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Title: Paul Mauriat: Petit Papa Noel (Little Santa Claus)
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Christmas Music Guru
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Rank:Honorary Member

Status: Lawrence F. Arcuri Owner/Webmaster of TheYuleLog.com
Posts: 3493

(Date Posted:08/23/2009 00:25)




 


Paul Mauriat: That totally hip and debonair Frenchman known for his great easy listening LPs in the 1960s and 1970s with those totally cuckoo-groovy album covers.

His contribution to the Christmas music genre originally came in his native France in 1964 with the release of the LP, Les Satellites Chantent Noel, which was released by Bel-Air Records. Then, in 1967, this classic Christmas LP was re-released on the Philips record label in France as Noels, and in the United States simply as The Christmas Album. Mr. Mauriat’s great version of Jingle Bells from this LP is selection #21 on the Yule Log soundtrack; however, posted here for your listening enjoyment is his splendid rendition of the traditional French carol, Petit Papa Noel:






No tribute to Paul Mauriat would be complete without posting his worldwide mega smash hit from 1968, Love Is Blue. The song was #1 for five consecutive weeks on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, and the corresponding album it was on, Blooming Hits, was also #1 for five consecutive weeks on the Billboard Top Pop Albums chart. This tremendous song is not only one of my favorite instrumentals of all-time, but indeed, it is one of my favorite songs of all-time, period. By the way, to this day, Mr. Mauriat is the only French artist ever to top the Billboard Hot 100 chart. So, here without further ado, is the great classic Love Is Blue:






And as a bonus, I just had to post one of Mr. Mauriat's rockin’ and rollin’ instrumental pop covers; it’s his outstanding interpretation of the Simon and Garfunkel hit, Mrs. Robinson:







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Lawrence F. "Chip" Arcuri
Owner/Webmaster | The Yule Log.com

Christmas Always
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Posts:1110

RE:Paul Mauriat: Petit Papa Noel (Little Santa Claus)
(Date Posted:08/23/2009 07:21)

Hi Chip,

Thanks for Spotlighting Paul Mauriat.  You don't hear "Love Is Blue" (L'Amour Est Bleu) on the radio much anymore though www.AM740.ca  CFZM 740 AM on the radio, still plays it at least once a week.  Though it is in MONO it is still a beautiful piece of music to listen to.

Thanks again for Spotlighting Paul Mauriat.
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Christmas Isn't Just A Day In December, It's A Way Of Life
Susan

Christmas Music Guru
2# 



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Status: Lawrence F. Arcuri Owner/Webmaster of TheYuleLog.com
Posts:3493

RE:Paul Mauriat: Petit Papa Noel (Little Santa Claus)
(Date Posted:08/23/2009 19:24)


Sure thing, Susan.

By the way, with regard to Love Is Blue, be aware that Paul Mauriat re-recorded the song several times over the years, but none were ever as good as his original version. Hopefully, the radio station you are listening to is playing the original. Of course, even if they are, the main drawback with the AM radio broadcast, like you said, is that it is in mono. Unfortunately, after FM radio surpassed AM radio as the preferred broadcast radio band in the late 1970s, the progression toward AM stereo radio pretty much came to a halt.

Here in the New York metro area, the only radio station that still occasionally plays Love Is Blue is CBS-FM -- and thankfully, it is the original version and in full stereo.


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Lawrence F. "Chip" Arcuri
Owner/Webmaster | The Yule Log.com

Christmas Always
3# 



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Posts:1110

RE:Paul Mauriat: Petit Papa Noel (Little Santa Claus)
(Date Posted:08/24/2009 07:13)

Hi Chip,

I do have the 45 of this song somewhere in my collection of 45 RPM's  I have had it since I was a about 9 or 10, so I believe it is the original version.  It isn't immediately within my grasp as my 45's are still packed away and I haven't looked at them in a few years.  When they play the song on CFZM, to me it does sound like the original.  Though they also have a live stream, it unfortunately in MONO too.

I am not an expert, but I remember something about when they were trying to make the AM Band Stereo.  One scenario would be that you would need 2 receivers tuned slightly differently near the same frequency.  1 to receive the left audio and 1 to receive the right audio.
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Christmas Isn't Just A Day In December, It's A Way Of Life
Susan

Christmas Music Guru
4# 



Rank:Honorary Member

Status: Lawrence F. Arcuri Owner/Webmaster of TheYuleLog.com
Posts:3493

RE:Paul Mauriat: Petit Papa Noel (Little Santa Claus)
(Date Posted:08/24/2009 16:15)


That's exactly right, Susan. What you alluded to was one of the early experiments for AM stereo; however, for obvious reasons, this system was not very practical. Subsequent to this initial experimental concept, a system for AM stereo was perfected so that it could be broadcast on standard AM receivers, but by that time, interest in AM stereo had waned considerably as a result of the surge in the popularity of FM stereo.

By the way, if you've had your single of Love Is Blue since you were about 10 years old, then I guarantee you (knowing how old you are) that it is the original 1968 version. Mr. Mauriat did not record his first remake of the song until well into the 1970s. By the way, there are several Paul Mauriat compilations out there that include Love Is Blue, but none of them have the original version of the song. This is yet another case of Universal Music Group (the parent company of Polygram Records -- which now owns the rights to the Philips masters) dropping the ball once again. In fact, if you look at some of the customer reviews of these compilation CDs on Amazon, you will see several discerning folks complaining that the version of Love Is Blue on the CD is not the original. Quite frankly, I really don't know what UMG's problem is -- I only know that they have some serious issues, so let's not even go there. Let me just tell you how the original version of this song got back in print: Gordon Anderson at Collectors' Choice Music, that's how. In 2006, he miraculously secured from UMG the rights to print the original LP the song was released on, Blooming Hits. UMG should have released this album on their own a long time ago, but they just seem to have a reticence for releasing original LPs -- even ones that were #1 on the charts, as this LP was for 5 consecutive weeks! Instead, they seem to have a penchant for compilations -- but as I mentioned earlier, even those leave a lot to be desired. But what's even worse about UMG, as I have mentioned several times before on the message board, is that even when a reissue company like Collectors' Choice Music expresses an interest in printing one of the precious LPs in their archives, they are not very cooperative. And that fact is clearly stated in the first sentence of the following blurb that was posted on the Collectors' Choice Music website; I copied and pasted it below for your convenience:


We've been trying to license this album for years; it includes the ever-seductive 1968 hit 'Love Is Blue', which has to rank as one of THE great instrumental hits of the '60s, and in fact was the first instrumental to top the charts since the Tornados' 'Telstar' way back in 1962! The album also stayed on top of the charts for five weeks, and that we've finally been able to land it exclusively for our 'Collectors' Choice Music' label is almost as big a surprise as the hit must have been for French arranger Paul Mauriat himself, whose previous three albums for Philips had been greeted with indifference by the record-buying public. But he sure did bottle lightning here; the melody alone is irresistible, but Mauriat's deft use of harpsichord, horns, strings and an ever so slightly rocking beat creates sweet ear candy for pop music lovers of all ages and stripes (and the album cover has a certain 'je ne sais quoi', too)! Also includes beautifully-arranged and orchestrated versions of 'Somethin' Stupid; Penny Lane; This Is My Song; Seuls au Monde (Alone in the World); Inch Allah; There's a Kind of Hush (All over the World); Puppet on a String; Adieu a la Nait (Adieu to the Night)', and 'Mama'.



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Lawrence F. "Chip" Arcuri
Owner/Webmaster | The Yule Log.com

Motown Mike
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Rank:Platinum

Posts:239

RE:Paul Mauriat: Petit Papa Noel (Little Santa Claus)
(Date Posted:09/11/2009 19:04)

The original recording of "Love Is Blue" also turned up on this compilation CD released just this year, by Britain's Ace Records label:

http://www.amazon.com/Golden-Age-American-Popular-Music/dp/B001UXJQBA

Getting back to Mauriat's Christmas album, Chip, can you tell me whether the 1995 Universal Special Markets CD A Paul Mauriat Christmas uses the same recordings as the original Philips LP?

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Christmas Music Guru
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Rank:Honorary Member

Status: Lawrence F. Arcuri Owner/Webmaster of TheYuleLog.com
Posts:3493

RE:Paul Mauriat: Petit Papa Noel (Little Santa Claus)
(Date Posted:09/12/2009 01:07)


Mike, 

I checked the song on the CD you gave a link to and it is definitely the original version of Love Is Blue; kudos to Ace Records in the United Kingdom for releasing the original and not a re-recorded version on their compilation.

And yes, I can also confirm for you that all of the songs released on the 1995 CD, A Paul Mauriat Christmas, are indeed from the original Philips Records LP. However, there are 3 problems with this reissue CDfirst, it only includes 10 of the original 12 songs from the album; second, the songs are not presented in the same order as they were on the original LP; third, Universal Music did not use the original album cover artwork. As I have said previously on the message board, UMG (Universal Music Group) has an absolute reticence in reissuing original LPs on CD, preferring instead these inferior compilations -- and even they don't stay in print for very long, as was the case with this Paul Mauriat CD. This has been their odious track record for years, and I am quite challenged to find anything nice to say about them. This is especially the case right now as they continue to stonewall Gordon Anderson's effort to release Mantovani's Christmas Carols LP on CD. If a deal isn't struck by the end of this month, there will be no Mantovani reissue CD this year. Let's hope UMG can just this once get their act together and surprise us. 


 
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Owner/Webmaster | The Yule Log.com

Kringleling
7# 



Rank:Bronze

Posts:28

RE:Paul Mauriat: Petit Papa Noel (Little Santa Claus)
(Date Posted:11/06/2014 14:05)

For those that are interested, I just spotted this on British re-issue label Dutton Vocalion's website:

http://www.duttonvocalion.co.uk/proddetail.asp?prod=CDLK4544&cat=364

Looks like a worthwhile release if not just for the bonus tracks. 
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Christmas Music Guru
8# 



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Status: Lawrence F. Arcuri Owner/Webmaster of TheYuleLog.com
Posts:3493

RE:Paul Mauriat: Petit Papa Noel (Little Santa Claus)
(Date Posted:11/06/2014 22:13)


Yes, it's definitely worth buying; but first and foremost for the album itself (#69 in my Top 500); and secondly for the bonus tracks.

This is the first time that the album has been released in its entirety on CD. The 1994 PolyGram reissue was abridged (only 10 of the 12 tracks).


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Lawrence F. "Chip" Arcuri
Owner/Webmaster | The Yule Log.com

Strider77
9# 



Rank:Gold

Posts:115

RE:Paul Mauriat: Petit Papa Noel (Little Santa Claus)
(Date Posted:11/07/2014 00:05)

Chip,


Please correct me if I am wrong, but I believe that this is the second time that this album has been released in it's entirety on CD.  The first being Joyeux Noel Avec Paul Mauriat, Philips PHCA-131 released in Japan as listed here on Amazon.com.

That release contained the same bonus tracks as the Dutton Vocalion release with the addition of the song Snow Desert from 1977.  Considering the cost of trying to obtain the Philips release, I would say that the Dutton Vocalion release is an absolute steal at that price point.

-Perry
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Christmas Music Guru
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Status: Lawrence F. Arcuri Owner/Webmaster of TheYuleLog.com
Posts:3493

RE:Paul Mauriat: Petit Papa Noel (Little Santa Claus)
(Date Posted:11/07/2014 00:52)


Gadzooks; that's absolutely correct, Perry! I'm not sure how the hell this one slipped under my normally impenetrable radar, as I never knew of this 1992 Japanese import CD. Although, I guess it's probably better that I didn't, because if I had, I would have definitely paid the big bucks that copies are probably going for on eBay. So because of my ignorance, I saved a lot of money.

That's for bringing this to my attention. I will definitely add the information about this CD release to my Christmas album research notes.



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Lawrence F. "Chip" Arcuri
Owner/Webmaster | The Yule Log.com

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