Merry Little Christmas

A Merry Little Christmas

4.8 6
by Linda Ronstadt
     
 

For her first holiday album, Linda Ronstadt draws on her love for traditional American standards -- a sound she successfully explored in the mid-'80s with Nelson Riddle's orchestra -- and her well-tuned ear for church chorales. She gives the 14 songs here a loving treatment, lacing the first half with lush string arrangements, mellow…  See more details below

Overview

For her first holiday album, Linda Ronstadt draws on her love for traditional American standards -- a sound she successfully explored in the mid-'80s with Nelson Riddle's orchestra -- and her well-tuned ear for church chorales. She gives the 14 songs here a loving treatment, lacing the first half with lush string arrangements, mellow horns, billowy harmonies, and jazzy piano tinkling while rendering the later tracks in instrumentally stark but vocally rich settings more befitting a church dais than a Broadway stage. Many of the tunes here will be familiar to even casual carolers, including a colorful reading of the Nat "King" Cole chestnut "The Christmas Song," a delicate "Away in a Manger," and a choral "Silent Night." An easy standout is a dramatic rendition of "White Christmas," with Ronstadt duetting with Rosemary Clooney; standards fans will also enjoy how Ronstadt's startling soprano gives "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" a surprisingly fresh edge. Another unexpected turn is her take on Joni Mitchell's lovely "River" (originally from Blue), a piano-based ballad with a mournful tone. Those looking for something to uplift their spirits over the holidays will do well to turn to Ronstadt's gorgeous a cappella versions of "O Come, O Come, Emmanuel" and "Welsh Carol," with choral arrangements provided by the Choir from Tucson, and the Aztec lullaby "Xicochi, Xicochi," with a rich organ backdrop.

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Zac Johnson
A surprising holiday album from Linda Ronstadt, who has chosen to include just a handful of standards and only one song in Spanish. The remainder of the tracks are traditional old English and Welsh Christmas songs, sung in Ronstadt's familiar warm voice. Highlights include a brassy duet with Rosemary Clooney on "White Christmas" and the contemporary "River," which sounds almost like the singer has been listening to a lot of Sarah McLachlan. On the whole, A Merry Little Christmas is a warm window into what Linda Ronstadt considers to be her favorite songs of the season.

Product Details

Release Date:
10/17/2000
Label:
Elektra / Wea
UPC:
0075596257220
catalogNumber:
62572

Related Subjects

Tracks

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

Linda Ronstadt   Primary Artist,Soprano (Vocal)
Stephanie Bennett   Harp
Rosemary Clooney   Track Performer
Peter Matz   Conductor
Jim Taylor   Choir, Chorus,Tenor (Vocal)
Murray Adler   Violin
Dale Anderson   Percussion
Rick Baptist   Trumpet
Natalie Beck   Alto (Vocal)
Charlie Bisharat   Violin
Dick Bolks   Bass,Baritone (Vocal)
Mathew Cooker   Celli
Jim Cox   Celeste
Joel Derouin   Violin
Assa Drori   Violin
Jimmy Ercole   Woodwind
Roger Freeland   Tenor (Vocal)
David Gardner   Bass,Baritone (Vocal)
John Gilutin   Piano
Harris Goldman   Violin
George Graham   Trumpet
Endre Granat   Violin
John Guerin   Drums
Linda Harmon   Choir, Chorus
Dan Higgins   Alto Flute,Woodwind
Greg Huckins   Woodwind
Jim Hughart   Bass
Sheri Izzard   Alto (Vocal)
Peter Kent   Violin
Brian Kilgore   Percussion
Armen Ksadjikian   Celli
Warren Luening   Trumpet
Don Markese   Woodwind
Timothy May   Guitar
Bobbi Page   Alto (Vocal)
Dean Parks   Guitar
Barbara Porter   Violin
Anatoly Rosinsky   Violin
Bob Sanders   Trombone
Bob Sanov   Violin
Tina Soule   Celli
David Stenske   Violin
Sally Stevens   Choir, Chorus
Sheridon Stokes   Woodwind
Joe Stone   Woodwind
Miwako Watanabe   Violin
Chauncey Welsch   Trombone
John Yoakum   English Horn
Paul Fried   Woodwind
Leslie Woodbury   Violin
Susan Chatman   Violin
Marcia Dickstein   Harp
Novi Novog   Viola
Renita Koven   Viola
Suzie Katayama   Celli
Bob Peterson   Violin
Bob Joyce   Bass,Choir, Chorus,Baritone (Vocal)
Norm Hughes   Violin
Carolyn Osborn   Violin
Kerry Katz   Bass,Baritone (Vocal)
Guy Maeda   Tenor (Vocal)
Rudy Stein   Cello,Celli
Michael Horton   Tenor (Vocal)
Mike Geiger   Bass,Baritone (Vocal)
Mimi Granat   Viola
Gary Kuo   Violin
Rachel Purkin   Violin
Paul Klintworth   French Horn
Keith Greene   Viola
Irina Voloshina   Violin
Edie Lehmann Boddicker   Soprano (Vocal)
Bob Magnuson   Bass,Double Bass
Eve Butler   Violin
John Hayhurst   Viola
Valerie DiCarlo   Woodwind
Jim Stärk   Violin
Liane Mautner   Violin
Phillip D. Feather   Woodwind
Steve Richards   Celli
Michele Richards   Violin
Rich Logan   Choir, Chorus
James Thatcher   French Horn
Mario de León   Violin
Matthew Funes   Viola
Teri Eiko Koide   Soprano (Vocal)
Michael Matthews   Celli

Technical Credits

Michael Praetorius   Arranger,Composer
Linda Ronstadt   Arranger
Mel Tormé   Composer
Peter Matz   Orchestral Arrangements,Choir Arrangement
Buck Ram   Composer
Richard White   Arranger,Adaptation
Gaspar Fernandes   Composer
Franz Gruber   Composer
John Boylan   Producer
Kim Gannon   Composer
Paul Grupp   Engineer
Fermin Herrera   translation
Walter Kent   Composer
George Massenburg   Producer,Engineer
Robert Wells   Composer
Kosh   Art Direction
Joseph Mohr   Composer
John Mason Neale   Composer
Traditional   Composer

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Customer Reviews

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A Merry Little Christmas 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
From rock to country to standards to mexican standards. and now Linda offers us this great x-mas collection.the only thing to say is linda feliz navidad y prospero ano nuevo......
Guest More than 1 year ago
I'm happy that Linda finally rleased her new holiday CD. It's great! Especially the smooth duet with Rosemary Clooney on ''White Christmas''. That's nice. I'll be playing it next to my all time classic hits like ''Winter Wonderland'' by Johnny Mathis, ''The Christmas Song'' by Nat King Cole, and my favorite Chicago cabaret artist's like ''Christmas in Chicago'' by Michael Poss, and Karen Mason's ''What The World Needs Now'' medley. Linda has done it again, and it was well worth the wait!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Tired of the SAME OL' TIRED Christmas songs? Well, Linda Ronstadt has turned her magic on the holiday music genre. This CD starts out with 4 standard Christmas fare songs, done in a traditional, Nelson Riddle session, feel. Followed by a nice version of ''River''. From that point on, choral arrangments abound. Not your typical flair, and I was VERY impressed, and drawn into this CD. HIGHLY recommended!
Guest More than 1 year ago
i listen to this even when it's not christmas....i love the gregorian chant sound of the men in the background....she reaches back to her catholic experience ....the south american lullaby, joni mitchell's river, and emanuelle are my favorites.....not your typical christmas album!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I would agree with the other reviewers, this is an excellent Christmas recording by a fine singer. I was puzzled to see "Explicit Lyrics" as this is not something one would see on a Christmas CD, and I have owned this for some time without noticing any. Mystery solved, I think -- if you add this to Windows Media Player and use the "Find Album Info" button, someone who doesn't spell very well made an error on the song "Past Three O'Clock." Otherwise, unless you are offended by someone getting "weak in the knees" in 'River", you can buy this fine album without fear.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Blends some very unusual chorale pieces with pieces that showcase her. Best version of Lo, How A Rose Ere Blooming I have heard - she is a capella with choir as is O Magnum Mysterium. Xicochi, Xicochi is an incredible organ and chorale piece that is extremely hard to find and her version of River, beautiful - haunting and memorable.