SANTA MONICA, Calif., Nov. 22, 2010 /PRNewswire/ -- Grammy-winning singer/songwriter Jason Mraz is the latest in a stellar group of recording artists who have contributed a track to the A Very Special Christmas holiday music series benefiting Special Olympics, the world's largest movement dedicated to fostering the acceptance and inclusion of people with intellectual disabilities. His recording of "Winter Wonderland" will be available on iTunes for the first time in the U.S. starting TODAY. The track will also be offered as a bonus to the purchase of 2009's acclaimed A Very Special Christmas Volume 7, featuring young superstars Colbie Caillat, Carter Twins, Charice, Miley Cyrus, Kristinia DeBarge, Gloriana, Vanessa Hudgens, Sean Kingston, Leighton Meester, Mitchel Musso, Kellie Pickler, Ashley Tisdale and Carrie Underwood.
Mraz, who grew up listening to classic Christmas recordings by Bing Crosby, Perry Como and the like, remembers the A Very Special Christmas series. "I noticed the Keith Haring album covers when I first started buying cds, and I had them in my collection. Wanting to be an artist that contributes, I was touched that I was asked to take part.
"For me Special Olympics is about embracing the abilities that we do have," he explained. "It's the same thing I do with my concerts. I just want to shift the attention back to love and joy and happiness in this now moment, and I really get that Special Olympics does that same thing."
"We are so grateful to the many artists who have contributed to the success of this A Very Special Christmas series," shared Tim Shriver, Special Olympics Chairman and CEO. "Not only has this music brought joy to the many listeners and fans, but it has brought hope to millions of athletes with intellectual disabilities throughout the world by providing them sports opportunities they never would have imagined."
Launched in 1987, the A Very Special Christmas series has featured recordings of holiday music by some of the most influential and talented artists of the time including U2, Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band, Madonna, Sting, Bon Jovi, Reba McIntyre, Sheryl Crow, Mary J. Blige, Eric Clapton and Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. Last year, the torch was passed to a new generation of superstar talent who contributed to A Very Special Christmas Volume 7, the latest edition of the acclaimed album series.
Selling one million copies in its first year, the premier album, A Very Special Christmas, and the subsequent albums in the series, have generated more than $l00 million for Special Olympics, the most ever raised by a benefit recording series. Disbursed in grants by the Special Olympics Christmas Records Trust, the monies raised each year by the albums/CDs/DVDs play a crucial role in the lives of the least-advantaged Special Olympics athletes in countries around the world where there are inaccurate and prejudiced views about people with intellectual disabilities.
For more information on Special Olympics, go to www.specialolympics.org. For more info on the album series, visit www.veryspecialchristmas.org. For information on the Special Olympics Christmas Trust: AVSC Records Trust Report.
SOURCE Special Olympics