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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - Former Albuquerque radio personality and professional voice talent Jeff Gelder, founder of San Diego-based GelderHead Productions, is seeking local musicians, local enthusiasm and local donations for an annual holiday story and music CD he produces and sends free of charge to children's hospitals in eight cities, including Albuquerque.
Now a San Diego resident, Gelder sent 210 copies of "Holiday Magic 2008, A Gift for Children of All Ages" to the University of New Mexico Children's Hospital this holiday season.
"This is a labor of love that is received with much joy by children who are, unfortunately, spending the holiday season in the hospital," Gelder said.
In addition to providing the holiday CDs to the San Diego Children's Hospital, he also is sending them to Houston, New York City, Miami, New Orleans, Milwaukee, and Orange County, as well as Albuquerque. So far, he has sent a total of 1,500 CDs out this holiday season, and would like to send even more next year.
"My goal is to get each city more involved, raise funds and get local talent participating by contributing songs, so it becomes a localized project," Gelder explained.
Creating and distributing the holiday CDs has been ongoing for six years. Gelder has sent CDs to Albuquerque for the past two years.
He launched his radio broadcasting career in Albuquerque when broadcast veteran Steve Stucker hired him for station Q106 FM in 1983.
Gelder has been Summit Electric Supply's voice talent for audio marketing messages, corporate videos, voice-mail messages and more since 2002. Summit's vice president of marketing, Sheila Hernandez, will give 30 of the holiday CDs to Carrie Tingley Hospital.
"My 9-year-old daughter Johanna enjoys Jeff's holiday CDs all year," Hernandez said. "I know the children at Carrie Tingley will really enjoy them too."
In addition to soliciting local musicians from each market to contribute songs, Gelder has attracted professional talent to the project, including: award winning actress and author Vanna Bonta, actress Nichelle Nichols (who played Lt. Uhura of Star Trek), voice actors Greg Dehm and Heather Martinez, recording artists James Higgins, Evan Brau, Elliot Kidd, Janet Hammer's Full Measure Carolers, Audio Girl Productions, and more.
Microsoft manager and writer Mark Patterson wrote the story script.
This year's holiday CD can be reviewed at www.holidaymagiccd.com. Gelder is actively seeking musical talent and donations already for next year's production. Each year a new story is featured, told in parts separated by several songs.
Gelder's company has attracted national and international clients like Toyota, Toshiba, and Cablevision. He recently narrated for ESPN, Discovery Networks and Elsevier Publishing. (See www.gelderhead.com.)
Gelder will be in Albuquerque Dec. 19-26 visiting family and promoting this community goodwill project. He will be available for interviews.