Friday, December 2, 2011


YEAR: 1969

LABEL: Columbia

TRACK LISTING: Do You Hear What I Hear? - Robert Goulet, It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas - Leslie Uggams, Angels We Have Heard On High - Percy Faith Orchestra, I'll Be Home For Christmas - Johnny Mathis, The Real Meaning of Christmas - Ray Conniff Singers, Three Wise Me Wise Me Three - Jim Nabors, Christmas Chimes - Andre Kostalanetz Orchestra, Christmas Lullaby - Cary Grant, Handel: For Unto Us A Child Is Born from The Messiah - Eugene Ormandy & the Philadelphia Orchestra & Temple University Choir, Christmas Story - Burl Ives, Silver Bells - Mahalia Jackson, I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus - Ed Sullivan Orchestra, Some Children See Him - Diahann Carroll, What Child Is This? - Mitch Miller & the Gang, Christmas Chopsticks - Bobby Vinton

IMPRESSIONS: This is one of my favourite Christmas albums of all time since I grew up with it. It's probably the one album which immediately floods my mind with memories of my childhood decorating the Christmas tree and setting up the Lionel trains. It contains my favourite versions of several Christmas carols: Robert Goulet's "Do You Hear What I Hear?", Andre Kostalanetz's "Christmas Chimes" (which is actually "Carol of the Bells") and Mahalia Jackson's "Silver Bells" as well as the best recording of Handel's "For Unto Us A Child Is Born" I've ever heard. There's the delightfully cheesy swinging 60's orchestrations of "It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas" and "I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus". However the absolute treasure of the album is Cary Grant's "Christmas Lullaby" which often brings me to tears. Apparently this ultra-rare track was Cary Grant's one and only 45 rpm record made for Columbia for Christmas 1967; it was recorded by Cary after the birth of his daughter with Dyan Cannon as a special message to her.

MY FAVOURITE TRACKS: Every single one of 'em!

FACT SHEET: A VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS VOLUME 3 is a compilation of previously released Christmas music that Columbia Records manufactured exclusively for Grants department store. In total, there were 8 volumes released and they could only be purchased at the long-defunct Grants store.

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