Ghosts Of Christmas Albums Past features Christmas/Holiday albums that have been previously released and are returning in 2016 in new packaging or with new track(s) or in a new format. Or any combination. Straight up reissues are on the naughty list.
Just a few days ago, I fell into one of my moods. Not one of those dreaded, dark moods that seem to come around nearly every year before Thanksgiving mind you but a nostalgic one, specifically a yearning, a hankering to view the television show Love, American Style, with fond memories of watching the show in syndication growing up. A decade or so back, in a similar mood, an internet search yielded an unofficial release of the show on DVD so I ponied up the $40 (twice the price of the album) electronically and within a week, I had many of the episodes on a dozen DVD-Rs (ripped from their airing on TV Land) of the series in my possession.
Then in 2007, half of the episodes from the first season in 1969 saw an official three-disc release as Season One Volume One followed in 2008 by Season One Volume Two, another three-disc set, featuring the other half of the season's episodes. And to date, there have been no other releases from the other five seasons and 200 episodes the show originally aired. So, back to a few days ago, I finished the three discs of Volume One and had watched a couple of the episodes from the first disc of Volume Two but decided to get my chores done before my wife returned home. So I cued up my Ray Conniff playlist of his takes on pop songs from the late Sixties and early Seventies (which always give me a Love, American Style vibe) and set about on my short list of tasks. I mentioned what I was listening to my friend the soft rock kid who alerted me to what would become today's Ghost of Christmas Albums Past from Ray Conniff.
The 2016 double disc set from Real Gone Music features a pair of platinum-selling albums in 1959's Christmas With Conniff and 1962's  We Wish You A Merry Christmas on the first disc and "My Favorite Things" from 1965's Music from Mary Poppins album along with 1965's Here We Come A-Caroling album, which features the Conniff-penned Christmas song "The Real Meaning Of Christmas" among the mostly spiritual carols.
For the budget-conscious holiday music buyer, more than half the songs from The Complete Columbia Christmas Recordings are included on the seventeen track single disc Conniff compilation Christmas Caroling from 1985.
Conniff's arrangements and the festive voices  of his anonymous Singers always remind me of the Firestone presents Your Favorite Christmas Music albums that my parents played every year as I was growing up.

1 comment:

  1. "Love, American Style" takes me back to the summers of '72 and '74 (when I was 7 and 9). We lived overseas, in the Middle East, but came back to the States for vacations every other year. So I didn't see much in the way of TV (aside from "Mighty Mouse" and, occasionally, "The Brady Bunch"; and everything was in black-and-white) except for those vacations. I have distinct memories of watching daytime repeats of "Love, American Style" (along with "Room 222") on my grandparents' large color TV. It seemed so adult to me.

    I have two Ray Conniff albums - "So Much in Love" and "Here We Come A-Carolin'," both of which my parents owned at one time. Just like the TV shows, they take me back.