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Poll
Question: Rate The Beach Boys Christmas Album
5 - 12 (17.1%)
4 - 25 (35.7%)
3 - 23 (32.9%)
2 - 10 (14.3%)
1 - 0 (0%)
0 - 0 (0%)
Total Voters: 66

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Author Topic: The Beach Boys' Christmas Album  (Read 16499 times)
grillo
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« Reply #25 on: November 28, 2008, 11:02:04 PM »

  Little Saint Nick was great as a single, but for some reason they put an odd version on here without the sleigh bells and glock... The rest of the first side is quite good, except for Merry Christmas Baby which I'm not a big fan of.


I really like MCB. It has a great little melody. I think the Boys Next Door rip it off for one of their singles. But you're right about the crappy version of LSN. We were listening to the album earlier and I'd forgotten how lame that particular mix was. Still, a great record. Way better than the 4 seasons x-mas album!
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« Reply #26 on: June 06, 2009, 07:23:10 PM »

I feel like I'm bringing up ancient threads each time it tells me that the thread hasn't been posted to for at least 120 days. LOL

I try to like this album a lot, but as some others have said, it seems a bit rushed and as if they didn't put a ton of work into it. The highlights are high, but there is a lot of average work. I gave it a 3...if the single version of LSN was on here, it'd be closer to a 4.

Apparently, Dick Reynolds of the Four Freshmen arrange most of the traditional instrumental arrangements.

3/5 Little Saint Nick (love the single version much better)
4/5 Man with all the Toys
4/5 Santa's Beard
3/5 Merry Christmas Baby
3/5 Christmas Day
3/5 Frosty the Snowman
5/5 We Three Kings (instr. arrangement and vocals are great)
4/5 Blue Christmas (Brian on perfect pitch)
3/5 White Christmas
3/5 I'll Be Home for Christmas
3/5 Auld Lang Syne (vocals are very good, but Denny's flub and the editing isn't that good)
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Poprocks
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« Reply #27 on: November 26, 2009, 05:15:42 PM »

Ah... as late November/early December rolls around, it's time to pull out the Christmas music.  Obviously this is an album I play a lot of at this time of year :-) I mostly stand by what I said last year, but I like Merry Christmas Baby more than I used to now.  The middle-8 is rather dull, but the rest is decent.

Couple of comments/questions I didn't post at this time last year:

- First off, why the hell couldn't Brian write ONE more original song for the first side?  Then that way, it would be all one side with the new songs, and another side with the classic favourites.
- I've read that Christmas Day (a favourite of mine) was about 10 seconds shorter than the stereo version I'm used to.  Can anyone tell me the difference?  I haven't been able to get my hands on the mono version.
- Speaking of Christmas Day, has anyone heard the boot where Brian calls it a "f**king piece of sh*t"?  If so, could anyone give me any "hints" on how I could track it down?
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Spencer
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« Reply #28 on: December 03, 2009, 03:18:55 AM »

I havne't heard the expletive version but I do liek this album
Little Saint Nick Single version ig great- really happy and I love the harmonies on The man with all the toys and santa beard and I think it's Blue Christmas or White christmas where the cello's do a Gershwin nod- I've only discovered that this year (maybe it's obvious though). Santa's Got An Airplane is an improvement on the non christmas song because the lyrics suit the sentiment of the music (and I also like it that santa on the ultimate version of the album updates his vehicle from some sort of motorised sled on little saint nick to an aeroplane). Morning Christmas is something else entirely it made me get up and put it on again after it had finished the other day- what a song.
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Mr. Cohen
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« Reply #29 on: December 16, 2009, 05:30:27 PM »

On the topic of Christmas BBs album, I was listening to the BBs Christmas Harmonies collection on lala.com, and I don't what the compilers where thinking when they put this together. The first 6-7 tracks are from the original BBs Christmas album, presented out of order, but it has the same vibe. Then, out of left field, comes "Child of Winter"! I like that song, but the crazy synths and bizarre voice-over from Brian must have casual listeners who wanted that traditional BBs Christmas vibe scrambling for their CD cases to see if it's the same group. Then, later, some genius, probably Mike Love, decided that "Melekalikimaka" should be on the CD, picking it over songs like "Christmas Morning" (the beautiful Dennis track) and "Winter Symphony" (a pretty good song)! After that is "(I Saw Santa) Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree", a very average song that I would again have preferred to be replaced by the previous two songs I mentioned. Then, it's back the original BBs Christmas album vibe. Why, oh Lord, why?
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Chris Brown
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« Reply #30 on: December 16, 2009, 11:45:46 PM »

I've been listening to this a lot the last few weeks, and I still enjoy it as much as I did in previous years.  The first side gets a bit repetitive, but overall the songs are fun and have a good sound.  "Little Saint Nick" is obviously a classic (although I prefer the single version), and I enjoy "Santa's Beard" and "Merry Christmas Baby" too.  "The Man With All The Toys" is good, but I think Brian's version from his Christmas album is better (it actually sounds finished).  "Christmas Day" is the only track on side one that I'm not crazy about.  Al's voice is dull, and the song really doesn't go anywhere.

Side two is an odd paradox, in that it has the usual great Beach Boys vocals, but with very old-school, sometimes cheesy instrumental arrangements.  Some of them fit well ("Blue Christmas," "We Three Kings," "I'll Be Home For Christmas"), some not so well ("Frosty the Snowman", "Santa Claus Is Coming To Town"), but the vocals are always first rate.  The highlight for me is Brian's rendition of "Blue Christmas."  I absolutely detest Elvis' version, and it wasn't until I heard Brian's that I realized that I actually liked the song itself.  The vocals on "I'll Be Home For Christmas" are quite stunning, and very Freshman-like (not an accident, obviously).  "Auld Lang Sine" is a strong closer, with Brian's great vocal arrangement and Denny's message a-la Spector's Christmas album.

Despite a few weak tracks, there are a lot of classics on this one, which is probably why I can pull it out year after year (and sometimes even during the summer months) and still enjoy it immensely.
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DefMode66
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« Reply #31 on: February 14, 2010, 09:28:41 AM »

The Christmas Album of '64 contained a great mixture of Beach Boys songs and traditional songs. Brian sang awesome leads on Blue and White Christmas. It plays in our house every holiday and stands the test of time every year. 
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Nicko
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« Reply #32 on: February 28, 2010, 02:48:27 AM »

An album that hangs together better than some of the group's other early efforts and one that has stood the test of time well.

I like all of the originals (although I agree that the single version of Little Saint Nick is superior) and Santa's Beard is one of the cutest songs that the band ever attempted.

The covers are all well sung and We Three Kings is outstanding. Some of the Dick Reynolds arrangements are very un-Beach Boys though and aren't to my taste.

On the whole, 3 out of 5.
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FatherOfTheMan Sr101
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« Reply #33 on: October 23, 2011, 11:26:40 AM »

5.

I'm getting ready for Christmas, and the SMiLE Sessions, Popped this on the Turntable, WTK is freaking incredible, just that is good enough for a 5
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« Reply #34 on: October 23, 2011, 12:47:25 PM »

Its rare enough for an artist to score one Christmas song that becomes a classic. The fact that the BB recorded an entire album of them is astounding. it's even rarer a feat to actually WRITE a Christmas classic but here you have Brian, Mike and whoever else able to write half an albums worth!

5/5 with no reservation.
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drbeachboy
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« Reply #35 on: November 22, 2011, 07:19:05 AM »

Alright, I am gointg to ask this question here to see if anyone knows the answer. What is the consenus regarding the the mono tracks on the 1991 CD release of this album; are they remixed mono or fold downs of the stereo mix? Supposedly, this "1991 Remix" is what is being used on the 2011 release. Also, has the mono LP version of Little Saint Nick ever been released on CD? Steve Hoffman says yes, but I am very skeptical of this claim.  
« Last Edit: November 23, 2011, 07:48:51 AM by drbeachboy » Logged

The Brianista Prayer

Oh Brian
Thou Art In Hawthorne,
Harmonied Be Thy name
Your Kingdom Come,
Your Steak Well Done,
On Stage As It Is In Studio,
Give Us This Day, Our Shortenin' Bread
And Forgive Us Our Bootlegs,
As We Also Have Forgiven Our Wife And Managers,
And Lead Us Not Into Kokomo,
But Deliver Us From Mike Love.
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« Reply #36 on: November 23, 2011, 06:20:34 AM »

Need to buy this for the holiday season.
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I don't see the point in punishing Brian's musical output solely because Mike wants to wow the President Elect with how long he can weeze "wheeeeeeen" into a microphone.- rab2591
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« Reply #37 on: December 18, 2011, 07:01:42 PM »

I rather like Merry Christmas baby for some reason.  Nice melody to it. 
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« Reply #38 on: March 25, 2012, 05:25:21 AM »

LOVE the first four tracks (and personally i prefer Little Saint Nick minus the sleighbells) and We Three Kings - not so keen on the rest. Would love to hear the album out-takes - apparently Brian describes the track Chrismas Day in less than flattering terms...
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« Reply #39 on: October 04, 2012, 06:36:29 PM »

Holy god. I had heard the more well known songs from this album, but I just listened to We Three Kings for the first time and wow..... Brian's harmony is just mind blowing on this. Best rendition of that song ever!
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« Reply #40 on: October 12, 2012, 07:07:30 AM »

Just dusted it off for this year's christmas season (plus Ultimate Christmas). I keep forgetting about what a stunning christmas album this is... that's why I hastily arranged a mid-december listening party at my place - featuring The Beach Boys' Christmas Album and a few gallons of German Glühwein.  3D
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« Reply #41 on: November 26, 2012, 04:09:07 PM »

I posted a commentary on the Beach Boys Christmas album - FYI - Comments (and better insights) welcomed,

Phil
http://prayforsurfblog.blogspot.com/2012/11/the-beach-boys-all-in-family-album.html

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« Reply #42 on: December 03, 2012, 12:23:34 PM »

surprised there aren't more comments on the 70s tracks... is there another thread for those? In any event, I had great memories of the 64 album listening to it when I was a kid, but in relistening to it as an adult, I was underwhelmed. But it's still great, and my 3 and 6 year olds love it (of course, they love anything Beach Boys, God bless 'em).

The 70s tracks I find really interesting. Child of Winter is AWESOME, along with Christmas Time is Here Again, Winter Symphony, and Morning Christmas (one of the few Dennis tracks that I really like). The other 4 70s tracks are pretty bad, but I'm glad they were released.
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Amanda Hart
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« Reply #43 on: December 06, 2012, 12:36:07 PM »

Although I love the vocals and think this may be some of the best singing the group ever did, I was never too high on the Christmas album. I'm not really a Christmas music fan, so it just didn't really do it for me. I'm changing my tune this year, though. I did all my Christmas shopping on Black Friday and came home feeling good about being done but stressed about money. I put on The Beach Boys' Christmas Album while I was working around the house and it made me feel like 1000x better. It's so joyful. I ended up listening to it a couple of time in a row because I was really into it. I already gave the album a 3 in this poll, probably 4 or 5 years ago, but it's really great for what it is and if I could I would probably bump it up to a 4 now.
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PrayForSurf
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« Reply #44 on: December 06, 2012, 12:54:53 PM »

Jeffrey Foskett's Christmas At The Beach has been the first Christmas album I've palyed the past few years. For me, a perfect combination of Beach Boys-type tunes and don't forget Jesus songs.

Phil
http://prayforsurfblog.blogspot.com/2012/11/the-beach-boys-all-in-family-album.html
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« Reply #45 on: December 06, 2012, 12:57:27 PM »


Agree with you re COW & Winter Symphony, CTIHA is also quite good. But the last, Morning Christmas, is too slow, downbeat & uninspiring, it doesn't sound like Happy Christmas-type tune. And usually that's what I like about Christmas songs, i.e. joyfulness, warmth & feel of holiday & magic. Tastes differ though.   

It's not supposed to be a bouncing joyful tune. It's exudes a feeling of sacred frailty, which is exactly what Dennis was going for and he accomplished that perfectly.
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drbeachboy
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« Reply #46 on: December 06, 2012, 01:23:33 PM »


Agree with you re COW & Winter Symphony, CTIHA is also quite good. But the last, Morning Christmas, is too slow, downbeat & uninspiring, it doesn't sound like Happy Christmas-type tune. And usually that's what I like about Christmas songs, i.e. joyfulness, warmth & feel of holiday & magic. Tastes differ though.   

It's not supposed to be a bouncing joyful tune. It's exudes a feeling of sacred frailty, which is exactly what Dennis was going for and he accomplished that perfectly.
Exactly! If you listen to the ending it slides right into Cantique de Noel; a most sacred Christmas carol. Morning Christmas is a very beautiful and moving Christmas song.
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The Brianista Prayer

Oh Brian
Thou Art In Hawthorne,
Harmonied Be Thy name
Your Kingdom Come,
Your Steak Well Done,
On Stage As It Is In Studio,
Give Us This Day, Our Shortenin' Bread
And Forgive Us Our Bootlegs,
As We Also Have Forgiven Our Wife And Managers,
And Lead Us Not Into Kokomo,
But Deliver Us From Mike Love.
Amen.  ---hypehat
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« Reply #47 on: December 15, 2012, 12:13:21 PM »


Agree with you re COW & Winter Symphony, CTIHA is also quite good. But the last, Morning Christmas, is too slow, downbeat & uninspiring, it doesn't sound like Happy Christmas-type tune. And usually that's what I like about Christmas songs, i.e. joyfulness, warmth & feel of holiday & magic. Tastes differ though.   

It's not supposed to be a bouncing joyful tune. It's exudes a feeling of sacred frailty, which is exactly what Dennis was going for and he accomplished that perfectly.

You're right. They're wrong. I find that often when people give reasons for not liking any particular song of Dennis' they always seem to have entirely, completely and utterly missed the point of what the song was trying to achieve in the first place, as indeed the critisisms of Morning Christmas do above. No, i'm not saying people aren't allowed to not like Dennis' songs - if you don't like 'em fair enough - but dislike them for sensible reasons at least.
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PrayForSurf
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« Reply #48 on: December 15, 2012, 01:41:08 PM »

RE: Agree with you re COW & Winter Symphony, CTIHA is also quite good. But the last, Morning Christmas, is too slow, downbeat & uninspiring, it doesn't sound like Happy Christmas-type tune. And usually that's what I like about Christmas songs, i.e. joyfulness, warmth & feel of holiday & magic. Tastes differ though.   
 - - - - - - -

The original Christmas brought much joy but also had more moments of awe and wonder, pain (riding 9 months pregnant on a donkey) and suffering (giving birth in a cold cave) ... not long after followed by a King's decree to slaughter Bethlehem infants in an attempt to eliminate what he thought would be his competition. I love the joy-to-the-world songs (and appreciate Brian's juxtaposition of "let every heart prepare him room" on his cover of the Beach Boys' "Man With All The Toys") but welcome the reflection of those slow, downbeat songs that remind me of why Christmas means so much to so many.

Phil

A very different perspective on the Christmas Album ~ http://prayforsurfblog.blogspot.com/2012/11/the-Beach-Boys-All-In-Family-Album.html
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« Reply #49 on: September 08, 2013, 04:16:48 PM »

Not a bad album, although forgetful.
Santa's Beard was a surprising highlight, and once I listened to the whole song, I concluded that it was a highly underrated gem.
3 out of 5.
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