New girl group in Utah releasing Xmas CD to raise money for cancer research
Published: December 3, 2012 12:08PM
Updated: December 3, 2012 12:08PM

“A Gift of Christmas,” the Starbright Trio’s debut album, celebrates the season with classic holiday songs and one new composition by Salt Lake musician-composer Robert Peterson.

The trio’s members—Katie Johnston, Christiana Pinborough and Camille Smith—have teamed with several Utah-based musicians (including Lysa Rytting, Daron Bradford, Ray Smith and Peterson) to produce the 14-song collection.

“A Gift of Christmas” can be purchased through the website, www.starbrighttrio.com. Cost for the album, including shipping and handling, is $14 (Utah residents will also be charged sales tax).

Johnston, Pinborough and Smith are long-time friends, with relationships dating back to grade school and high school. At the time of the recording in 2011, Johnston was a senior at Washington University in St. Louis, Pinborough was graduating from Brigham Young University, and Smith was completing entrance requirements for graduate school at the University of Utah.

“A Gift of Christmas” was the brainchild of Johnston’s father, Dr. Mark Johnston. Iin addition to being a physician, Johnston is a classical and jazz musician with 40 years of performing and with experience in studio recording. He said in a press release, “I had attended Camille’s mother’s funeral, and was moved by a family performance. I thought that an album by the three friends could be more than just fun—it could be used to raise money for cancer research.”

Smith’s mother, Ann Marie Smith, was diagnosed with Stage IV colon cancer in December 2008 and passed away in December 2009.

“A Gift of Christmas” is dedicated to her memory, and $4 for each album sold is being donated to the American Cancer Society.