This Christmas

( 2 )

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble
When your first single from the Grease album, the biggest movie musical of all time, is chart-topping “You’re the One That I Want, and it becomes the best-selling duet in pop music history - that’s a tough act to follow. But almost 35 years later, John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John have combined their iconic voices for This Christmas, available November 13 from Universal Music Enterprises. A true labor of love made specifically for “the giving season,” Travolta and Newton-John will donate the artist proceeds from the album equally to their respective charities, the Jett Travolta Foundation and the Olivia Newton-John Cancer and Wellness Centre ...
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble
When your first single from the Grease album, the biggest movie musical of all time, is chart-topping “You’re the One That I Want, and it becomes the best-selling duet in pop music history - that’s a tough act to follow. But almost 35 years later, John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John have combined their iconic voices for This Christmas, available November 13 from Universal Music Enterprises. A true labor of love made specifically for “the giving season,” Travolta and Newton-John will donate the artist proceeds from the album equally to their respective charities, the Jett Travolta Foundation and the Olivia Newton-John Cancer and Wellness Centre in Melbourne, Australia.

One of the highlights of the album is the one original song, the aptly titled “I Think You Might Like It.” This is the sequel to John and Olivia’s Grease smash, “You’re the One That I Want,” a new tune by that song’s writer/producer John Farrar, marking yet another This Christmas-spawned reunion. “John Farrar was just as hard on me now as he was then,” laughs Travolta. “We went for perfection on it.” “It was really fun to do that,” says Olivia. “If it wasn’t for that song, we wouldn’t be here talking about it 30 years later.”

Produced by veteran keyboardist/arranger/orchestrator Randy Waldman, This Christmas is the audio equivalent of those classic network TV specials hosted from the stars’ homes, an intimate, warm set of traditional holiday songs from an all-star lineup that includes Barbra Streisand (“I’ll Be Home for Christmas”), Tony Bennett and the Count Basie Orchestra (“Winter Wonderland”), James Taylor (“Deck the Halls”), Chick Corea (“This Christmas”), Kenny G (“Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree”), Cliff Richard (“Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas”) and the original “I Think You Might Like It” by writer/producer John Farrar.

The idea for the collection came from Travolta after receiving a Christmastime text from his old friend Olivia noting that their 1978 smash, “You’re the One That I Want,” had just become the best-selling duet in pop music history. “From the moment we decided to do this, magic happened,” says Travolta. “Everyone we contacted agreed to do it.”

“It just fell into place,” added Newton-John, a four-time Grammy® winner, who has scored five No. 1 singles and two chart-topping albums, selling a total of more than 100 million albums worldwide. “With our busy schedules, I don’t know how we got it done. John and I have always connected. That’s never gone away. When we’re together, we have a good laugh and feel bonded to one another. We’ve been through some amazing experiences together.”

“My desire was to make This Christmas an intimate album, not something too ostentatious or showy,” says Travolta, who early in his career was featured as an actor/singer/dancer with the touring company of Grease. “I wanted people to be able to play it around the house or in the car during the holidays, and make us part of your celebration. Gathering around house listening to Christmas music has always been an important part of that time of the year to my family.”

But the real importance of This Christmas is the money it will raise to fund Travolta and Newton-John’s charities - one to combat children’s disabilities, including autism and seizures, named after John’s late son, Jett; the other to help search for a cure for cancer and to help victims of the disease.

“We all felt a wonderful, joyful energy while recording this album,” adds Olivia. “We want to make a lot of people smile and happy. It’s a project that we’re hoping turns into a perennial, one that can continue to raise money for these causes year after year, a gift that keeps on giving.”
All Music Guide - Stephen Thomas Erlewine
Longtime friends and long-ago Grease co-stars John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John chose to team up once again in 2012, this time for a Christmas album designed to benefit their respective charities, the Olivia Newton-John Cancer & Wellness Center and the Jett Travolta Foundation. So, This Christmas is camp for a cause, a cheerful celebration of the familiar trappings of the season. There are friends by the busload -- Cliff Richard, Chick Corea, Barbra Streisand, Kenny G, Tony Bennett, and James Taylor all pop in for a tune -- there's a production as clean and crisp as newly fallen snow, there's as much cheesy Christmas cheer as a stack of reindeer sweaters sitting underneath a plastic Christmas tree. Musically, the only left turn arrives in the amiably rocking new song "I Think You Might Like It" -- its guitars sound randier than the rest of the record but that's certainly on a relative scale -- otherwise these are songs you know by heart, all sung with a visible smile that's either ingratiating or insufferably, unwittingly campy, depending on your perspective. The thing of it is, This Christmas winds up serving both audiences equally well: it'll brighten the season of fans who take this at face value, and for those looking for a ridiculous dose of celeb Christmas cheer, Travolta's asides to "Liv" will more than fulfill their needs.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 11/13/2012
  • Label: Hip-O Records
  • UPC: 602537174553
  • Catalog Number: 001762402
  • Sales rank: 302,218

Album Credits

Performance Credits
John Travolta Primary Artist
Kenny G Tenor Saxophone
Monty Alexander Piano, Group Member
Larry Goldings Harmonium
David Lasley Background Vocals
Bruce Dukov Violin, Concert Master, Soloist
John Farrar Guitar
Charlie Bisharat Fiddle, Violin, Soloist
Gregg Bissonette Drums
Rev. Dave Boruff Alto Saxophone, Tenor Saxophone, Group Member
Jacqueline Brand Violin
Darius Campo Violin
George Doering Guitar
Christine Ermacoff Celli
Brandon Fields Baritone Saxophone, Group Member
Chuck Findley Trumpet, Group Member
Juliann French Violin
Dan Higgins Alto Saxophone
Paula Hochhalter Celli
Harold Jones Drums, Group Member
Paul Langosch Bass, Group Member
Kate Markowitz Background Vocals
Bob McChesney Trombone, Soloist, Group Member
Robin Olson Violin
Carol Pool Violin
Gray Sargent Guitar, Group Member
Randy Waldman Organ, Piano, Conductor, fender rhodes, Synthesizer Bass
Ken Yerke Violin
Gayle Levant Harp
Arnold McCuller Background Vocals
Carlos del Puerto Bass
Natalie Leggett Violin
Shawn Mann Viola
Sam Farrar Bass
Timothy Loo Cello, Celli, Soloist
Teddy Campbell Drums
Christian Hebel Violin
Mike Fisher Percussion
Jen Kuhn Celli
Alwyn Wright Violin
Caroline Buckman Viola
Tereza Stanislav Violin
Yelena Yegoryan Violin
Robert Brophy Viola
Stuart Clark Clarinet
Tamara Hatwan Violin
Heather Clark Flute
Bernadette Avila Oboe
Charley Davis Trumpet, Group Member
Carrie Holzman Viola
John Robinson Drums
Lisa Donglinger Violin
Chris Bleuth Irish Whistle
Anatoly Rosinski Violin
The Christmas Horns Horn
Technical Credits
Irving Berlin Composer
James Taylor Arranger, Producer
Vince Guaraldi Composer
Mel Tormé Composer
John Farrar Arranger, Composer, Producer
Buck Ram Composer
Frank Loesser Composer
Dae Bennett Engineer
Felix Bernard Composer
Sammy Cahn Composer
Dave Grusin Arranger, Producer
Kim Gannon Composer
Walter Kent Composer
Johnny Marks Composer
Hugh Martin Composer
Bob McChesney Digital Editing
Don Murray Engineer
Lee Musiker Musical Director
Kenny O'Brien Digital Editing
Phil Ramone Producer
Jule Styne Composer
Randy Waldman Arranger, Producer, Horn Arrangements
Dick Smith Composer
Erick Labson Mastering
Ralph Blane Composer
Lee Mendelson Composer
Woody Woodruff Engineer
Nadine McKinnor Composer
Sam Farrar Programming
Mark Hartley Executive Producer
Traditional Composer
Darwin Best Engineer
Bill Hughes Orchestra Director
Christine Wu Digital Editing
Bob Wells Composer
Joe Wolmuth Digital Editing
Donnie Pitts Composer
Aaron Woodward Additional Production
The Tony Bennett Quartet Instrumentation
The Christmas Horn Section Instrumentation
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 2 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted November 13, 2012

    The novelty of the "Grease" reunion and the charities

    The novelty of the "Grease" reunion and the charities aside, this album is what Christmas is all about: light-hearted, spirited, and unadulterated FUN! And not only to hear John & Olivia together again, but to be joined by the likes of Barbra Streisand, James Taylor, and Tony Bennett! "I Think You Might Like It" will absolutely stick in your head and bring a smile to your face, and you can't help but picture "Danny" and "Sandy" cozying up on a stormy night when it's "Cold Outside." Forget the seriousness of the holiday and just enjoy some pure light fun. Merry Christmas indeed!

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted December 31, 2012

    This album, created to raise money for Travolta's and Newton-Joh

    This album, created to raise money for Travolta's and Newton-John's charities, has taken much unearned derision for reasons that are unclear to me.  The CD is an enjoyable holiday listen, and a cute follow-up to the pairing of these two performers over 3 decades after the release of Grease.  Good fun!  

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews