New Christmas music in!

by Paul

It's that time of year when the Library begins adding another crop of Christmas themed music CDs to its collection. Here are 8 titles that cover just about the full range of listening preferences and pleasures. I hope you find at least one title from this list worth giving a listen to and enjoying, and perhaps making part of your Holiday traditions.

Moonlight, mistletoe & you

Keb' Mo'

COMPACT DISC CR Keb' Moonlight C77
Blues, Rhythm and Blues, Jazz, Covers

"The inherent friendliness of Moonlight, Mistletoe and You buoys the first holiday album from veteran blues singer Keb' Mo' through its periodic shifts in tone and style. Keb' Mo' has long been known for dabbling in a variety of different American roots music, so the intermingling of blues, jazz, and Tin Pan Alley pop comes as no surprise."

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Keb' Mo's distinctive voice really shines through with a proper amount of Christmas warmth and cheer on an album filled with very smooth, but not horribly over-produced, tracks while staying true to the various musical genre types he explores.
- Paul


Rob Halford

COMPACT DISC CR Halford Celestial L52
Metal, Rock, Covers

"Forty-some years into his life as a verified metal god, it probably seemed like as good a time as any for Rob Halford to make a Christmas album... There's an hefty dose of self-awareness and irony in Celestial, a collection of metalized Christmas carols and traditional holiday tunes, and a few Halford originals in the holiday vein."

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Features some pretty interesting metal interpretations of classic Christmas songs and, as one one expect, certainly with some ear catching guitar hooks and power chords. Sure to make the tinsel on your tannenbaum gleam a little brighter and louder.
- Paul

Christmas in the city

Lea Michele

COMPACT DISC CR Michele Christmas M42
Popular, Vocal, Covers

The "city" in this case is of course New York City, the setting of ever so many holiday song snapshots. Lea Michele of Glee fame, through familiar mid-20th century holiday song traditions, attempts to capture some of that spirit on her first Christmas album, delivering each song and their arrangement with sincere gusto --Based on article from

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Residing very comfortably in the tried and true traditional seasonal "tropesphere", this release certainly adds well to the Christmas music canon populated by crooners of the 50's and 60's. What sets it apart is Lea Michelle's way of infusing each song with an inner wonder and infectious, sincere joyousness.
- Paul

Sugar & booze

Ana Gasteyer

COMPACT DISC CR Gasteyer Sugar H02
Popular, Jazz, Covers

"The new album from the former “Saturday Night Live” cast member features a modern take on the swing and jazz sounds of the '50s and '60s. Gasteyer's performance is a pleasurable treat as she smoothly navigates a delightful assortment of original tracks with a number of holiday classics sprinkled in for good measure."--Herald-Standard.

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Features catchy rhythms evocative of the jazz and pop music of the 50's and early 60's with clever and often humorous lyrics that do push some boundaries, being just naughty enough to add spice to seasonal cocktail listening cocktail mix with out being too strong.
- Paul

Christmas is here!


COMPACT DISC CR Pentatonix Christmas R43
Popular, Vocal, Covers

Three-time Grammy Award winners Pentatonix release their fourth holiday album, which features brand new arrangements of modern and classical seasonal favorites. The first song featured is their cover of Making Christmas from the film The Nightmare Before Christmas.

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Pentatonix have once again released an enjoyable a capella collection of Christmas music, featuring brand new arrangements of familiar favorites. I'm always amazed at what this group comes up with.
- Paul

Christmas : a season of love

Idina Menze

COMPACT DISC CR Menzel Christmas D59
Popular, Vocal, Covers, World

This is the second Christmas album from Menzel, again featuring a strong selection of duets with a featured guest vocalists covering a number of traditonal seasonal songs.

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Menzel's amazing voice is once again worth the price of admission, as with her previous Christmas release she teams up for a number of duets with an A-list of currently popular vocalists. Very centered on recognizable favorites this release does include one not so traditional Hanukkah song, Ocho Kandelikas, which is sung in Ladino.
- Paul

A legendary Christmas

John Legend

COMPACT DISC CR Legend Legendary C92
Popular, Rhythm and Blues, Covers

Grammy-winning superstar John Legend releases his first ever holiday album. There are both classic songs and new tracks, including Bring me love.

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You knew it was only a matter of time before John Legend would release a Holiday album and here it is. Featuring both classic songs and new, original tracks guest artist include Stevie Wonder and Esperanza Spalding (one of my favorite bassists of all time!)
- Paul

The magic of Christmas

Celtic Woman

COMPACT DISC CR Celtic Magic M78
Popular, Celtic, Covers

As with their previous Christmas CD releases, this 14th album by Celtic Woman once again offers up an enjoyable collection of their "best of" traditional songs of the season.

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Celtic Woman once again provide a very enjoyable listening experience with their special treatment of traditional songs of the season. Just a heads up, this group will be appearing at the Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center on the UNI campus on December 22nd.
- Paul