Friday, July 11, 2008

Christmas In July 2008-Day 11

OK, if this post goes as planned, then I will be back on track with post number 11 on the 11th. Then if I don't get sick again, maybe I can finish out the month on time. This post gets you in the Christmas spirit with five great versions of Irving Berlin's classic White Christmas.

Where do I start? OK, how about a medley entitled Easter Parade; White Christmas by Jay Blackton Conducting His Chorus And Orchestra from the album Let Me Sing And I'm Happy-The Best Of Irving Berlin (Epic LN 3408). Two, two, two holidays in one with this track!

Track two is not a medley, but it does have an odd seventies vibe to it. I can't explain what I mean by that, just give it a listen. The artist is The Riviera Orchestra and it's from the album The Best Of Irving Berlin (Mercury Wing SRW-11010).

Version three is by Jack Shaidlin And His Orchestra Featuring Will Bradley And Al Gallodoro from their LP Academy Award Favorites (Mercury MG 20061). Pretty straightforward, and frankly boring, version.

Number four is by Merrill Jay from his tribute album Bing Crosby-A Tribute (Galaxy GAL 121). I had to look awful close on this record to find an artist listed. They've gone to a lot of trouble to make it look like a Bing Crosby record, and I'm sure some folks were confused. The guy doesn't sound one bit like Bing, but whatever. I've got another record from the same guy that's a similar 'tribute' to Nat King Cole, so guess which song you'll hear from this same guy later in the month? I bet he doesn't sound like Nat King Cole, either.

The fifth, and probably best, version is by Andre Kostelanetz And His Orchestra and it comes to us via his LP Music Of Irving Berlin (Columbia CL 768). AK may be the only artist on this playlist who actually knew Irving Berlin, and he does the biggest, lushest, most spectacular version of the track since the original Bing.

So there you go, another great collection of real Christmas music, right here in the middle of July. Here's the download link, and remember, if you wish hard enough for a white Christmas, you just might get it. And pigs might fly, too. (If you haven't already, go back to this day in 2006 and 2007 for more Christmas In July goodness.)

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