The man behind Mannheim Steamroller won’t be touring with the popular music group this year for the first time in decades. Chip Davis, the Omaha musician who founded the band, is out of commission for a while as he’s recovering from an operation.

“I had neck surgery and had virtually half of my neck rebuilt and I’ve lost quite a bit of the use of my right arm and can’t play the keyboards or play drums,” Davis says. He says it’s been many Christmases since he hasn’t been on the road, taking his unique style of holiday music to the masses.

“I should be back up and running by next year but I won’t be actually going out personally on the tours for the first time in 30 years,” Davis says. Mannheim Steamroller is the biggest-selling Christmas artist of all time, with more than 30-million albums and CDs sold.

Since the demand for Christmas concerts is overwhelming, Davis says they’ve added a new element to their production this year. Davis says: “We have got two companies of Mannheim Steamroller now. We have the original company and students of the original band. They are playing on the East Coast and then the original band will be coming up through the Midwest.”

That original band is going to play in Des Moines on December 12th and 13th, and Omaha on December 22nd and 23rd. Davis is also known for having co-wrote and produced the 1975 hit song “Convoy” by C.W. McCall, a fictional semi driver from western Iowa.

That song sold ten-million copies and Davis used his cut to bankroll the new band, Mannheim Steamroller. For more details, see the band’s website .

AUDIO: Radio Iowa’s Matt Kelley reports Manheim Steamroller. :46 MP3