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Christmas With Bing Crosby, Nat King Cole and Dean Martin 320cbr (Big Papi) 1995 Holiday Music (Size: 55.16 MB)
Source: 1995 CD
The review below is for the remastered version. This CD has the same cover but I am not certain it is the remastered one - Big Papi
By Matthew G. Sherwinv VINE VOICE
This album, originally released on Madacy Records, is superior to the original CD in that the quality of the sound is a bit better and we get an extra track, "Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!" by Dean Martin. The artwork is very well done and this CD will delight any fan of the crooners whose voices made the airwaves sizzle in the 20th century; there's not a dud in the bunch here and that's grand. In addition, if you choose to download this album from Amazon rather than buy the CD, download this version of the album and not the original to make sure you get that extra track for the same price--that would be the way to go as of the time I am writing this.
Bing Crosby makes excellent contributions to this album; he sings a terrific rendition of "I Wish You a Merry Christmas;" a medley of "Hark! The Herald Angels Sing" matched with "It Came upon a Midnight Clear" supported by one fantastic choir; another medley of "What Child Is This?" and "The Holly and the Ivy" and still yet another medley of "Pat-A-Pan" and "While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks by Night." Bing has great pipes for these numbers; and that organ sounds heavenly. Bing gets help from the background choir--not that Bing ever needed backup, but they do sound good anyway.
Similarly, Nat "King" Cole does some beautiful ballads here. "O Holy Night" features Nat squarely in the spotlight--and his excellent diction enhances his performance all the more! Nat is in excellent form and he sings with a type of genuine sincerity and sensitivity that I rarely hear and enjoy. Nat's "Joy to the World" has him singing with a backup chorus; and this all holds its own very well. I would have preferred the chorus to have been toned down a bit; but in the mid 20th century they often recorded songs in this style and it's really pretty good as it is. Nat also does "Caroling, Caroling" with panache.
Of course, Dean Martin could do no wrong either; he croons with all the polish of the master he always was and I love it. Dean's "White Christmas" charms me, even though this is usually a melancholy song Dean sings it in a somewhat more upbeat style--and it works! "Winter Wonderland" is beautiful; the lush musical arrangement complements Dean's vocals to perfection--and beyond! "Winter Wonderland" is a fun song and it's easily a highlight of this album. And there's that extra track of Dean singing "Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow;" Dean does this without ever letting go of a single superfluous note.
I'm amazed at the talent on this CD; it's a great one to add to your holiday music collection. The mixture of religious songs and more modern day secular songs works very well; and fans of these fine singers will be thrilled.