Holiday songs don’t get much more wondrous than “The Hallelujah Chorus” from Handel’s Messiah, sung a cappella, in glorious, almost daring three-part harmony, by The Roches.
Sisters Maggie, Terre and Suzzy Roche — originally from Park Ridge, or “deepest New Jersey,” as they described it in their autobiographical song, “We” — included “The Hallelujah Chorus” on their 1982 album Keep on Doing, though they had been performing it for years previously. (They also indulged their love of seasonal material on their 1990 Christmas album, We Three Kings).
Check out a great performance of it — and Terre’s superhuman high notes, in particular — in the 1978 clip from the Capitol Theatre in Passaic, below.
New Jersey celebrated its 350th birthday from Sept. 2014 to Sept. 2015. And in the 350 Jersey Songs series, we marked the occasion by posting 350 songs — one a day, for almost a year — that have something to do with the state, its musical history, or both. The complete list is here.