Central Square Records’ featured albums are all about the holidays By Edward Jack, Manager, Central Square Records
The holiday season in Seaside is always filled with great friends, get-togethers, and of course, music. Our annual Central Square Records Holiday Potluck is also an event that sums up all of the things we love about the holidays: seeing friends, spinning classic holiday records and eating our weight in delicious food. Experiencing the holidays at Central Square Records is a great opportunity to reunite with our locals and out-of-town customers alike, while holiday music of all styles fills the store. Check out our Facebook page (Central Square Records) for more details as the event draws near.
We all have our favorite holiday albums, from classic recording we grew up with, or new reinterpretations of time-honored classics. Here are a few albums we have come to love over the years, some recorded before we were born, others coming out just a few years ago. Happy Holidays from Central Square Records!
Vince Guaraldi Trio – “A Charlie Brown Christmas”
“A Charlie Brown Christmas” is one of the most popular holiday recording in musical history, combining several original compositions (“Christmas Time Is Here”) with covers of well-known traditional Christmas songs (“O Tannenbaum,” “The Christmas Song”). Featuring the cool, swinging jazz style of Guaraldi’s trio with the children’s vocal choir, “A Charlie Brown Christmas” appeals to adults and kids alike. This album always seems to be the first record to make it on the turntable at the advent of the holiday season.
Various Artists “Ultra Lounge Christmas Cocktails” Volumes 1-3
If you want a great holiday collection while entertaining during this festive season, “Ultra Lounge Christmas Cocktails” compilations are a perfect fit. Featuring crooners, divas, and instrumentalists from the ‘60s era, these collections cull classic holiday tunes like Bing Crosby’s “Frosty the Snowman” to more contemporary renditions like Julie London’s sultry “I’d Like You For Christmas,” or Bob Atcher & the Dinning Sisters tropical version of “Christmas Island.” Other artists include Lou Rawls, Peggy Lee, Nancy Wilson to name a few; the kicker, however is an uproarious version of “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” featuring comic crooner Sammy Davis Jr. waxing hilarious with jazz diva Carmen Mcrae, who desperately tries to hold it together during this raucous holiday take.
Frank Sinatra “Ultimate Christmas”
This recent reissue of Sinatra’s selection of the most popular holiday tunes is a perfect soundtrack for the Christmas season. What’s not to love about the legendary vocalist taking on Christmas classics like “The Christmas Waltz,” “It Came Upon A Midnight Clear,” and “The Little Drummer Boy.” Frank even brings his family in on a few selections, most notably “The Bells of Christmas (Greensleeves)” featuring his children Nancy, Christina, and Frank, Jr. This is a must have for those who love Sinatra’s smooth delivery of some of the finest selections from the Christmas songbook.
Jimmy Smith “Christmas ’64”
Legendary jazz organist Jimmy Smith released this swinging collection of Christmas songs back in 1964, and they still sound as cool as they did when first released. Playing both with his standard trio, featuring guitarist Kenny Burrell, (“The Christmas Song,” “Jingle Bells”) as well as a big band orchestra (“God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen,” “White Christmas”), Smith creates both intimate moments as well as grand, high-energy performances. Whether listening intently to Smith’s mastery of the B-3 organ, or letting it set the mood while playing in the background, you can’t go wrong with this holiday masterpiece.
Various Artists “Verve Remixed Christmas”
For those seeking a less traditional holiday album with an eccentric appeal, “Verve Remixed Christmas” has it all. The concept is to take the original recordings from the Verve label, and have the foremost DJ’s of the day remix them in their own signature style. Highlights include the comically festive version of Louis Armstrong’s “Zat You, Santa Claus?” funkily remixed by the Heavy; a reggaton remix of Billie Holiday’s version of “I’ve Got my Love To Keep Me Warm” remixed by YesKing; and the sublime “Chilly Winds” sung by Nina Simone, reworked by Fink. For those trying to mix it up this holiday season, this one is spot on.
And look out for these new releases for the upcoming holiday season, too: John Legend “A Legendary Christmas,” Eric Clapton “Happy Xmas” and Pentatonix “This Is Christmas.”
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Tivoli Pal Portable Bluetooth Speaker
This holiday season Central Square Records is showcasing the Tivoli Pal Portable Bluetooth Speaker, complete with AM/FM tuner, auxiliary input, and bluetooth compatibility, all powered by a rechargeable NiMH battery. So you can have high-quality sound wireless sound, with extreme portability. Perfect for the audiophile in your life who thinks they have seen it all.