "The Pickup Polka." Chris Collins of Madison wrote and directed it.

Although Meisner has many accolades to his credit, he is excited about the recent CD that presents a melodic joy of sharing the creation of music with family and friends.

"I have been afforded the opportunity to take my creations and holiday classics and turn them into a gift of a variety of holiday spirited and seasonal selections in such a way that I can communicate what 'Forever Christmas' means to me," Meisner said.

"This is a testament to the fact that although Christmas only comes but once a year, our acts of love, kindness and sharing are 'Forever Christmas.'"