Saturday, December 16, 2023

Eat The Apple

Heading over to Germany now for an album of tunes both old and new. It's an interesting mix of stuff here, from old classics like Silent Night in the original German to some newer songs that didn't quite become seasonal standards. I guess many artists like to put such original songs on their albums because they can get a bigger cut of the publishing money. I don't pretend to know how it works but I've read enough stories of The Beatles loosing their publishing company to understand that's where the money is. But this isn't The Beatles, this is Adam & Eve-Christmas Time In Germany-Weihnachtszeit, Schöne Zeit (Peters International PLD 7066, Stereo, 1977). The credits are a little unclear, but I'm pretty sure two of the songs here are by Helmut Zacharias. Whether he backs Adam and Eve on the other songs is anyone's guess.

1. Adam & Eve-Weihnachtszeit, Schöne Zeit (Christmas Time, Beautiful Time)
2. Helmut Zacharias Mit Den Westfälischen Nachtigallen-Der Kleine Trommler (Little Drummer Boy)
3. Adam & Eve-Süsser Die Glocken Nie Klingen (The Bells Never Sound Sweeter)
4. Adam & Eve-Es War In Bethlehem (It Happened In Bethlehem)
5. Adam & Eve Mit Little Roberto-Der Weihnachtsmann (Santa Claus)
6. Adam & Eve-Schlafe Mein Prinzchen (Sleep My Little Prince)
7. Adam & Eve-Frohes Fest Und Weisse Weihnacht (Happy Holidays And White Christmas)
8. Adam & Eve-Jingle Bells
9. Helmut Zacharias Mit Den Westfälischen Nachtigallen-Oh Du Fröhliche (O Sanctissima)
10. Adam & Eve-Ein Wintermärchen (A Winter Fairy Tale)
11. Adam & Eve-Leise Rieselt Der Schnee (Snow Is Falling Softly)
12. Adam & Eve-Weisse Nacht (White Night)
13. Adam & Eve-Stille Nacht, Heilige Nacht (Silent Night)


Burke's Law

I'm always excited when I come across vintage Christmas records that are completely new and unknown to me. I was recording a various artists record from the mid-sixties that Columbia put together for the Philco division of Ford when a track from this record turned up. It was a bit of a mystery to me since I could place every other track on the record (half of them were the usual Columbia stalwarts, the other half were drawn from the Roulette stable of artists), but this artist was completely new to me. A few minutes of research at Discogs and the record was on it's way. Turns out this family group was pretty big in the Sixties with appearances on the variety shows of the day like Ed Sullivan. According to Discogs, they only released two albums, and according to the back of this one there might be a stereo copy out there somewhere. I'll keep looking for it, but in the meantime use your one good ear to give a listen to The Burke Family Singers-Caroling At Christmas (Squire SQ 33005, Mono, 1964).

1. If Ye Would Hear The Angels Sing
2. The Little Drummer Boy
3. Bring Your Torches, Jeanette, Isabella
4. O Come, Little Children
5. Three Christmas Spirituals: Behold That Star; Mary Had A Baby; Go, Tell it On The Mountain
6. I Sing Of A Maiden
7. The First Nowell
8. Christmas Day Rises Clear
9. Carol Of The Bells
10. I Wonder As I Wander
11. I Saw Three Ships
12. Le Sommel De L'Enfant Jesus
13. Christmas Echo Song (Echolied)
14. Jesus Falls Asleep
15. Silent Night


Cha Cha Cha

While we're singing Spanish Christmas songs, here's another set of them. I'm afraid I don't know much about this group or the release, and the music inside isn't something I can appreciate as much as I should, but perhaps it's something you'll enjoy. This is Los Diplomaticos-Unas Navidades Alegres (Kubaney MT-379, Stereo). Call me crazy, but I just can't help buying something featuring Cha Cha Cha de la Navidad!

1. Brisas Navideñas
2. De La Montaña Venimos
3. Somos Boricuas
4. Cha Cha Cha De La Navidad
5. Las Galleretas
6. Flores De Amistad
7. Cantares De Navidad-Un Año Que Viene y Otro Que Se Va
8. Llego La Navidad
9. Vamos A Gozar
10. Felicidades
11. Romance Campesino
12. La Mora-Cuando Ilegará Nochebuena


The Return Of Menudo

I've been negligent in bring you any remasters lately, so here's a good one from way, way back in 2005, our first year of blogging. I see that the copy I ripped for my remaster had some issues with the cover that were not there on the one I used back then. Not sure what happened to my copy from way back then, I'm sure it's still in the archives somewhere but I couldn't tell you where. This one featured a mini-poster though that I don't think I had back then, so at least you get that. It's nothing too special, but it's in the download for you. You know about Menudo, right? They were a boy band before there was a name for such a group. And they stayed a boy band indefinately. As soon as you got too old, you were out of the band and they replaced you with someone younger. I remember they tried to make it big in America, but they never caught on probably because not enough people spoke Spanish yet. These days, I bet they would be much bigger. You might know that Ricky Martin passed through their ranks at one time if you've ever heard of them, that may be their biggest claim to fame. For pre-teens everywhere, this is Menudo-Feliz Navidad (Profono Internacional TPL-1405, Stereo, 1983)

1. La Gallina
2. Traigo Una Parranda
3. Noche De Paz
4. Las Nubes
5. Las Navidades
6. Ensillando Mi Caballo
7. Chiji Navideño
8. Mi Parranda
9. El Tamborilero
10. Eso Es Mio
11. Ñaqui... Quiñaqui
12. Voy Tambien
13. Año Nuevo Y Reyes
14. Plena Borinqueña


Anita 2

Yep, she had a second album and here it is. Pretty sure this one is from just before she opened her mouth and spit out so much hate, but I don't know the whole timeline. It was a different world back then, or so we like to think. I'm trying not to get political here or express an opinion, but hate is never a good thing in any guise. Let's focus on the joys of Christmas. This is Anita Bryant-The Miracle of Christmas (Word WST-8558-LP, Stereo, 1972). Enjoy!

1. Angels We Have Heard On High
2. What Child Is This?
3. Hush, The Baby Is Sleeping
4. Sweet Little Jesus Boy
5. We Three Kings
6. Joy To The World
7. C-H-R-I-S-T-M-A-S
8. Medley: God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen and Coventry Carol
9. The Star Carol
10. Would You Feel Lost In Bethlehem?
11. Hark The Herald Angels Sing


Anita 1

I know this is a record from someone with a lot of baggage, but I'm just presenting it for the music and for the time she spent on the stage with Bob Hope as he toured for the troops over all those Christmases past. Her name pops up again and again in his book about those Christmas shows, so I thought it would be nice to give a listen to one of the artists who shared the stage with him. There's some good stuff here if you can look past her hateful politics. This is Anita Bryant-Do You Hear What I Hear?-Christmas With Anita Bryant (Columbia CS 9520, Stereo, 1967). This was later reissued with a modified cover and an abridged track list on Columbia's budget label Harmony. I've included scans of that one in the package for you.

1. Do You Hear What I Hear?
2. In A Humble Place
3. The First Noel
4. Mary's Lullaby (Sleep Baby, Sleep)
5. The Story Of Christmas
6. Silent Night, Holy Night
7. O Little Town Of Bethlehem
8. It Came Upon A Midnight Clear
9. O Holy Night
10. O Come All Ye Faithful
11. Away In A Manger


Friday, December 15, 2023


I'm a big fan of the RCA Victor label, especially in the early years of the LP when they seemed to make some classic music that was paired with beautiful album covers, often topped by a Living Stereo banner after 1958. And when it comes to Christmas music of the label, I sometimes feel like I have it all but then something comes along and makes me think otherwise. This album is one of those records. I spotted it in a random search at Discogs and it was cheap, so an order was placed and here it is. Turns out it's from Canada, that's why I hadn't seen it before, I don't believe there was ever a US release. It's a various artists thing with vocalists I've never heard of before, but I think you can find something good to listen to in every record. Give this a listen for me. This is Noël... Noël... Noël... (RCA Victor Serie Gala (Canada) CGPS 109, Stereo).

1. Claude Létourneau Avec Grande Orchestre et Choeurs-Venez Divin Messie
2. Claude Létourneau Avec Grande Orchestre et Choeurs-Il Est Né Le Divin Enfant
3. Guy Lavoie Avec Grande Orchestre et Choeurs-Ca Bergers Assemblons Nous
4. Claude Létourneau Avec Grande Orchestre et Choeurs-Dans Cette Étable
5. Guy Lavoie & Claude Létourneau Avec Grande Orchestre et Choeurs-Les Anges Dans Nos Campagnes
6. Guy Lavoie Avec Grande Orchestre et Choeurs-D'où Viens-Tu Bergère?
7. Choeur Avec Grande Orchestre-Jésus Sur Cette Terre
8. Pierre Bouter Avec Grande Orchestre et Choeurs-Noël Des Trois Enfants
9. Catherine Maisse Avec Grande Orchestre et Choeurs-Histoire De Père Noël
10. Aline Giroux Avec Grande Orchestre et Choeurs-Ave Maria


You Want A Shake With That?

Who remembers Rax? It was a restaurant chain that was around in the 80's, maybe on into the 90's a bit. They had a restaurant layout that looked a little bit like a Wendy's of the period with the sunroom at the front. That design didn't work well in Florida, it was always too hot to sit in that area. I think they had roast beef sandwiches like an Arby's, and fancy shakes. That's about all I remember about them, other than they disappeared at some point and I never thought about them again until I found this record. It seems to have been put out as a charity fundraiser thing in association with Rax by a rock and roll group that tried hard but never quite made the big time. It's a bit short, but it's pretty enjoyable and I'm sharing it with you today. This is McGuffey Lane-Christmas With McGuffey Lane-Presented By Rax (Rax Restaurants No Number, Stereo, 1986)

1. Bring Back My Baby (For Christmas)
2. Christmas Letter
3. The Voices of Rejoicing Love
4. What Child Is This (Greensleeves)
5. It's Not Christmas (Till You're In My Arms)
6. It's Hot This Christmas


Jul Jul

From Brazil we head to Sweden for some Christmas music from much closer to the North Pole. I don't know much about this one other than I like what I hear, Give it a listen and see if it doesn't bring a smile to your face. This is Anna-Lena Löfgren (both with and without Artur Erikson, but mostly without)-Jul Jul Strålande Jul (Metronome MLP 15348, Stereo, 1969).

1. Jul, Jul Strålande Jul
2. Ave Maria
3. O, Helga Natt
4. Gläns Över Sjö Och Strand
5. Jag Drömmer Om En Jul Hemma (White Christmas)
6. Räck Mej Din Hand, Vi Har Samma Väg Att Gå
7. Julotta (Adeste Fideles)
8. Det Är En Ros Utsprungen
9. Stilla Natt, Heliga Natt
10. Sankta Lucia
11. O, Sälla Dag


Book Of Lists 4

Another list! While I'm thinking about it, does anyone remember those books that were actually titled The Book Of Lists? It was a series I remember liking when I was a young kid in grade school. They were just what the title says, a book filled with lists of things that may or may not be interesting. Could be the largest lakes in the world, the continents ranked by size or population or total coastline, that sort of thing. They certainly wouldn't all be geographical in nature, those were just a couple examples that popped into my head. I think it was grouped into subject chapters, so geography would probably have been a chapter. Entertainment might have been another with the top movies of the '60s, or longest running TV shows, or American sitcoms ripped off from British sitcoms. I loved those books when I was a kid and would read them voraciously. Probably didn't learn a whole lot, but I was pretty good at Trivial Pursuit after it was invented. Anyhow, back to the Discogs list. This time it's a collection of all the songs issued in support of Christmas Seals. They've been doing those for a long time though I don't think they continued much past the seventies. The stamps themselves are still around though. This list is just for the annual songs, not the promotional records that they've put out with radio shows, celebrity greetings and whatnot, that would be a much longer list. I've been slowly trying to amass all the recordings here for a collection, but it's hard. Many of the records feature introductions by the artist and collectors snap those things up in a heartbeat. Some of them have never been reissued and seem to be in some sort of legal limbo (I'm looking at you, Sammy Davis, Jr.!). Anyhow, have a look, see if you have heard them all.

The List!

Willys (Not Jeep)

This one is from really far away but I'm glad it made it's way to me so I can share it with you. And I found myself enjoying it when it popped up in my Christmas playlist. This record came all the way from Brazil which means it's sung in Portuguese (I think Brazil is the only country in South America that doesn't speak Spanish, not everybody knows that.) And as a cherry on the cake, the group is a bunch of employees from the local Willys auto plant. I don't know the whole history here, but in the US the Willys brand is associated with the early Jeep from when it was still a military vehicle only. I know a friend of my dad's had an old one in his barn when I was growing up, one that was later made for civilian use, and it looked about halfway between a regular car of the early fifties and a Jeep. I think the marque continued on overseas much longer than it did here in the US, maybe associated with Ford for a while? I should do some more research, but this is all pretty far afield from Christmas music and that's my focus this time of year. Bottom line, it's a corporate chorus, and good one at that. I think you'll really enjoy this one (and some great artwork doesn't hurt, be sure to take a look at the flip side in the download). This is Coral Willys Com Orquestra RGE, Direcao Do Coral Maestro Zuinglio Faustini-Boas Festas (RCA Electronica Brasileira S.A. (Brazil) for Willys NAC-1.223, Mono).

1. Alegria De Natal
2. Boas Festas
3. Ave Maria De Somma
4. Valsa De Natal
5. Noite De Рaz
6. Gloria In Excelsis
7. Marсha Da Quarta-Feira De Сinzas
8. Estrela Do Mar
9. Marcha Do Amor Sem Esperança
10. Ranсho Dos Namoradas
11. Estão Voltando As Flores
12. Pastorinhas


Tall, Tall Hawtree

You know I can't get enough of these local Christian Christmas albums, so here's another one for you early morning listening. I'm sure I was drawn to this one by the vivid red cover and the fancy snowflakes. And now you know about as much about this one as I do. I see there are other gospel albums out there by this same lady, so there's bound to be some info out there somewhere. The address on this one is Missouri, but one of the ones I saw had an address here in Florida on it. Hard to tell since they probably used whatever record company was showing interest at the time. Oh, wait, there is a Florida address on the back of this one, up in Jacksonville, so maybe this is a local Florida lady. Give it a listen and see what you think of Mrs. Dan Hawtree. This is Pat Hawtree-Do You Know The Christ Of Christmas? (Golden Sound Studio 058510, Stereo).

1. Do You Know The Christ Of Christmas?
2. No Room
3. Thou Didst Leave Thy Throne
4. That Beautiful Name
5. Oh Come All Ye Faithful
6. Ring The Bells
7. The Birthday Of The King
8. Jesus, Wonderful Lord
9. Silent Night, Holy Night
10. Away In The Manger
11. It Came Upon The Midnight Clear
12. Oh, Holy Night


Christmas Near Home

By far, this is the record from closest to my house that I've ever shared. We drive by this church every time we go downtown for Thai food. Never been inside, but it's a big hulking affair, looks about like you'd expect, and the record sounds about like you'd expect. It's local music, but well recorded if not a bit boring. I enjoy it because I know that it was made nearby and I like that sort of provenance. If that sound like something you could get into, please download and enjoy St. Martha's Parish Choir-Christmas Midnight Mass 1977 Choral And Organ Music (St. Martha's Church, Sarasota, Florida SMC-100, Stereo, 1977)

1. Prelude & Chorale: Let All Together Praise Our God
2. Up, O Shepherds!
3. Behold A Mystical Rose
4. Gabriel's Message
5. In Dulce Jubilo
6. Dona Nobis Pacem ("Grant Us Peace.")
7. What Is This Lovely Fragrance?
8. Angels We Have Heard On High
9. Let Our Gladness Know No End
10. Lo, How A Rose E'er Blooming
11. Sussex Carol ("On Christmas Night All Christians Sing...")
12. The Nativity (1. The Creche; 2. The Angels; 3. The Shepherds; 4. The Holy Family)
13. Adeste, Fideles


Thursday, December 14, 2023

Ham For Dinner

The last entry in our religious Christmas collection today is from a church located in our nations capitol Washington, DC. It was released in honor of their 100 year anniversary in 1965. I just checked and they still seem to be going strong (although with a slight name change) more than 50 years past that, so they must be doing something right. This is Hamline Methodist Church-Dr. James R. Houghton, Guest Conductor-Hallelujah! For The Lord God Omnipotent Reigneth (Hamline Methodist Church CSM 173, Stereo, 1965).

1. O Come, O Come Immanuel
2. Joy To The World!
3. Now Let Every Tongue Adore Thee
4. Prayer To Jesus
5. I Will Not Leave You Comfortless
6. Tenebrae Factae Sunt
7. God Of Our Life, Through All The Encircling Years
8. The Hallelujah Chorus
9. Silent Night, Holy Night
10. We Have Seen His Star
11. Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence
12. He Shall Feed His Flock Like A Shepherd
13. Lo! How A Rose E'er Blooming
14. Hark! The Herald Angels Sing
15. Glory To God In The Highest


Missed Some

I think I missed a few cards. Don't want to leave anyone out, so thanks a million for these!!

Just For You

Another fine selection of gospel artists here for you, all doing their level best to bring you their greatest Christmas songs. Well, actually, that's not true. There are a few songs here that don't seem to be related to Christmas at all, but they're still interesting and worth a listen. I also find it interesting that there are a few secular titles here, performed by someone calling themselves Reverend. There's probably a story there, but I don't know what it is. What I do know is that this is A Holiday Gift Just For You (SongBird Records/ABC Dunhill SBLP-235, Stereo, 1973).

1. Reverend Cleophus Robinson-Little Drummer Boy
2. Bertha Robinson-View The City
3. The Cotton Brothers-The Gift
4. Reverend Cleophus Robinson-Sweet Little Jesus Boy
5. Reverend Cleophus Robinson-Silent Night
6. Julius Cheeks-Bright Light Somewhere
7. Biblical Gospel Singers-I Come To Praise Him
8. The Mighty Clouds Of Joy-Go Tell It On The Mountain
9. The Dixie Hummingbirds-Christian Automobile
10. The Highway QC's-Blessed Jesus
11. Eugene Williams And Sis. Lee Ida Brown-Great Joy
12. The Highway QC's-Going To See The King
13. Reverend Cleophus Robinson-White Christmas


The Latest Batch

I wanted to catch y'all up on some of the Christmas cards I've been getting from fans of the blog. Thanks so much for taking the time to send these. I know you didn't have too, so you had to go at least a little out of your way to share these with us. There was also a really long Christmas letter, but it seemed kinda personal so I didn't want to put it in the picture. I'm sure you know who you are. Thanks again to all!

Trombone Christmas

We've had Christmas music played with just about every instrument you can imagine around here, but I suspect this is the first one with a trombone as the lead. That's right, a trombone. This appears to have been made by a gentleman who had a Christian ministry called Night Sounds, and this record was part of a series they put out called Treasury Of Sacred Music. This is volume seven in the series, and includes a couple of songs that were pulled from other records, but I don't know if those others were part of the series or not. So now you know just about everything I know about this record. Give it a download and listen, let me know what you think. This is Bill Pearce-Christmas In The Air (NightSounds 608025X (NightSounds Treasury Of Sacred Music Vol. VII), Stereo).

1. Sleigh Ride
2. I Wonder As I Wander
3. Ready For Christmas
4. Carolling, Carolling
5. White Christmas
6. What If He Hadn't Come?
7. God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen
8. The Christmas Song
9. Go Tell It On The Mountain
10. No Room
11. Love Was When
12. Once In Royal David's City


What's A Gospelodium?

I was pretty excited when I came across a copy of this record in the stacks this year. I think it was something that I bought on my Christmas trip to NYC a few years ago based on the price sticker, but I didn't have any memory of picking it up. I bought so many records in such a short time on that trip, then had to cut it short after getting sick (who knew the weather was really cold in New York in December...). After I got the record recorded, I spent some time researching it on Discogs and was surprised to find a note that mentioned the stereo and mono versions were not the same. My copy was mono so now the race was on to find a stereo copy, but chances were slim. Fast forward a couple months down the road and a stereo copy popped up in, of all places, my own collection. I tell you, I have no idea what I really have here. So I recorded the stereo copy, compared it to the mono copy and found that if there are any differences, they are minor. There may be a couple of different takes on a couple of the songs, but I don't think you can tell the difference just from a listen. I had to compare the waveforms in my software and play them at the same time to tell the difference. I think what had happened was a sloppy entry of some data at Discogs that led to the two track listings not matching. I've since updated both entries to match the two copies I have, and they're the same now. But you can download both copies and see if you can tell a difference.  This is Christmas Gospelodium (Verve V6-5043, Stereo, 1967 and Verve V-5043, Mono, 1967). There's some good stuff on here, enjoy!

1. Robert Banks With The Golden Voices Ensemble-Arranged And Conducted By Robert Banks-The Silent Night Sermon
2. Alice McClarity, Robert Pinkston & Orchestra-Arranged And Conducted By Robert Banks-Go Tell It On A Mountain
3. Golden Voices Ensemble-Arranged And Conducted By Robert Banks-It Came Upon A Midnight Clear
4. The Gospel Ambassadors-Arranged And Conducted By Robert Banks-A Blessing
5. Golden Voices Ensemble-Arranged And Conducted By Robert Banks-Christ The Lord Is Born
6. Lloyd Reese And The Solid Rock Chorus-Arranged And Conducted By Robert Banks-Sweet Little Lord Jesus
7. Alice McClarity, Robert Pinkston & Orchestra-Arranged And Conducted By Robert Banks-Sweet Little Boy
8. Lloyd Reese With The Golden Voices Ensemble-Arranged And Conducted By Robert Banks-The Christmas Song
9. Bill Hardy With The Golden Voices Ensemble-Arranged And Conducted By Robert Banks-Glory To The New Born King
10. Robert Banks With The Shockley Sisters-Arranged And Conducted By Robert Banks-So Much To Thank Him For

MEGA (Stereo)

MEGA (Mono)

That Seventies Show

Continuing on with a loose theme of Gospel singers for the day, this next LP comes from a church in Georgia that was excited about the turbulent 60's drawing to a close and all the wonderful new things that the unfurling 70's had to offer. I won't go into the relative merits of the sixties versus the seventies, but I think it was a bit of a tossup. Who can blame them in their enthusiasm though? There was a lot to be hopeful for at the time. Give it a listen and try to remember the times. This is Fairburn United Methodist Choir-Betty Tucker, Director-Christmas In The Seventies (Allied Artists Audio for Fairburn United Methodist Church PRP 23771/23772, Stereo, 1970). Enjoy!

1. God Bless You
2. Christians, Awake!
3. O Come, O Come, Immanuel; O Little Town Of Bethlehem; Hark! The Herald Angels Sing
4. I Heard The Bells On Christmas Day
5. We Three Kings (Hark! The Herald Angels Sing)
6. Go, Tell It On The Mountain
7. Gesu Bambino (The Infant Jesus)
8. While By My Sheep
9. Angels, From The Realms Of Glory
10. O Come, All Ye Faithful
11. Thou Didst Leave Thy Throne
12. We Sing In Celebration
13. O Star, O'er Bethlehem Shining
14. Christ Is Born This Evening
15. Joy To The World
16. Silent Night


Update-31 Dec 23- I was listening to this one in the car and noticed that the song playing didn't match the tag. I went back and discovered that I had cut it incorrectly, then tagged it poorly. So I went and redid it. No one noticed, so I doubt if this was a very popular share, but I wanted it to be right. If you download it now, you should get the correct files.

Bogging Down

What day is this? Thursday? Still more than a week until Christmas. This season is really flying by, I need to get my act together and post some shares for ya'll. This next artist was a big Christian singer in his day, and I think I've shared a 10" record of his around here before, but today you get the full 12" experience. Unfortunately, I believe this record is in mono, so I'll have to keep an eye out for the stereo version. In the meantime, this is Frank Boggs With The Concert Orchestra Of London Conducted By Paul Mickelson-Love Came Down At Christmas (Word W-3140-LP, Mono, 1961). Enjoy!

1. A King Is Born: O Come, All Ye Faithful; The First Noel; We Three Kings
2. O Come, O Come, Emmanuel
3. Once In Royal David's City
4. I Heard The Bells On Christmas Day
5. Jesus, Jesus Rest Your Head
6. The Birthday Of A King
7. Love Came Down At Christmas
8. O Holy Night
9. What Child Is This
10. While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks
11. Sweet Little Jesus Boy
12. Medley Of Carols: Hark! The Herald Angels Sing; Silent Night; Joy To The World


Wednesday, December 13, 2023

Not Arc

Whoops, I seem to have run out of releases on the Arc label before I ran out of day. I had one more for you but it turns out I already shared it when I gave you all those Chipmunk ripoffs the other day. So if you want more Arc, you'll have to go over there and get it. There's also this one from Catherine McKinnon in the archives. But that's it, no more new ones. Instead I'll have to dig something else up for you. How about this religious album for you on really nice clear red vinyl? This is Hilding Halvarson-Music For Christmas (Bible Crusaders B.C.-LP #3 (Transparent Red Vinyl), Mono). The name sounds Swedish, but I believe he and this record hail from the Pacific Northwest.

1. O Come All Ye Faithful
2. Silent Night Holy Night
3. I Wonder As I Wander
4. Away In A Manger
5. Hark The Herald Angels Sing
6. Oh Holy Night
7. Joy To The World
8. It Came Upon A Midnight Clear
9. Come To The Stable Tonight
10. Angels From The Realms Of Glory
11. Oh Little Town Of Bethlehem
12. While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks
13. The Birthday Of The King


Arc Reactor 5

Time for another remaster from the Arc label, and this is a good one. I remember being very excited about this one when I found a copy and shared it back in 2010. I don't think I knew at the time that this is the sort of oddball recording that the Arc label is known for, but I know now to keep an eye out for that name. I hope all the shares today have been a testament to the breadth and width of this odd label. Anyhow, for those who haven't experienced this share before, imagine yourself at an English pub on Christmas or New Year's and it might have sounded like this. Side one is Christmas and side two is New Year's Eve. Each side is a long track with sound effects and bar chatter mixed in with the songs. New this time around is an option to download the sides as a single track, as well as the sides cut into chunks based on the songs included. Either one is good, so you can't go wrong. This is Ken Stanley And The Pubsters-Christmas At The Red Lion And A Happy New Year Too... (Arc (Canada) AC-15, Stereo).

1. Beer, Beer, Glorious Beer
2. Here's To Good Old Whisky
3. All I Want For Christmas (Is My Two Front Teeth)
4. Musical Limericks
5. The Night Before Christmas
6. Goodnight Ladies
7. Wee Deoch And Doris
8. Auld Sandy's Wee Special
9. The Northern Lights Of Aberdeen
10. The Miner's Dream Of Home
11. Auld Lang Syne

MEGA (Tracks)

MEGA (Uncut)

Arc Reactor 4

This may be the most exciting new share from the Arc label I have for you today. Who doesn't love a little Tijuana Brass sound mixed in with their Christmas music? Everyone does! Or doesn't! Wait, what was the question? OK, let me start over. This next record from the Arc label is a fun one as it features the peppy sound of Tijuana from South of the Border, or at least what everyone thought the sounds from down there would be after Herb Alpert hit the big time with his trumpet. I'm afraid I can't swear that the music here hasn't been released elsewhere under a different name as so frequently happens with these Tijuanabees and their Christmas music. It's a fun listen though, so until we find out it's a rehash of something else, please download and enjoy Bobby Duvalle-Tijuana Christmas Party (Arc (Canada) SAC18, Stereo). Note that Arc also had at least one other entry in the Tijuanabee sweepstakes. I first shared that other one in 2011 with you (but you have to go to 2018 for a working download).

1. Jingle Bell Rock
2. Tijuana Bells
3. White Christmas
4. Winter Wonderland
5. Frosty, The Snowman
6. The Happy Snowflake
7. The Christmas Song
8. Let It Snow
9. Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer
10. Santa Claus Is Coming To Town


Have A Joyous Christmas!

I've got a little something different for you here, something I'm hoping you'll enjoy. I love to try and collect all the records in a series almost as much as I love Christmas music, so show me a series of Christmas records and I want to try and get the whole set. Between 1967 and 1973, Columbia put together a series of seven Christmas albums sponsored by The Beneficial Finance System and sold in support of The Senior Concert Orchestra. Much of the material on these records duplicated Columbia's other Christmas comps of the time, most notably the infamous Goodyear series. But this series also included some custom recordings from the aforementioned Senior Concert Orchestra and a couple of other associated artists. This orchestra was a group that supported musicians as they aged out of their usual employment venues and helped to keep them active in the music scene. You can imagine the talent that would accumulate in such a group, and I think that's evident in these recordings. Also showing up in this series are a choral group calling themselves The Beneficial Singers, named after the sponsors of the records. I suspect that they are actually the same group who are billed on Volume 3 as The Senior Concert Choir, they were just renamed. But that's just speculation on my part, I really have no idea. Anyhow, I've taken all the recordings by these three groups and created a large compilation of music that's not been reissued in any form to my knowledge. There's some minor track duplication, especially in the frequent medleys, but it's not too bad. There are a few bonus tracks of artists being backed by the orchestra, and some various Boy Scout troop performances that also seemed unique to this series. I'm bringing it all together for your enjoyment in one single record (though as long as it is, it would need to be a double album!). Also of note is the special title song that was written for the series by Johnny Marks himself, a songwriter known for Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer and many other Christmas songs that you may be familiar with. I wouldn't put this song into that same category but it's catchy. I've put it all together with a snazzy collage of a cover and called it A Joyous Christmas (Ernie (Not Bert), Stereo, 2023). Enjoy!

1. The Senior Concert Orchestra With The Beneficial Singers-Joyous Christmas
2. The Senior Concert Orchestra-Conducted By David Mendoza-God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen; O Tannenbaum
3. The Senior Concert Orchestra-Old-Fashioned Christmas: O Come, All Ye Faithful; Lo, How A Rose Ere Blooming; A-Carolling We Will Go
4. The Senior Concert Orchestra-Conducted By David Mendoza-Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer
5. The Senior Concert Orchestra-Conducted By David Mendoza-Waltz Of The Flowers From The Nutcracker Suite
6. The Senior Concert Orchestra-Conducted By David Mendoza-Skaters' Waltz
7. The Senior Concert Orchestra-Conducted By David Mendoza-Adeste Fidelis
8. The Senior Concert Orchestra-Conducted By David Mendoza-Joy To The World;  Auld Lang Syne
9. The Senior Concert Orchestra-Yuletide Greetings: While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks; Away In A Manger; Angels We Have Heard On High
10. The Senior Concert Orchestra-Conducted By David Mendoza-Memories Of Christmas: Good King Wenceslas; Away In A Manger
11. The Senior Concert Orchestra-Conducted By David Mendoza-The Music Box
12. The Beneficial Singers And The Senior Concert Orchestra-Conducted By David Mendoza-Toyland
13. The Senior Concert Orchestra-Conducted By David Mendoza-Christmas Is Forever, Medley: Here We Come - A Caroling; It Came Upon A Midnight Clear; God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen
14. The Senior Concert Orchestra-Conducted By David Mendoza-Auld Lang Syne
15. The Senior Concert Orchestra-Conducted By David Mendoza-Dance Of The Sugarplum Fairies From The Nutcracker Suite
16. The Senior Concert Orchestra-Conducted By David Mendoza-Salute To Johnny Marks: Holly Jolly Christmas; Rockin' Around The Christmas Tree;  I Heard The Bells On Christmas Day
17. The Senior Concert Orchestra-Conducted By David Mendoza-First Noel; Jingle Bells; Deck The Halls
18. The Senior Concert Orchestra-Conducted By David Mendoza, & The Beneficial Singers-Christmas Fantasy: Jingle Bells; Silent Night; Adeste Fidelis
19. The Senior Concert Orchestra-Petersburg Sleighride
20. The Senior Concert Orchestra-"Danse Des Mirlitons" From The Nutcracker Suite
21. The Senior Concert Orchestra-Conducted By David Mendoza-Holiday Souvenirs: Jolly Old St. Nicholas; O, Tannenbaum; Angels From The Realms Of Glory
22. The Senior Concert Orchestra-Conducted By David Mendoza-Good King Wenceslas
23. The Senior Concert Choir-Yuletide Medley: The First Noel; O Little Town Of Bethlehem; Angels We Have Heard On High
24. The Senior Concert Orchestra-David Mendoza, Conductor-Prayer From The Opera Hansel And Gretel
25. The Senior Concert Orchestra-Conducted By David Mendoza-Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!
26. The Senior Concert Orchestra-Conducted By David Mendoza-Christmas Festival: Deck The Halls; We Three Kings Of Orient Are; I Heard The Bells On Christmas Day
27. The Beneficial Singers-The Lost Chord
28. The Senior Concert Orchestra-Conducted By David Mendoza, Featuring Brenda Lewis, Soprano, Of The Metropolitan Opera-Babes In Toyland
29. The Senior Concert Orchestra-Conducted By David Mendoza-Go Tell It On The Mountain
30. The Senior Concert Orchestra-Conducted By David Mendoza-Hark! The Herald Angels Sing; Deck The Halls With Boughs Of Holly
31. The Senior Concert Orchestra-Conducted By David Mendoza-O Holy Night
32. The Senior Concert Orchestra-David Mendoza, Conductor-Christmas Favorites: We Wish You A Merry Christmas; We Three Kings; Silent Night; Joy To The World
33. The Beneficial Singers-Joyous Christmas (Reprise)
34. Bess Arlene, Soprano, With The Senior Concert Orchestra-Conducted By David Mendoza-Rejoice Greatly From "The Messiah"
35. Eugene Moye, Jr. (Greenwich, Conn., Boys' Club) Cello Solo-Ave Maria
36. Boys' Clubs Of America Choir (Rome, Georgia)-Jingle Bells
37. The Boys' Clubs Of America, Gramercy (N.Y.C.) Boys' Club Choir-We Wish You A Merry Christmas


I know the tags seem to jump back and forth a bit, sometimes including the conductors name and sometimes not, that's just how it was credited on the original issue. I've included the covers of all those original albums for your enjoyment in the download. And please don't ask me to share the full original albums, that music is all out there for you do grab elsewhere, you just might have to pay for it and assemble the original comps yourself. Oh, there's also a note in the comments telling you where each track came from originally. And there were two very nearly identical recordings of Joyous Christmas, I could only tell the difference when I pulled up the WAV files and compared. I only put the one in here. They seemed to reuse the same recording on several of the records, not sure why it seems to have changed one time. Once again, enjoy the music!

Arc Reactor 3

(Warning: Anonymous Content!) OK, onto part three of our trip through Canada via their leading music label, Arc. OK, Arc is probably not the leading label of Canada, but we're going to pretend it is for the time being. This next record listed no artist, and I almost passed it by but I was glad I gave it a spin. It's actually pretty good in that it captures a little bit of the Now Sound of the late Sixties right there in the grooves. You get some very happy singers with some peppy music chugging though twenty songs of Christmas.  They're grouped into long medleys but the music just keeps bouncing along. Three tracks per side may seem short but each track is at least four minutes long with half of them reaching seven minutes, and amazingly enough, I don't find them boring. I think you'll enjoy them too. This is Unknown Artist-Sing A Song Of Christmas (Arc (Canada) AC 33, Stereo, )

1. Jingle Bells; God Rest You Merry Gentlemen; The Holly And The Ivy
2. While Shepherds Watched; See Amid The Winter Snow; Once In Royal David's City; Hark! The Herald Angels Sing
3. Ding Dong Merrily On High; We Three Kings Of Orient Are
4. Silent Night; Away In A Manger; The First Noel
5. Good King Wenceslas; Christians Awake; O Come All Ye Faithful
6. O Little Town Of Bethlehem; It Came Upon The Midnight Clear; Good Christian Men Rejoice; Angels From The Realms Of Glory


Arc Reactor 2

Next up on our tour of the Arc label out of Canada is this LP credited to a Perry Roberts. I have a sneaking suspicion in the back of my mind that Perry Roberts is to Canada as Johnny Kay is to America. He's an artist that may or may not have existed, but his sole purpose in life was to record some soundalike music (mostly sounding like Perry Como, hence the name...) that's been endlessly recycled across many Christmas seasons ever since. I won't swear to it, but I think some of the recordings here are the same as some released here in the US as Johnny Kay. And to make it worse, some of the recordings here are instrumental, so I guess Perry Roberts is also an orchestra. Anyhow, this might be the sort of thing that intrigues you. If so, please give a download and a listen to Perry Roberts-White Christmas And Other Favourites (Arc (Canada) AX-1, Mono)

1. White Christmas
2. Frosty The Snowman
3. I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus
4. There's No Place Like Home For The Holidays
5. Let It Snow
6. Winter Wonderland
7. I'll Be Home For Christmas
8. Silent Night
9. Jingle Bells
10. Santa Claus Is Coming To Town
11. Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer
12. Sleighride


Arc Reactor 1

I feel like I've been lacking in good solid themes for a bit, but I've got a pretty good one for today. All the records I've got here in the pile are on the Arc label, a budget outfit from Canada. They seem to have released something for everyone as I hope you'll see as the day progresses. I start off with an old remaster, something I first shared out back in 2012. It's not the best record ever, but it's not as bad as I remember it. It's clearly a hodge-podge of styles, likely thrown together from scraps of others recording sessions. But if you look hard enough, perhaps you can find something worth listening to. This is The Embassy Chorale And Soloists-Little Drummer Boy And Other Christmas Hits (Arc (Canada) AC 4, Mono). Great spell check fail right there on the cover...

1. Little Drummer Boy
2. Mary's Boy Child
3. Little Donkey
4. Away In The Manger
5. Come Landlord Fill The Flowing Bowl
6. The Village Of St. Bernadette
7. White Christmas
8. Jingle Bells
9. I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus
10. Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer
11. The Twelve Days Of Christmas
12. Bless This House