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Author Topic: Christmas albums that are also really good music  (Read 764 times)
beatnickle
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« on: November 21, 2017, 07:05:07 AM »

I'll start with Herb Albert's new one called " A Christmas Wish" It's first class and jazzy and cool.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mdEuz-dNCd0
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KDS
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« Reply #1 on: November 21, 2017, 07:45:45 AM »

Released in 2006, I discovered them gem in 2014 - Blackmore's Night - Winter Carols.   I tend to run hot / cold on Ritchie Blackmore's renaissance / folk / rock band, but the sound fits Christmas music extremely well. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tb7COjA1Lm4

Of course, the Trans Siberian Orchestra is a great mix of traditional Christmas carols with original material in their fusion of classical, progressive rock, and heavy metal. 

Their 1996 album Christmas Eve and Other Stories is one of the most essential Christmas albums of all time IMO.
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« Reply #2 on: November 21, 2017, 11:37:46 AM »

I don't care if this costs me my cool points, but...

I really dig the Carpenter's Christmas Portrait. I've always been a huge mark for Karen's voice to begin with, and it's one of the few Christmas albums I can listen to at any point. Arrangements are pretty stellar as well.
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« Reply #3 on: November 21, 2017, 12:47:46 PM »

Vince Gueraldi - A Charlie Brown Christmas  Smiley
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KDS
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« Reply #4 on: November 21, 2017, 12:55:57 PM »

Vince Gueraldi - A Charlie Brown Christmas  Smiley


CLASSIC!! 
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« Reply #5 on: November 21, 2017, 01:00:18 PM »

Vince Gueraldi - A Charlie Brown Christmas  Smiley


Excellent choice
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« Reply #6 on: November 22, 2017, 06:04:27 AM »



Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer is the only Rankin Bass Christmas classic that has a companion album, and with good reason, as I think it's got the best soundtrack out of all of them (though I'd love to have a Year Without a Santa Claus album like this).
« Last Edit: November 22, 2017, 06:05:46 AM by KDS » Logged

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« Reply #7 on: November 22, 2017, 08:28:56 PM »

I don't care if this costs me my cool points, but...

I really dig the Carpenter's Christmas Portrait. I've always been a huge mark for Karen's voice to begin with, and it's one of the few Christmas albums I can listen to at any point. Arrangements are pretty stellar as well.
Hey, you have good taste! 3D Agree 100% about Karen's voice & the album. It's beautiful!

Vince Gueraldi - A Charlie Brown Christmas  Smiley
Boring beyond. KDS says it's "classic" - I'd like to hear why it is "classic". What's the ways to define Christmas albums as "classic"?
« Last Edit: November 22, 2017, 08:41:41 PM by RangeRoverA1 » Logged

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« Reply #8 on: November 22, 2017, 08:33:40 PM »

Vince Guaraldi - A Charlie Brown Christmas. One of the greats.

I would also say Atlas Eets Christmas by Imagene Peise (aka The Flaming Lips), Christmas Carols and Motets by the Tallis Scholars, and Fresh Aire Christmas among my faves.

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« Reply #9 on: November 22, 2017, 08:48:16 PM »

A Christmas Gift for You from Phil Spector
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« Reply #10 on: November 22, 2017, 08:59:13 PM »


Boring beyond. KDS says it's "classic" - I'd like to hear why it is "classic". What's the ways to define Christmas albums as "classic"?
[/quote]

It's been four times certified platinum and is one of the most popular christmas albums  in American music history, even after been first released 52 years ago, and was added to Congressional Library for it's historic importance and influence. I know it has been a gateway to Jazz for many people.
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KDS
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« Reply #11 on: November 23, 2017, 08:55:26 PM »

I don't care if this costs me my cool points, but...

I really dig the Carpenter's Christmas Portrait. I've always been a huge mark for Karen's voice to begin with, and it's one of the few Christmas albums I can listen to at any point. Arrangements are pretty stellar as well.
Hey, you have good taste! 3D Agree 100% about Karen's voice & the album. It's beautiful!

Vince Gueraldi - A Charlie Brown Christmas  Smiley
Boring beyond. KDS says it's "classic" - I'd like to hear why it is "classic". What's the ways to define Christmas albums as "classic"?

Well, its the soundtrack to possibly the most beloved Christmas Special of all time.  The song Linus and Lucy is an iconic and instantly recognizable piece of music. 

Just hearing the first few notes of Christmas Time is Here fills my heart full of joy and conjures up memories of childhood Christmases.
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« Reply #12 on: November 24, 2017, 06:37:31 AM »

That Carpenters Christmas stuff is spectacular.  Possibly the most beautiful Christmas album I've heard.  And, IIRC, it was somewhat patterned after a lesser-known LP by Spike Jones, which mixes sentiment with humor. That is also a favorite of mine.

Ringo has a great Christmas album as well, I Want to be Santa Claus.

I think they're called The Fab Four, they have a couple of Christmas CD's that sing Beatle songs as Christmas songs.  Pretty funny!
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« Reply #13 on: November 24, 2017, 01:50:51 PM »

That Carpenters Christmas stuff is spectacular.  Possibly the most beautiful Christmas album I've heard.  And, IIRC, it was somewhat patterned after a lesser-known LP by Spike Jones, which mixes sentiment with humor. That is also a favorite of mine.

Ringo has a great Christmas album as well, I Want to be Santa Claus.

I think they're called The Fab Four, they have a couple of Christmas CD's that sing Beatle songs as Christmas songs.  Pretty funny!

Yes, The Fab Four Christmas CDs are great. Im glad I got them when I did as they're out of print and can be quite expensive now. 
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« Reply #14 on: November 28, 2017, 05:29:03 AM »

Presley's first one is really good. The second is ok, except for the fabulous "Merry Christmas, baby".
Harry Belafonte cut a very interesting one in the late 50s iirc.
Also Johnny Cash's first Christmas album is nice.
Of course Dean Martin's Christmas recordings are great.

And apart from the Beach Boys, don't forget Brian's christmas album which imo has some very good performances on it.
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« Reply #15 on: November 28, 2017, 07:29:21 AM »

Presley's first one is really good. The second is ok, except for the fabulous "Merry Christmas, baby".
Harry Belafonte cut a very interesting one in the late 50s iirc.
Also Johnny Cash's first Christmas album is nice.
Of course Dean Martin's Christmas recordings are great.

And apart from the Beach Boys, don't forget Brian's christmas album which imo has some very good performances on it.

Many Elvis fans don't like it, so I guess I'm in a minority of Elvis fans, but I love his version of Winter Wonderland, especially the typical Elvis ending...ba ba ba ba I said a-walkin' in a WINTER wonderland (cue James Burton's awesome guitar).
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« Reply #16 on: November 28, 2017, 10:32:42 AM »

Presley's first one is really good. The second is ok, except for the fabulous "Merry Christmas, baby".
Harry Belafonte cut a very interesting one in the late 50s iirc.
Also Johnny Cash's first Christmas album is nice.
Of course Dean Martin's Christmas recordings are great.

And apart from the Beach Boys, don't forget Brian's christmas album which imo has some very good performances on it.

Many Elvis fans don't like it, so I guess I'm in a minority of Elvis fans, but I love his version of Winter Wonderland, especially the typical Elvis ending...ba ba ba ba I said a-walkin' in a WINTER wonderland (cue James Burton's awesome guitar).




Well, yeah. I used to like that as well. But it's not up to Presley standard imo.


There are also great Christmas recordings in Doo-wop and R'n'B. But I don't know about a specific album.
Fats Domino cut a Christmas album in the early 90s iirc. Very nice performances but the typical early 90s production isn't my cup of tea. Here's the whole thing:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_4HDfAXHDl4

Ray Charles had one in the 80s I believe. It has a very funky "Rudolph the red-nosed Reindeer" and some other cool selections.
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To sum it up, they blew it, they blew it consistently, they continue to blow it, it is tragic and this pathological problem caused The Beach Boys' greatest music to be so underrated by the general public.

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« Reply #17 on: November 28, 2017, 08:51:02 PM »

Christmas Caravan by Squirrel Nut Zippers is a fantastic album no matter what time of year. Tom Maxwell's song "Evergreen" from that album is one of the most beautiful songs ever written, IMO.
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« Reply #18 on: November 30, 2017, 03:58:36 PM »

The Roches Christmas album is amazing. Great harmonies.
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« Reply #19 on: December 12, 2017, 09:21:25 AM »

Oh and not to forgert: Booker T & The MG's "In the Christmas spirit" - fantastic album
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To sum it up, they blew it, they blew it consistently, they continue to blow it, it is tragic and this pathological problem caused The Beach Boys' greatest music to be so underrated by the general public.

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« Reply #20 on: January 11, 2018, 04:25:15 PM »

Check Spike Jones Presents Xmas Spectacular. It's jolly & fun.
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« Reply #21 on: January 11, 2018, 05:01:27 PM »

Yes, RR, the Spike Jones album is one I grew up with, way back in the late '50's.  Brings back lots of good memories, my kids (who are all now grown) all love it, too.
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« Reply #22 on: January 13, 2018, 04:12:37 AM »

Cool taste in music. :D If you liked his Christmas album, you may as well check the comp The Very Worst Of Spike Jones. Listening to Spike is akin to looking at caricatures. Cheesy Huge Spike Jones fan. 3D
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