My Holiday

My Holiday

4.7 4
by Mindy Smith
     
 

Mindy Smith's first Christmas album is quite the seductive affair. Her feathery, coquettish voice is imbued with a smoky sensuality that lends a lusty edge even to spiritually oriented originals such as the languid "Follow the Shepherd Home," a co-write with Chely Wright (who also penned the gently swinging wintry love song "It Really Is a Wonderful Life").… See more details below

Overview

Mindy Smith's first Christmas album is quite the seductive affair. Her feathery, coquettish voice is imbued with a smoky sensuality that lends a lusty edge even to spiritually oriented originals such as the languid "Follow the Shepherd Home," a co-write with Chely Wright (who also penned the gently swinging wintry love song "It Really Is a Wonderful Life"). Co-produced by Smith, My Holiday takes an intimate, fireside approach to Yuletide balladry, as she surrounds herself with a tight, basic band lineup of no small repute. The foundation is Eddie Bayers on drums, Michael Rhodes on bass, Bryan Sutton on acoustic guitar, Kenny Vaughn on electric guitar, Lex Price on mandola, and Steve Cox on piano, supplemented at times by other Nashville studio stalwarts. Smith keeps the emotions tantalizingly reined in, the better to achieve an atmosphere at once sultry and saintly. It's a terrific balancing act, and she never wavers on the high wire. Her dreamy, saloon-style take on "What Are You Doing New Year's Eve?" boasts an attitude that's somewhere between melancholy and doe-eyed optimism. She follows it with a plaintive, rustic treatment of "Away in a Manger," with Allison Krauss adding a crystalline harmony vocal. At the end, Smith cuts loose, unambiguously, on her original tune "Come Around." A forthright appeal to children, fathers, and mothers to "put all your faith in the Father," it features Will Kimbrough on guitar, fashioning the finest Roger McGuinn lines this side of, well, Roger McGuinn, in a driving, swirling, decidedly Byrds-ish arrangement. May we all have such holidays as this.

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Mark Deming
Christmas albums are usually the province of veteran artists wanting to make all warm and fuzzy, or pop stars eager to reap some end-of-the-year royalties, which makes the appearance of Mindy Smith's My Holiday a bit of a surprise. My Holiday is only the third album from the young singer/songwriter, and while she's established a loyal following, she's hardly topping the charts just yet. However, while most holiday albums sounds like they were tossed off without a much of an effort, My Holiday sounds like it has some real business being Smith's third album. Smith's original tunes on this set are sweetly heartfelt without getting sticky, and the child's eye images of "Santa Will Find You," the real world love song "I Know The Reason" and the simple but fervent faith expressed in "Come Around" and "Follow The Shepherd Home" are superb examples of Smith's very real gifts as a songwriter. Smith isn't afraid to put her stamp on the Christmas standards included on this set; she reworks the vocal melody to "Away in a Manger" with impressive results, there's a lovely sense of longing in her take on "What Are You Doing New Year's Eve," and she strips away the outer layers of sentimentality from "I'll Be Home for Christmas" without robbing it of its power. My Holiday is dominated by simple, tasteful (mostly) acoustic arrangements that dovetail nicely with Smith's rich whisper of a voice, and the result is an album that's every bit as compelling and well-crafted as her first two discs, and might even stay in your personal playlist after the holiday decorations make their inevitable return to the attic.

Product Details

Release Date:
10/09/2007
Label:
Vanguard Records
UPC:
0015707983822
catalogNumber:
79838
Rank:
290864

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Tracks

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

Mindy Smith   Primary Artist,Vocal Harmony
Alison Krauss   Vocal Harmony
Eric Darken   Vibes
Scott Baggett   Acoustic Guitar,finger cymbals
Eddie Bayers   Drums
Steve Buckingham   Percussion,Tambourine
Steve Cox   Piano
Paul Franklin   Pedal Steel Guitar
Paul Griffith   Drums
Sam Levine   Clarinet
Michael Rhodes   Bass
Kenny Vaughan   Electric Guitar
Chely Wright   Vocal Harmony
Andrea Zonn   Violin,Viola
Will Kimbrough   Electric Guitar
David Jacques   Bass
Bryan Sutton   Acoustic Guitar
Jen Cohen   Vocal Harmony
Lex Price   Mandola
Greg Woodruff   Vocal Harmony

Technical Credits

Buck Ram   Composer
Frank Loesser   Composer
Scott Baggett   Engineer
Steve Buckingham   Producer,Audio Production
Neal Cappellino   Engineer
Kim Gannon   Composer
Walter Kent   Composer
Jay Livingston   Composer
Gary Paczosa   Engineer
Chely Wright   Composer
Georgette Cartwright   Creative Services Coordinator
Traditional   Composer
Thad Cockrell   Composer,Duet
John Thomas McFarland   Composer
Mindy Smith   Arranger,Composer,Producer,Author,Audio Production
Eric Tonkin   Engineer

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