Saturday, January 04, 2020

Deutschland, Deutschland

Are you aching for some more foreign Christmas carols? Then here's your chance for a low-budget recording of some German carols, complete with a sheet that gives you all the words, in both English and German!  You can't beat that with a stick! I'm not sure of the origin of this recording, but I don't think it began life on UA.  Look close at the included lyric sheet, and it's crediting the Colonial label. I've never seen a Christmas recording on that label, but I've been proven wrong before. While I work on solving this mystery, please download and sing along with The International Chorale-Christmas Sing Along In German (AKA A German Christmas) (United Artists SP-183, Stereo, 1978).

1. O Du Frohliche O Du Selige
2. Alle Jahre Wieder
3. Die Weihnachtsnachtigall
4. Es Ist Ein Ros' Entsprungen
5. Ehre Sei Gott
6. Morgen Kinder Wird's Was Geben
7. Susser Die Glocken Nie Klingen
8. O, Tannenbaum, O, Tannenbaum
9. Ihr Kinderlein' Kommet
10. Maria Auf Dem Berge
11. In Dulci Jubilo
12. Am Weihnachtsbaum Die Lichter Brennen
13. Stille Nacht' Heilige Nacht
14. Maria Durch Ein' Dornwald Ging
15. Von Himmel Hoch


Southern Cal

I'm thinking I should have shared this one out with that record I posted from Boys Town earlier in the season, but I just got around to scanning this one recently, and then editing out a card that was taped to the cover of both copies I found. It wasn't that hard in the end, but I was dreading it for a while. I can still see where it was on there, but I doubt that you can.  :) And after all that work, it's still a pretty ugly cover.  Not sure who thought this scene would look better with a fire-lit sky in the background. But I suppose choices were made, and the end result is what we got. If you like kids singing, but not in a sloppy novelty way, then this is a good release for you.  It's not all kids though. Several different groups are credited, but there is no info about which group sings what, so I had to attribute all the songs to everyone.  I didn't dare try to guess which song is which group.  That way lies madness!  There is one spoken word welcome track at the beginning from Virgil Patterson, his autograph is the one on the card that was taped to the cover.  I assume he is (or was) the head honcho of this place, since it's pretty likely Cal Farley was no longer around by this point. Oh, if you're curious, it looks like the Boys Ranch is still going strong down Texas way. Go see 'em when you're in the neighborhood.  Until then though, please download and listen to Cal Farley's Boys Ranch (Chapel Choir, Ambassador Choir, Crusader Choir & Adult Choir)-King Of Love-A Christmas Musical (Cal Farley's Boys Ranch No Number, Stereo).

1. Introduction
2. Opening Theme
3. Hail, Thou Who Are Highly Favored
4. Wonderful Name
5. Savior Of Sinners
6. Theme & There Was No Room
7. Sleep, Holy Child
8. Glory To God
9. Alleluia! Now They Sing
10. King Of Love & Wonderful Name
11. Finale


Friday, January 03, 2020

A Weird One

This one is a little out of the ordinary. It's from a series that usually featured popular songs as performed by a band, but there is one key instrument missing. The idea was for you to provide that instrument by playing along with the record.  It must have been a fairly popular series, I see quite a few of them in my travels.  However, this is the only time I've seen a Christmas version. And to my ears, there's not really anything missing from the recordings.  They're sung by a choir, so there are plenty of vocals there already.  You can sing along if you like, but you aren't really adding much. And to top it all off, it's got a hideous cover.  I mean look at that thing.  Blech! The monochrome color scheme isn't doing it any favors. But there are a few songs here that I'm unfamiliar with, so maybe there's something on here that will interest you.  It's in a gatefold sleeve, and the music and lyrics to most of the songs are in there for your perusal, and I guess you can still sing along if you like.  This is The All Saints Choristers-William Self, Director-Henry Hokans, Organ-Christmas Carols For People Who Like To Sing Christmas Carols (Music Minus One MMO 1021, Mono).

1. Poverty
2. Verbum Caro
3. Harken, Harken Mother Dear
4. Jesu, Joy Of Man's Desiring
5. There Is No Rose
6. Christmas Song
7. Good King Wenceslas
8. Wassail Song
9. Andalusian Carol
10. Silent Night
11. Now Is The Time


Same Old Dorothy

Going way back into the history of the blog, here's an oldie from 2007 that came to mind recently, also in relation to that Christmas record over at Music You Won't. This EP was something that came out somewhere around 1960 (based on an album she put out on the Top Rank label at that time), and appears to have been a promotional piece only.  According to Discogs, my copy was put out by Sinclair Oil, but there were at least two other versions that were released for other companies. And I'm missing a nice little picture sleeve, too, so I need to hunt that down. This is Dorothy Collins-Produced Under The Direction Of Raymond Scott-Season's Greetings In Song (A Top Rank Artist 117058/117059). As I mentioned, this is a really old rip, so don't expect much.  And while there is some overlap in song selection with Ms. Collins full Christmas album, these are not the same versions.

1. Jingle Bells
2. White Christmas
3. Deck The Halls
4. Oh Holy Night


Navidad En Puerto Rico

What's up next?  Oh, how about a little something from Puerto Rico? I don't know much about it, other than it's got lots of organ on it, so you know it's gonna be good. And the cover ain't too bad, either!  This is Papá Candito-Felicidades (Fragoso (Puerto Rico) FLP-556, Mono, 1973).  Is it just me, or is Mono badly misspelled on the bottom edge of that cover? I thought maybe it was some Spanish version, but it's spelled correctly on the label.  Weird.

1. Aguinaldo Borincano
2. Cantares De Navidad
3. Jingle Bells
4. Zarandela
5. Blanca Navidad
6. Seis Chorreao
7. Flores De Amistad
8. En Nombre De Jesus
9. Saludos
10. Hermoso Bouquet
11. A Felicitarte
12. Llegaron Los Reyes


Thursday, January 02, 2020

New Share, Old Music

If you were paying close attention, you noticed the record I just shared with you a couple of hours ago, and you may recall that there was a second volume. Well, here's that second volume for you, and it comes with a little bit of a story. If you listen to the album, you'll see that side one is not all that Christmassy, like maybe they took old recordings and retitled them to fit in with the season.  Maybe they added some jingle bells here or there, but not much. At least side one sounds a bit like Tijuana music is meant to.  When you get to side two, you'll immediately notice that something is wrong.  It's Christmas music, but it's got no Tijuana flavor at all.  It's just an orchestra with singers.  The fine print on the back of the jacket even admits as much, but I'm sure very few buyers noticed that before they brought home the record.  Some digging and comparing reveals that side two is in fact tracks by Wally Stott, His Orchestra And Chorus from their 1959 Warner Bros. Christmas album Happy Holiday-Christmas In Stereo! I guess the power of licensing is strong with this one. Or maybe they just stole it and hoped no one would notice. I've had this share in the queue for a while, but I was reminded of it last night when Lee over at Music You Won't threw up a share from the same label that seems to have employed the same trick, only with the whole album. His record appears to be a track from Walter Brennan, and then the rest of the LP is Dorothy Collins from her rare Christmas record on Everest. You just never know what you're going to find when you're dealing with budget vinyl.  This is The George Garabedian Players-Tijuana Christmas Volume 2 (Mark 56 556, Stereo, 1968).

1. Tijuana Taxi
2. Christmas In Paris
3. The Star
4. March Of The Reindeer
5. Mexican Pine Cones
6. Mrs. Claus Says Ole'
7. Happy Holiday
8. Christmas Waltz
9. Snowfall
10. Good King Wenceslas
11. Silent Night
12. Christmas Sleigh Bells


Reshare Redo

I've wanted to reshare some older stuff with you this year, but there hasn't been much time in my busy schedule.  I look back at past years and wonder how I was able to do so much some years with the same amount of hours in the day, and I just don't know. Maybe I'm just getting older. But before the season gets totally away from me, here's a re-encode of an old share from 2012. So this is the same recording I shared back then, it's just encoded at a higher bitrate, so maybe it sounds a little better to you.  If you enjoy that Tijuana sound of Christmas, this is the record for you!  This is The George Garabedian Players-Phillips 66 Presents Tijuana Christmas (Mark 56 546, Stereo, 1968).

1. Jingle Bells
2. Parade Of The Wooden Soldiers
3. Christmas Sleigh Bells
4. Let It Snow, Let It Snow
5. Tijuana Christmas
6. White Christmas
7. Santa Claus, Santa Claus
8. Sleigh Ride
9. Winter Wonderland
10. Oh Little Town Of Bethlehem/It Came Upon A Midnight Clear
11. Adeste Fidelis/Silent Night


The Big One

This is one of the records I've been looking forward to sharing all season, and one of the records I've been most dreading sharing all season.  It's great music and there are three full albums in the box so there is a lot of it, but then there is the box itself.  Someone had played darts with it or something.  There were little holes and scratches all over it. I knew it was going to take a lot of work to make it presentable, and I was right.  I think I spent about two hours on the front cover alone today, and an hour and a half on the back cover, then a few minutes each on the label scans. And it's still not perfect, but it's presentable. I first learned of this album in the forums over at The 'Fa a few years ago, and various rips of it have been floating around ever since. I wanted to try my hand at it, and here is the result.  It's not particularly rare, but it is one of those things that seems to have been forgotten by time.  And there are a lot of good versions of familiar songs here that I think you'll enjoy, if you don't have a copy already.  This is The London Sound 70 Orchestra And Chorus-The Sounds Of Christmas (Decca 3xLP DEB 7-7, Stereo, 1970).

1. Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas
2. I Saw Three Ships
3. Happy Holiday
4. Silent Night
5. Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!
6. The Christmas Song (Merry Christmas To You)
7. Little Donkey
8. The Little Drummer Boy
9. Mary's Little Boy Child
10. Jingle Bells
11. All I Want For Christmas (Is My Two Front Teeth)
12. Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer
13. Sleigh Ride
14. Twelve Days Of Christmas
15. O, Tannenbaum
16. Christmas Alphabet
17. Deck The Hall
18. White Christmas
19. The First Noel
20. I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus
21. Silver Bells
22. The Holly And The Ivy
23. I'll Be Home For Christmas
24. Frosty The Snowman
25. I Heard The Bells On Christmas Day
26. God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen
27. Oh, Little Town Of Bethlehem
28. Santa Claus Is Comin' To Town
29. Adeste Fideles (O Come, All Ye Faithful)
30. Winter Wonderland


Wednesday, January 01, 2020

Nationwide Is On Your Side

You just gotta love it when these corporate choruses get comfortable in their abilities and decide to make an album.  In this case, it's the gang from Nationwide Insurance, and they are quite the brand ambassadors.  Perhaps it's this same group that later sang the famous Nationwide jingle.  I don't think that jingle existed when this record came out, though, so you don't get that here, it's just a bunch of Christmas carols and songs, with a few curveballs thrown in for good measure.  While it's still New Year's Day, be sure you download The Nationaires-Happy Holidays From The Nationaires (Nationwide Insurance Activities Association LPS 7100, Stereo).

1. It's The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year
2. An Irving Berlin Christmas
3. Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!
4. Santa Claus Is Comin' To Town
5. Silver Bells
6. I Remember December
7. Ave Maria
8. Do You Hear What I Hear
9. The Jesus Gift
10. Glory Hoodie
11. What Child Is This
12. Rose Of Sharon
13. Hallelujah Chorus From "Messiah"
14. O Holy Night (Cantique De Noel)


The Wonder Of 2020

Time for the first post of 2020! And it's somewhat fitting that it should be a recording of a military band from 45 years ago. It's four long medleys of common and uncommon carols, all put together for your Christmas, Advent and Epiphany joy.  This is The United States Air Force Band And The Singing Sergeants-Colonel Arnald D. Gabriel, Conductor-The Wonder Of Christmas (USAF AF 4175, Stereo, 1975). And just for the record, the whole shebang was created by Sergeant Floyd E. Werle.

1. Advent
2. Nativity I
3. Nativity II
4. Epiphany


Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Just For The Cover

I spotted the record you see above at the Salvation Army thrift store recently, and thought it was a copy of a record I shared with you last year. I still bought it because something didn't feel right, and you can't ignore those feelings when they are about Christmas music.  Sure enough, I got the record home and discovered that the two records didn't have much in common other than the cover. I see that the copy I shared last year had a bunch of text on the front cover that isn't on this new one, and maybe that's how I knew it was somehow different. I'm assuming this one is the original, since the name of the LP is actually what's written on the cover in the snow. And both production companies listed on the labels are in Cincinnati, so that's pretty much the only things these two releases have in common.  Perhaps a better sleuth than I can tie these two recordings together, otherwise I'm just going to guess that someone sold someone else a stock cover art. And believe me when I tell you I had to put a few hours worth of work into this cover to make it look halfway decent.  It had crayon writing and pencil scribblings all over it, along with some water stains and a burn mark.  Thankfully, most of that marring was in the snowy white areas so I was able to clone it out fairly easily. I think the final result is somewhat passable, though still not perfect. I get a little better at the Photoshop work each year, but it's hard to find the time to do all of it that needs done.  If you need some music to listen to while you perfect your Photoshop skills, this is The Cincinnati Strings-Christmas Love (General American Records GAR 11313, Stereo). Happy New Year, y'all!

1. Christmas Song
2. What Child Is This
3. Silent Night
4. Medley
5. O' Holy Night
6. Jingle Bells
7. Little Town Of Bethlehem
8. Carol Of The Bells
9. Jesu Bambino
10. White Christmas (AKA 'Twas The Night Before Christmas)
11. Adeste Fidelis


A Reshared Rarity

This one is a bit of a rarity in that it is something I posted back in 2010 that hasn't been seen at the blog ever since.  And it's also a rare request that I can actually fill, since I don't think it's seen the light of digital day anywhere since I first shared it. It's a release on the Enoch Light-led Grand Award label, though I think there are also copies on the Brigade label which released other Christmas things that first showed up on Grand Award.  Must be some link there that needs some more investigating. If you're interested in the mid-century choral sound, then this might be for you.  It's a pretty old rip though, so beware.  Bitrate is a little low, and this predates my use of ClickRepair, so your ears may not thank you for downloading.  But if you still want it, this is The Edward Carrington Chorale-Christmas Chorale (Grand Award GA 33-387, Mono, 1958)

1. Hark! The Herald Angels Sing
2. Good King Wenceslas
3. Silent Night
4. The First Noel
5. God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen
6. It Came Upon The Midnight Clear
7. Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!
8. O Come All Ye Faithful
9. Oh Holy Night
10. Oh Little Town Of Bethlehem
11. Deck The Halls
12. Angels We Have Heard On High
13. Joy To The World
14. Away In A Manger
15. God Give Ye Merry Christmastide
16. Jingle Bells
17. White Christmas
18. Sleigh Ride


Update: You can get a stereo version over at Lee's place. Never seen a copy of the stereo! 

A Bit More Organ

Another one that I found in the pile that I meant to share earlier, this organ record was produced by Yamaha in the Canadian market. Canada seems to be a common thread running through a lot of posts this season, doesn't it? Maybe that's just me...  Anyhow, this is similar to earlier shares that were brought to you by a company to feature it's machines' best attributes. And certainly that's what you get here. For your New Year's Eve morning, this is Rodger Niznik, Dave Mitchell & Ron Grecco-Christmas Presents (AKA Christmas Presents From) (Rieki Sound For Yamaha (Canada) MBS 0014, Stereo, 1975).

1. Jingle Bells
2. What Child Is This?
3. O, Holy Night
4. White Christmas
5. I'll Be Home For Christmas
6. Winter Wonderland
7. Sleigh Ride
8. Silver Bells
9. Santa Claus Is Coming To Town
10. The Christmas Song
11. Carol Medley: (a) O, Come All Ye Faithful (b) It Came Upon A Midnight Clear (c) Hark The Herald Angels Sing


Monday, December 30, 2019

Red Hot Organ

I know you just can't get enough of the organ for Christmas, so here's a great record I'd never seen before I found this copy.  And if the cover isn't enough to draw you in, take a look below at that beautiful ruby red vinyl! I think on a lot of old records like this, the colored vinyl is just the icing on the cake.  You probably didn't know it was on colored vinyl when you bought it, but then when you got it home and pulled it out of the sleeve for the first time, there it is!  What a great surprise! Anyhow, this is your standard organ record for the period, so don't expect anything too exciting. It does have a nice collection of secular Christmas tunes, as well as the usual sacred stuff, so that's nice.  This is Larry Caton At The Organ Console With Chimes And Celeste-Christmas Time (Herald HLP 0109 Transparent Red Vinyl, Mono, 1957).

1. Silent Night, Holy Night
2. O Little Town Of Bethlehem
3. O Come, All Ye Faithful (Adeste Fidelis)
4. Hark! The Herald Angels Sing
5. It Came Upon The Midnight Clear
6. Away In A Manger
7. The First Noel
8. O Holy Night (Cantique De Noel)
9. God Rest Ye, Merry Gentlemen
10. Joy To The World
11. Star Of The East
12. The Holy City
13. Ave Maria
14. Ave Maria
15. While Shepherds Watch'd Their Flocks
16. Silver Bells
17. Toyland
18. The Christmas Song
19. Here Comes Santa Claus
20. Frosty The Snow Man
21. Santa Claus Is Comin' To Town
22. Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer
23. Winter Wonderland
24. Jingle Bells


Yes Way Jose

You may have thought the remasters were done, but here's another for your collection.  I've come to appreciate this recording from Jose Melis more than I did when I first shared it back in 2006. It's got some very good bits, and I think this new transfer brings some of the excellent playing to the forefront. But Melis is still best known as the bandleader on the original Jack Paar Tonight show.  His albums released during and after that time are thrift store staples, though this Christmas LP doesn't show up too much.  My old share was on the Seeco label, this new one is on their sub-label, Bronjo, and features a great Stereo banner across the top of the cover. (I put the old cover in the download for you, though there are no label scans. I guess I didn't scan labels back then.) I see there is a re-encoded share of an older rip still out there on the blog, but I think this is the one you want. This is Jose Melis, His Piano & Strings-Christmas With Melis (Bronjo BR 1060, Stereo, 1958). I'm not certain if this version came out first, or if the one on Seeco did, but I know 1958 is the original release date.

1. Sleigh Bells (Actually Sleigh Ride, but that's what it says on the sleeve. The label seems to have it correct...)
2. Winter Wonderland
3. The Story Of Christmas
4. Jingle Bells
5. Toy Piano
6. Merry Christmas Music
7. Silent Night
8. Adeste Fidelis
9. God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen
10. It Came Upon A Midnight Clear
11. Hark! The Herald Angels Sing
12. Oh! Little Town Of Bethlehem; Noel, Noel; Silent Night


Sunday, December 29, 2019


Time for another exciting installment of TV preachers on record. Except this time, it's not really a TV preacher, and it's more of a guest spot instead of a headlining gig. The preacher is Dr. Norman Vincent Peale, someone who's certainly not a stranger to recording or the airwaves. I think there are still a few of his earlier Guideposts Christmas records I'm still searching for, but this one will do until the earlier stuff comes along. The headliners here are the members of The Marble Collegiate Church Choir, showing up in both group and solo settings.  There's some good music here, and of course a few spoken word segments from Dr. Peale. I hope it's something you can enjoy.  This is The Marble Collegiate Church Choir With Chamber Orchestra, Featuring Dr. Norman Vincent Peale-Love On Earth-Favorite Songs Of Christmas (Dynamic Recording Studios XPL-1025, Stereo).

1. Joy To The World
2. A Special Christmas Message
3. Hark! The Herald Angels Sing
4. Lo, How A Rose E'er Blooming
5. The Angel's Message To Mary
6. My Soul Doth Magnify The Lord (From Saint-Saens' Christmas Oratorio)
7. The Birth Of Jesus
8. There Were Shepherds (From Handel's Messiah)
9. Glory To God (From Handel's Messiah)
10. O Little Town Of Bethlehem
11. In Dulci Jubilo
12. O Come, All Ye Faithful
13. The Gift Of Christmas
14. The 12 Days Of Christmas
15. The Virgin's Slumber Song
16. Angels We Have Heard On High
17. I Wonder As I Wander
18. O Holy Night
19. Silent Night


Disco Christmas In Canada

Is it my imagination, or am I sharing better Christmas music after the big day than I did before? I guess it depends on what kinda music you like, really.  Some people don't care about disco, but I remember being really excited about this record when I found it, yet here I am sharing it out a few days after Christmas. The day I spotted this record in the stack of another collector at the Salvation Army, I was heartbroken.  I knew it was Christmas disco, and I was pretty sure I'd never seen it before.  The nature of Christmas disco records is that they were recycled pretty frequently, so it's rare to find something that wasn't previously released as something else.  As I watched the other guy carry the record around the store, I got a little depressed.  But then as he examined all the records in his stack, he threw this one back because it was too beat up and he didn't think it was worth anything.  Well, it was worth a lot to me, so I grabbed it, paid my dollar and brought it home.  Doing a little research reveled that it was indeed a reissue of something that had come out earlier, but still not something I had ever seen before. The die-cut cover kind of put me off taking the time to properly scan in the cover for you, but I finally took some time last night to get it cut out and looking half decent.  It's still pretty beat up, and shows a lot of ring wear, but it's still got a lot of charm.  Give it a listen and tell me if it was worth the wait.  This is Montreal Sound-Christmas Disco Party (AKA Canadian Christmas-New Sound Of Xmas) (N.S.B. (Canada) NSB 103 (AKA N.S.B. 101 on label), Stereo, 1977).

1. The Jokers-Gloria Medley (Gloria; The Shepherds; Jingle Bells; Hark The Herald Angels Sing; Sleigh Ride; God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen; In The Manger; O Come All Ye Faithful; Little Town Of Bethlehem; The First Noel; The Angel Song; The Big Ending)
2. S. Beausoleil-Little Drummer Boy
3. R. Lee-Halleluia
4. R. Berthiaume-White Christmas
5. R. Lee-Silent Night Suite (Silent Night; Holy Night; Fugue; Ave Maria; Holy Night)
6. G. Bribosia-Little Altar Boy
7. C. Linton-When The Year Is Over (Time Goes By; Happy New Year; Now Is Time To Celebrate; Zezelte; Auld Lang Syne)