Christmas Music

Always looking for recommendations, I will give a couple.

The Gold Standard: Cantate Domino, Proprius
***one of the absolute favorites in the entire collection***

Also check out the sampler "Christmas Gift" from Dorian 90008. Excellently recorded and a variety sure to please someone. Very inexpensive direct from label. (Get a few of their other samplers and treat yourself if you are unfamiliar with this label.)

Vince Guaraldi Trio, A Charlie Brown Christmas, Fantasy

Lots more, but I will let others pile on the list.

Happy Holidays,


p.s. Happy Hanukkah
Dean Martin "making spirits bright"
I like the Mercury Living Presence LP "The Nutcracker" by Antal Dorati and the Minneapolis Symphony.
Christmas Time with the Judd's, superb on tubed amps.
"Meowy Christmas" by the Jingle Cats.
Charlie; don't know if it's still available, but we've used Anne Murray's "Christmas Wishes" CD on Christmas Eve for about 10 years or so. It's become our traditional Christmas music favorite. Cheers. Craig
"Acoustic Carols for Christmas" by St. Agnes Fountain (David Hughes, Chris Leslie, Julie Matthews, Chris While). Superb performances and exceptional sound quality- true audiophile nirvana. Available thru The Folk Corporation.
The Rat Pack Christmas CD is very enjoyable. If you like bluegrass music, Patty Loveless "Bluegrass & White Snow" is also nice.

We play R&B/Disco for X-Mas. The only real exception is a version of the "Nutcracker Suite" performed on mandolins.

Nothing like listening to "The Hustle" on X-Day (@ least in a Methodist/Jewish household:-).

I listen to the real X-Mas music whenever the mood hits, but usually not during the holiday itself.

Any day can be a holiday if you don't force it.
PS: I recently picked an R&B compilation by Rhino Records that sounds great (better than the same cuts on LP's).

Don't know how they got the old recordings to sound so good, but could go for more of these if they were produced in the same manner.

Oh, and the "Nutcracker Suite" is performed by The Modern Mandolin Quartet and is not as wierd as it would seem to be (it's a very nice version).
Handel's "Messiah"
Sir Malcolm Sargent
Royal Phil. Orch.
Chesky Records

Bob Rivers Twisted Radio
"I Am Santa Claus"

A Christmas Gift For You From Phil Spector
Phil Spector Records

Santamental Journey
Pop Vocal Christmas Classics
(Various Artists)
Jewel has a pretty nice Christmas cd. Vince Gil as well does a good rendition.
I love "Star of Wonder" by San Francisco Choral Artists (Reference Recordings)
(this might not be exactly Christmas but it Holiday music)
Holidays & Epiphanies---DALLAS WIND SYMPHONY
My favorite is Jill Sobule's "Merry Christmas From The Family". Need to get it off KaZaa as it's not on her albums. And get a can of fake snow from the Stop N' Go while you're out.
I have to say I am quite impressed with Jim Brickman's CD "The Gift". As it is a HDCD, it sounds great (on my HDCD CDP).

A couple of great recordings that are wonderful to hear and really bring out everything in your system are 1) Holly Cole, "Baby, It's Cold Outside" (2001 Alert Music 6152810382) and 2) David Benoit, "Christmastime" (1983 AVI Record Productions R279161). Honest to goodness, these are good enough to be reference recordings to use while analyzing components. Plus, and more importantly, they are a great listen.

Many of the Narada Christmas Collection cds are also quite good (e.g., 1988 Narada Productions "Narada Christmas Collection" ND-63902 and the 1992 "Volume 2" ND-63909).
Kenny Rankin's "A Christmas Album" is wonderful. Great performance and a warm, rich recording.