Title: Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
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(Date Posted:09/26/2009 00:55)


***THIS IS A YULE LOG.COM EXCLUSIVE***





I got word late today from Gordon Anderson (Sr. VP & GM of Collectors' Choice Music) that after all of the hard work, it is a done deal!

UMG (Universal Music Group) has acquiesced, and finally consented to granting his company the full legal rights to print and distribute Mantovani's 1958 "Christmas Carols" LP on CD! It will be released sometime in late November. As soon as I have the exact release date, I'll post it on this thread.

This is the first-ever complete CD release of this classic and legendary Christmas LP anywhere in the world. And if you take all of the CD exclusives that Collectors' Choice Music has released over the years -- including the Hollyridge Strings CD -- they can't combined together even come close to the magnitude of this one single release. It's that huge.

After more than 35 years of collecting and amassing a collection of thousands of Christmas albums, I can tell you categorically that this Mantovani album, along with Percy Faith's "Music Of Christmas" and "Hallelujah" (aka "Music Of Christmas, Vol. 2") are the 3 greatest instrumental Christmas music albums ever recorded. As I have said on the message board before, when it comes to instrumental Christmas music, Number 1 is Percy Faith, a close Number 2 is  Mantovani, and everybody else follows far behind. That's just the way it is, folks.


Getting this magnificent LP back in print is one of two things that I am the most proud that I have done in my life; the other one, of course, being the audio restoration of the Yule Log soundtrack in 2006. I know that Monty (as he was affectionately known by his friends and fans) is smiling up there and I am so happy for his family and extremely gratified that I was able to contribute in a meaningful and substantive way to his legacy as one of the two greatest instrumental Christmas music artists ever; the other one, of course, being the great master, Percy Faith.

Here is an advanced look at the wonderful blurb that Collectors' Choice Music will use to promote the album on their website and in their catalog -- much of which came from information that I had given to Gordon over these last several months as they have been zealously pursuing the album:

With this •Collectors’ Choice Music• release, we put back in print one of the most famous Christmas albums of all time, Mantovani’s 1958 album •Christmas Carols•. In its original mono incarnation released in 1953, this album charted twice; then, with the advent of stereo technology, Mantovani re-recorded it in stereo in 1958, and THAT version of the album went on to chart *four* more times! Yet, that later stereo version (and when you think about it, how can you listen to the sweeping sound of Mantovani in anything but stereo?) has NEVER been on CD, and the mono version has only been on CD overseas in an inferior-sounding version. So, we’re really restoring a perennial holiday favorite here; includes gorgeous versions of •Adeste Fideles; Hark, the Herald Angels Sing; God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen; White Christmas; Good King Wenceslas; O Holy Night; The First Noel; Joy to the World; Silent Night, Holy Night; O Tannenbaum; Midnight Waltz; Nazareth; O Little Town of Bethlehem•, and •Skaters’ Waltz•. Merry Chistmas, everyone!





By the way, at my request, Gordon also secured from Universal Music the rights to use the original London Records album cover artwork. And just to make sure what he had was correct, he sent it to me for my approval; I'm happy to say that it checked out and all systems are go!

And in case you haven't read it, here now is an excerpt from a post that I previously filed on the message board; there couldn't be a more appropriate time to re-post it:

Please do not be fooled by the myriad of Christmas albums you see out there by Mantovani; most of these are by "The Mantovani Orchestra," made with a totally different orchestra and conductor and recorded long after Monty (as he was affectionately known by his friends and fans) was dead. Mantovani had just two Christmas albums for London Records: "Christmas Carols", which was originally recorded and released in 1953 in Mono, then re-recorded and re-released in Stereo in 1958; and the second was "Christmas Greetings From Mantovani," which was released in 1963. The only thing to date that has been released from these two albums has only been compilations.

In addition -- to make matters even more confusing for everyone out there, in 2004 a European record label called Christmas Legends got the rights to the original 1953 Mono version of Monty's first Christmas album, "Christmas Carols". It is available as an import, but I don't recommend it as it is inferior to the 1958 Stereo version both artistically and especially, technologically. The only major difference between the original 1953 Mono version and the later 1958 Stereo version of Mantovani's "Christmas Carols" LP, is that on Side one of the 1953 version The First Noel is the first song and Adeste Fideles is the last song; on the 1958 version it's just the opposite: Adeste Fideles is the first song and The First Noel is the last song -- and I couldn't agree with that change more. When I was a kid in the 1960's (already a Christmas music junkie) and I'd listen to my mother's original Mono recording of this album that she had bought in the early 1950s, I always thought to myself how great it would have been if they had reversed the order of these two songs -- never realizing that when the 1958 Stereo version was recorded and released several years later (after she had bought her original Mono copy) they did exactly just that!

If you are not familiar with Monty's great version of Adeste Fideles, you will not be able to understand why it was so appropriate for them to make this change and start the album this way. The song was a paradigmatic example of his great signature sound: his technique of cascading, soaring and especially tumbling violins. It literally brings tears to your eyes.  As for his version of The First Noel, Monty's arrangement for this song made it a perfect song to complete Side one of the album, again it was quintessential Mantovani. 

Mantovani's music brilliantly reflected something his father taught him as a child: he said to him, "Put feeling into your music, my boy -- music without feeling is little more than a noise." Well, as a result of his unequivocal success, we are now left with a legacy of a lot of great music with a hell of a lot of feeling.

Mantovani ranks second, only to Percy Faith, in producing the greatest instrumental Christmas music ever recorded. In fact, in the original "classic" 3-hour presentation of the Yule Log, when most artists were represented by 1 or 2 songs, he had an impressive 4 songs. This was again, second only to the master, Percy Faith, who had an astounding and unprecedented 10 songs -- and deservedly so, I might add.




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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:09/26/2009 08:30)

Chip,

Congratulations and thank you for getting this done!! Already looking forward to getting my copy in November...Great work!
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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:09/26/2009 08:36)

 WE DID IT!!!!  This is wonderful news!  Another holiday chestnut is with us again!  I've ordered CDs from CCM many times and they're wonderful to deal with.

I receive CCMs monthly catalog and given the late November release date, I hope it will be advertised in the October issue so we can order early.  I'll be watching for it! 

Last year, Percy Faith's "Music of Christmas" returned to my home and this year it will be Mantovani's Christmas Carols (1958).  This is fantastic!  We'll be listening to it when we sit down for Christmas Eve dinner.

A curiosity: Mantovani re-recorded his 1953 "Christmas Carols" LP in stereo in 1958; then Percy Faith re-recorded his 1954 "Music of Christmas" LP in 1959, one year after the Mantovani reissue.  I have no doubt Percy Faith and Mantovani knew each other.  Did the Mantovani reissue of 1958 influence Percy Faith to re-record "Music of Christmas" the following year?   

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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:09/26/2009 17:22)

Chip, this is wonderful news!  I am very excited about this and thank you for your dedication and persistance!

I have only heard parts of this famous album on the Mantovani's Christmas Favourites CD--a compilation of his two Christmas albums--released by London in 1987.  I have always wanted to hear his first album in its entirety and now will finally have the chance! 

Again, thank you for championing beautiful, classic Christmas recordings!

Tom

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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:09/26/2009 21:22)


Justin:

Thanks and enjoy the CD!


Frank: 

The reason why Percy Faith re-recorded Music Of Christmas in 1959 was two-fold: first and foremost, it was because the album was a huge seller and Columbia Records wanted to take advantage of the new Stereo technology; second, and equally important, Percy had just recorded his second Christmas album, Hallelujah (aka Music Of Christmas, Vol. 2), the year before in 1958 in Stereo, so Columbia felt it was only appropriate that he go back into the studio and re-record his first Christmas album in Stereo as well.


Tommy
:

I'm so glad that you will now be able to hear Monty's first Christmas album in its entirety; believe me, you won't be disappointed. 


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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:09/27/2009 21:10)

Collector's Choice truly is a music-lovers friend.
First - The Hollyridge Strings Christmas (2008)
Second - Mantovani's Christmas Carols (2009)
Third - Percy Faith "Music of Christmas" (2010)??

It would be the perfect Christmas triple-header if we get Mr. Faith's remastered stereo recording next year!

A big THANKS to CCM for releasing the great music that they do!

Regards to all,
John
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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:09/28/2009 02:35)


Thanks Johnny, this gives me the perfect opportunity to ask everyone to please send Gordon Anderson a quick thank-you email for releasing this great LP on CD. As I have said before, I believe in positive reinforcement; so I implore all of you to show him how much you appreciate his efforts!

Here is his email address: gordona@ccmusic.com

By the way, I would consider it a personal favor to me if everyone heeded my advice on this. Thank you.


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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:09/28/2009 21:08)

Hi all,

I don't mean to be a party pooper here, because I will purchase the Mantovani CD as well, but so much of Mantovani's Christmas music is already available on CD compilations.  I would've much preferred a release of Geoff Love's A Christmas with Love or Ron Goodwin's Christmas Wonderland.  The 2 David Rose Christmas albums would have made a GREAT Twofer of which CCM is well-known for. 

In addition, Yestermusic has followed suit by ALSO releasing a 2 CD set of Mantovani's Christmas music, titled "Mantovani Christmas".  It is currently available for $11.98.  So now we have a plethora of Mantovani Christmas music.

At any rate, for those of you interested in also purchasing the Yestermusic release, here is the url:

http://www.yestervideo.com/560920.html

Snow Miser
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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:09/28/2009 22:58)


Graig,

Let me start off by asking you to please read the last part of my initial post on this thread, which was an excerpt from a post that I had previously filed on the message board. If you have already read it, then I advise you to read it yet again, because you clearly did not comprehend in the least what I had to say. Please pay special attention to the first paragraph of this excerpt where I talk about the spurious Mantovani music out there by the "The Mantovani Orchestra" with a totally different conductor and orchestra and recorded long after Monty was dead. 

Those who have any true knowledge of Mantovani's Christmas music know full well that he recorded only 2 Christmas albums for London Records with a combined total of 26 tracks. This 2-CD set from YesterMusic that you posted a link for on my message board has a total of 49 tracks -- 23 more tracks than Monty ever recorded. Any guess as to what that suggests? Well, if you haven't guessed it already, that means that a good portion -- if not all -- of this CD compilation is not genuine Mantovani recorded music. Another sure sign that this CD is suspect is that it doesn't even include Monty's great original composition, Christmas Bells. Let me repeat: this 2-CD set has 49 tracks and yet it doesn't even have Christmas Bells! Pasted below is an excerpt from yet another post that I had previously filed on the message board about bogus Mantovani compilations: 
 
One quick way to tell whether a compilation CD you have, or would like to buy, is genuine Mantovani material, is whether it has "Christmas Bells" on it. If it does, you can rest assured that you have genuine Mantovani Christmas music. Also, for those who are not aware of it, Monty wrote that song himself, and it premiered on his 1963 album "Christmas Greetings From MantovanI". It's a spectacular song, and of course, part of the Yule Log presentation.

Let me tell you something, YesterMusic might be able to fool some people, but those who truly know Mantovani's music are most assuredly not fooled, and it's up to people like me to educate others so they don't get swindled. Unfortunately, however, there will still be many folks who will unknowingly buy this CD from YesterMuisc and get shafted. 

Finally Graig, now that you have been enlightened, please do not continue to bemoan the "plethora" of Mantovani Christmas music out there, as most of it, as you now clearly know, is not legitimate.

It goes without saying that my advice to everyone out there is not to waste your money buying this bogus YesterMusic CD and to stick with the real McCoy.



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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:09/29/2009 16:09)

This is fantastic news!

I am a little disappointed that CCM couldn't have reissued Mantovani's Christmas Greetings album as well, either in a twofer with Christmas Carols or as a standalone CD.  (Sure, Britain's Dutton-Vocalian label reissued that one a couple years back with its original UK artwork and title, A Song for Christmas, but it would be nice to see it made available domestically with the name and cover art we Stateside listeners are accustomed to.) Maybe next year?

But, yes, I'll be sure to drop Mr. Anderson a line to offer my thanks for this.




(Message edited by Motown Mike On 09/29/2009 16:23)
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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:09/29/2009 16:45)

I recall growing up that we had the original 1953 Mantovani Christmas Carols LP in our home.  We played it every Christmas.  We didn't get stereo until 1963 and unfortunately never got around to getting the 1958 stereo edition.  I think my uncle had it.  He converted his hi-fi to stereo upon the new technology's arrival in 1958.

It may have taken a long time, but this year I'll finally have a copy of the beloved 1958 Christmas classic in full stereo. 
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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:09/29/2009 22:04)

Wow Chip,

I'm a bit taken back by your response.  I was just expressing myself without insulting anyone.  I am very well aware that there are two versions of the Mantovani orchestra and that the original Mantovani orchestra only recorded 2 Christmas albums and I knew that well before your post ever existed.  There's original Mantovani (Mantovani & His Orchestra) who recorded until the late 1970s, and the newer orchestra that uses the late maestro's name (Mantovani Orchestra).  Both are good, but the styles are different. Original Mantovani is a very grand and skilled sound whereas the Mantovani Orchestra has a simpler, more budgeted sound.  Throughout the years, I've been able to compile every song from the 1958 Christmas Carols from various CD compilations as I am sure others have done as well.  I understand the excitement Mantovani fans may have as the first reissue of Christmas Carols (in its entirety) will soon be released, but I was just hoping maybe David Rose's Christmas albums would've been reissued or maybe Geoff Love's because CD recordings from these albums are very, very, very hard to find.

Secondly, I never gave the impression that the collection available from Yestermusic was entirely Mantovani and I don't see the need for you to degrade the Yestermusic Company as if they were out to fool people.  I'm not discouraging folks from buying the CCM release.  As I said in my first post, I plan on purchasing CCM release.  I just wanted let people know (if they didn't already) that there was another Mantovani Christmas CD collection--whether it be a recording of original Mantovani, the new orchestra, or a combination of the two. 

Thirdly, your comment, "now that you’ve been enlightened"...I don't see why you see the need to "enlighten" by way of belittling.  As I have said on another post on this site, I respect you and the work you do.  It's truly unfortunate that one cannot post here without being verbally attacked--especially when I didn't even insult or single out anyone!!



Graig
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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:09/30/2009 02:21)


Mike:

That is ideally what I had wanted; a double CD with both of Monty's Christmas albums on it. 

Even though Dutton-Vocalian did a great job with their reissue of Monty's second Christmas album, the problem is just what you said; they used the original (British) Decca artwork, not the original (American) London Records artwork. I think the reason that Gordon decided not to reissue the second LP had to do with the added costs from Universal Music, as well as the fact that it is still currently available as an import CD from Dutton-Vocalian Records.

Also, thanks for sending a thank-you to Gordon, I do appreciate it.


Frank:

That's similar to our family. We didn't get our first stereo until 1966; a Sylvania console. Up to that point, we had a Webcor Hi-Fi. Thanks for sharing.


Graig:

Consider these facts...

In the first paragraph of your previous post you acknowledged it yourself when you said, "Original Mantovani is a very grand and skilled sound whereas the Mantovani Orchestra has a simpler, more budgeted sound." In saying that, you clearly established that the "new" Mantovani Orchestra does not live up to the standards of the great maestro himself.

I find that peculiar, because then, in the second paragraph, you have the temerity to say, "I don't see the need for you to degrade the Yestermusic Company as if they were out to fool people." Uh, Graig, when a record company knowingly markets a product with the name of the artist, the likeness of the artist and/or the image of the artist -- and it's not completely or entirely by that artist, then guess what? -- That's exactly what they are trying to do. And all the arguments that you can possibly make to the contrary won't change that one inherent fact. So the discussion ends here. It is this kind of lax attitude that causes millions of people to be duped out of their preciously earned money each and every day, and I for one will not have it.

This whole subject is especially irritating to me because this is also the same exact phenomenon that is happening with the “new” Percy Faith Orchestra; marketing music that gives the distinct impression that it is by none other than the maestro himself; again, even going as far as to post an actual picture of him on the front cover. Frankly, that’s bull, and I’m fed up with it. In addition to all this, it is also happening with the Yule Log itself, and false claims by manufacturers that their video is of "the original" Yule Log fireplace, which, of course, it can't be because WPIX/Tribune has never released the Original WPIX Yule Log on home video. If you can’t see what’s wrong with all of this, I feel sorry for you… I really do.

It's really remarkable, because you say emphatically that you didn't want to insult anyone with your comments in your post of September 28, but yet the whole breadth and scope of that post was to minimalize the great news of this new Mantovani release -- even going so far as to counter it with a link to a CD that you yourself, sir, have acknowledged was not all genuine Mantovani material -- I mean you have really got to be kidding. I shall not continue to dignify any further the comments that you have made here already, but I will leave you with this: after all the hard work that I do on behalf of the Yule Log, Christmas music, the website and the message board, I tell you, sir, that I take great umbrage to the remarks you made in the last paragraph of your previous post.   

 

To All:

I really don’t think it is necessary for me to say this because no one has ever done this on my message board before, but here goes:  

After reading this post, if anybody is still unclear here, then let me state it now in absolutely no uncertain terms: if anyone posts a link to an LP or CD on this message board that they are fully aware in advance is not genuine material by the artist in question, then you are to clearly note that in your post, otherwise you will have to answer to me.

Of course, naturally, if anyone unwittingly and unknowingly does this, I will completely understand; however, I will then ask you to edit your post to add a disclaimer.  

Lastly, let me just say that anyone who knows me, especially my longtime members, know that I can be tough, but that I am always fair. I’m an outspoken man who doesn’t mince his words and who doesn't play games. Others on this board can judge for themselves after considering the import of what has been said here about the subject at hand if my actions can in any way can be characterized in the manner that Graig described in the last paragraph of his previous post -- a post, by the way, that as owner of the message board I could have edited or deleted entirely, but chose not to. On the contrary, I want it to be seen, as the words are a reflection of the person who wrote them. 

Thank you.

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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:10/01/2009 14:50)

Thanx,Chip,for telling Mr. Anderson about reissuing these timeless classics-I've been waiting,albeit impatiently,for the Digital Issue of these for a very long time-their time is long overdue,indeed! I'll be ordering these,guaranteed! Once again,my deepest THANK YOU,Chip! Michael Boyce
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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:10/01/2009 20:41)

Just got the October 2009 CCM catalog and the only Christmas CD's it contains are closeouts, a few of which look appealing.  The announcement of the Mantovani reissue was too late for this catalog.  I'm quite sure the November catalog will contain the long-awaited Mantovani reissue and all the other Christmas albums CCM will offer this year.

Some of the more appealing holiday titles on CCMs close-out list are "The Coolest Yule...Ever", a compilation with songs by Nat King Cole, Louis Armstrong, Bing Crosby, Perry Como and Peggy Lee; "Christmas With The Stars", a 3-CD compilation and the 1965 Motown classic "Merry Christmas" by Diana Ross & The Supremes.  They did a bouncy, uptempo rendition of "Santa Claus Is Coming To Town" which I'm pretty sure is on this album.  I have it on another compilation.    
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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:10/02/2009 03:09)


Michael:

You bet, buddy.


Frank:

Yes, Santa Claus Is Coming To Town was indeed on the Supremes original 1965 Christmas LP, Merry Christmas


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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:10/02/2009 12:21)

Just netted another copy of Monty's "Christmas Carols" in the Stereo mode on Lp..I got it for 25 Cents at my local Library here in Pasco County..Great looking Lp,too,worth every penny I'd paid and then some! But,I'm still looking forward to that CD,nevertheless! Michael Boyce (P.S. It's the ORIGINAL FFSS Issue of 1958!)


10/02/09 @ 16:02:23 PM
Follow-up to above message:


I hope Gordon's considering reissuing Monty's "Christmas Greetings",too..I guess we'll have to wait a little longer for that...I hope not! These Lp's probably  getting a pretty penny on the Collector's markets! (ESPECIALLY The Original Monos!) Michael Boyce



 *Message edited by the Yule Log.com Message Board Administrator on 10/02/09 to combine two consecutive reply posts by the same member. Also, double-post was deleted.

**Click here to review my post regarding same-day double-posting.



(Message edited by Christmas Music Guru On 10/02/2009 18:14)
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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:10/02/2009 21:06)


Michael,

Glad you picked up the original vinyl LP, at least you'll have it for posterity.

By the way, this is something that I don't think that I've ever mentioned on the message board before, but this gives me the perfect opportunity to do so now.

As everyone already knows by now as a result of my posts on the message board, in 1958 Mantovani re-recorded his 1953 Christmas Carols LP in Stereo. And as everyone also knows as a result of my posts, the main difference between the 1953 and 1958 LPs is the change of sequence for the songs Adeste Fideles and The First Noel. (Adeste Fideles was switched from song #7 to song #1, and The First Noel was switched from song #1 to song #7.)   

But what most people don't know is that, unfortunately, London Records forever created confusion between these two LPs because in 1958 when they released the new Stereo disc, they never changed the song sequence on the album jacket artwork -- front or back! However, they did change the label on the record itself. Mantovani music aficionados are well aware of this anomaly, but most folks aren't. By the way, that anomaly continued up to the very time the LP went out of print in the 1970s. I have never understood why London Records never updated the album jacket; but then again, I'm not even sure they realized it!

This anomaly also created confusion for Gordon Anderson at Collectors' Choice Music: after I told him that he will know for sure if he got the correct Stereo master from Universal Music if the 1st song is Adeste Fideles and the 7th song is The First Noel, he came back to me and said that the copy of the Stereo LP they had in their possession showed the same song sequence as the original Mono LP. I had to tell him to physically pull the LP out of the jacket and look at the record label itself; after he did, he exclaimed, "you are correct, sir!"

By the way, it was very important to me for the Stereo song sequence to remain the same on the new CD, with Adeste Fideles as the opening song. The song's opening passage sets the whole tone for not only the rest of the song, but the entire album to follow. This opening passage for Adeste Fideles (which closes the song as well) is an extremely poignant and wistful arrangement of Monty's trademark "tumbling violins," and it is absolutely beautiful. This brilliant passage and the equally brilliant and heart-wrenching arrangement of the song itself just seem to encapsulate all the emotions of the entire season. I never fail to become emotionally moved by it when I hear it; in fact, as soon as I hear those first opening notes, I get a little choked up.

To be able to evoke such emotion to this degree with their music is what sets Mantovani and Percy Faith apart from anybody else and puts them in a class all by themselves.


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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:10/05/2009 08:56)

For me,it was his own-penned "Christmas Bells" that brought the emotions to the surface! The beautiful string arraingement brought a choke to me,everytime! Michael Boyce
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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:10/05/2009 18:45)


Michael,

I agree with you wholeheartedly -- we are in total sync. I'm glad to know that there are others out there who appreciate and are moved by Monty's music in the same way that I am.

In my previous post, since I was only talking about his first Christmas album, I didn't mention the song Christmas Bells, which was the shining star on his second Christmas album. But now that you have (and I'm very happy that you did), let me just say that this great original composition, which the maestro wrote himself, is probably the single best Christmas song he ever did -- making it, of course, one of the best Christmas songs of all-time. We are so fortunate that, thanks to the impeccable taste of former WPIX general manager Fred Thrower, it was included on the
Yule Log soundtrack (song #62).  

This one single song is the supreme and ultimate example of Mantovani's patented wistful and poignant "Cascading strings" arrangement technique, which creates that sweeping "fountains of thrilling sound" that he was so famous for.

This masterpiece of a song which he so brilliantly composed, Christmas Bells, along with his magnificent rendition of Adeste Fideles, just seems to encapsulate all the feelings and emotions of the entire Christmas season. It's truly remarkable.

I already posted this on my In The Spotlight thread for Mantovani, but since it was so relevant, I thought I'd post it here as well. This is an excerpt from the liner notes that were printed on the back of Monty's Christmas Carols LP
:


Commanded by his baton, his orchestra moves through beautiful, exciting melodies; violins soar and cascade, creating fountains of thrilling sound; familiar themes become transformed into glittering, jeweled patterns. Yet however rich the setting he devises, however sensuous or colorful the harmonies, Mantovani's music is always filled with warmth and emotion. No wonder millions of people all over the world respond to its artistry and brilliance.

"If there were stars in the eyes of 10,000 persons last night," wrote a Canadian critic, "Blame it on Mantovani, who appears to have a touch of magic at the end of his slender baton." No conductor has become so linked with the music his orchestra creates. The soaring, tumbling violins are the most individual feature of Mantovani's scoring.





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xmaslover1960
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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:10/06/2009 13:15)

And don't forget his Arranger and Friend Ronald Binge,who worked with him side by side,He, along with Monty himself,created that wonderful "Cascading Strings" sound-he was indispensible in helping him form that wonderful sound in 1951 for an Lp called "American Waltzes" for London Records-an unsung part of Mantovani's long and great career that lasted over 50 Years! Not bad for a conductor who was born a prodigy under a musical family! Michael Boyce

(Message edited by xmaslover1960 On 10/06/2009 13:17)
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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:10/06/2009 21:34)


Michael,

Thanks for your post and a sincere attempt to state some facts about Mantovani, but most of it is factually incorrect. I'll post below the correct info and timeline.

First: 1951 was the year that Monty and Ronnie's newly created "Cascading Strings" arrangement technique premiered on the single Charmaine. There was no LP released in this year.

Second: 1952 was the actual year that the full-length LP which premiered that new sound was released. And that album was not American Waltzes, but rather A Collection Of Favorite Waltzes (London catalog #LL-570later retitled Greensleeves). Unfortunately, the liner notes printed on the back of the Christmas Carols LP give the distinct impression that the album, A Collection Of Favorite Waltzes, was released in 1951, but it wasn't. In addition, the liner notes incorrectly suggest that Charmaine was released on this album, and that clearly was not the case. The single Charmaine was not released on a full-length LP until 1955 -- and that LP was Waltz Time (London catalog #LL-1094; later retitled Charmaine). By the way, the publishing date on this LP shows 1954, but it was actually released in 1955.  

Third: The American Waltzes LP that you stated was released in 1951 was not released until 1962 (London catalog #LL-3260 for Mono & PS-248 for Stereo).

Don't worry buddy, despite the errors, I sincerely appreciate your love and enthusiasm for Monty's music.



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Lawrence F. "Chip" Arcuri
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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:10/09/2009 12:48)


I received a very nice email today from Kenneth Mantovani, son of the great maestro. I'll be posting it as a stand-alone thread; however, since this is the official thread announcing the new CD release, I thought I would post it here as well:


-----Original Message-----
From: "Ken Mantovani"
Date: 10/09/2009 05:40 AM
To: "Lawrence F. ''Chip'' Arcuri"
Subject: 1958 "Christmas Carols" LP

Dear Chip
 
Many thanks indeed for your enthusiasm and loyalty regarding my father's music.  My sister, Paula, and I are delighted that you have finally succeeded in having the "Christmas Carols" transferred to CD to be released in November - a great achievement.
 
Since my father's death in 1980, due to popular demand, we have promoted Mantovani concerts around the world, including UK, America, Japan, Korea and China.  Although we can never replicate my father's presence, it has helped to keep the sound alive and they have been well received.
 
Once again, thank you so much for your continued support and we hope the launch in November will be hugely successful.
 
With best wishes
Kenneth


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DavesWorld56
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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:10/09/2009 17:17)

Thanks for the great news Chip.  I've never had a copy of this LP myself, but I have had a copy of his "Christmas Magic" LP for about 25 years now.  I can't wait for the CD of this recording to come out.

Correction.  I did find a copy of the Christmas Carols LP for $1.00 two Christmas Seasons ago at an online store.  I'm still buying the CD though.

(Message edited by DavesWorld56 On 10/09/2009 17:33)
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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:10/10/2009 01:15)


Dave,

If you have had the LP you referred to for 25 years, then unfortunately, I have to tell you that for the past 25 years you have been cheated.

The Christmas Magic LP, which was originally released in 1980 by Holiday Records, is not authentic and genuine Mantovani Christmas music. It is by "The Mantovani Orchestra" with a totally different conductor and orchestra. Of the ten songs on the album, 5 are re-recorded versions of songs Monty previously did on his two authentic Christmas albums, and 5 are new Christmas songs that he had never recorded during his career.

Regrettably my friend, you are not alone. There are countless others out there who for years have been totally unaware that they do not have the real McCoy, and it's a damn shame. I'm confident, though, that this long-overdue new release will do something to begin to change that.


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xmaslover1960
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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:10/10/2009 08:55)

I love it when a child of a Legend writes a "Thank-You" to people like us..It's really Moving  and Inspiring to see him and the rest of the Mantovani Family is keeping the Maestro's name alive and well! BRAVO to Kenneth and You,Chip,for doing the same! All the best,with Peace & Love,Michael Boyce
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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:10/10/2009 13:26)

LOL on me Chip.  I'll say this.  Authentic or not it sure is a good sounding LP.  However the only authentic Mantovani I've ever heard was this latest aquistion of his Christmas Carols LP, and the many Retail Comoilations that i grew up listening to over many Holiday Seasons.  Thanks for the info.  Any news on a release date for the CD?
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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:10/10/2009 21:00)


Dave,

The new release is still scheduled for late November. Gordon will let me know next week when it will be posted to their website for preorder. As soon as he gives me the date, I'll post it on this thread.


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DavesWorld56
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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:10/10/2009 23:01)

Awesome.  Thanks for that info.  I'll be sure to bookmark their website too.

Chip - what is this CD that I found at Amazon?

http://www.amazon.com/Christmas-Carols-Mantovani-His-Orchestra/dp/B00065VSKU 

EDIT: Nevermind I did a search here in the forum and found an earlier discussion about it!

Is it a good CD?  I see there are also copies of the "Christmas Carols" LP for sale on Amazon for 75 cents.

(Message edited by DavesWorld56 On 10/10/2009 23:28)
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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:10/12/2009 12:31)


Dave,

I just noticed that you edited your last post and added a question. 

No, I don't recommend that CD of the original 1953 Mono Christmas Carols recording as it is inferior to the later 1958 Stereo recording both artistically and especially, technologically. In addition, the 1953 version had the original song sequence, before that stroke-of-genius change that moved Adeste Fideles to song #1 and The First Noel to song #7.
 
By the way, Gordon advised me today that the new 1958 Christmas Carols CD release will be posted on their website for preorders by early November.


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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:10/12/2009 16:43)

Oh really?  That's concerns me then as to what it is that I pre-ordered there this past Sunday?  It said that it was the re-issue CD for $11.99 Pre-Order.  I hope I didn't pre-order the wrong thing.

This is what I pre-ordered:

1 CCM20852 MANTOVANI: CHRISTMAS CAROLS $ 11.98 Pre-order

Merchandise Total: $ 11.98
Tax: $ .00
Shipping & Processing: $ 6.95

Total for this Order: $ 18.93


(Message edited by DavesWorld56 On 10/12/2009 16:45)
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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:10/12/2009 19:27)


Thanks for bringing this to my attention, Dave.

I went to the CCM website and sure enough I did indeed find that listing you referred to; catalog #WWCCM20852. It looked very peculiar because there was no image displayed for the CD and no track listing available as well -- in fact, there is nothing listed but the title, price, catalog number and UPC number.

I then called Gordon to check on this and spoke to Jenn, his secretary. She checked with Gordon and he said that yes, even though that is the official listing for the new CD, they are not promoting it yet because it won't be completed with the artwork image and track listing until early November. I told Jenn that I had absolutely no problem with that; my only problem is that Gordon did not make that clear in his email to me earlier today.

Oy vey...

Anyway, since the CD is not scheduled to be released until late November, my advice to everyone is NOT to pre-order the CD until the artwork image and track listing are displayed on the listing, which, again, should be by early November. As soon as the listing has been updated with that pertinent info, I'll post it on this thread.

By the way, complicating things ever further is that CCM also carries the Dutch import CD of the original 1953 Mono recording of Christmas Carols. I've already received several emails from folks who thought that this was the listing for the new CD release of the 1958 Stereo recording. I spoke to Gordon about this last week and told him that it was in their interest to remove that listing from their website as it will certainly cause even more confusion in the weeks and months ahead as the holiday approaches. Whether or not they will heed my advice on this remains to be seen; but if they don't, they are going to have their hands full with folks wanting to return the CD in exchange for the correct one.

**So, for everyone out there, let me now make if unequivocally clear which CD to buy:

>This is the CORRECT CD to buy: Click here.

>This is the CD NOT to buy: Click here.

 
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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:10/12/2009 20:49)

Thanks Chip.  As long as I ordered the correct CD I'm ok with whatever date it comes out.  Thanks for checking on that for us.  I agree that it was confusing to me as well, and I DID come close to ordering the wrong CD.  I tried their "Search" Box, but both CD listings came up.  I just figured the one without an image yet was newer so that is the one I ordered.
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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:10/12/2009 22:07)


Dave,

Since you have already placed your order for the CD, I would just let it stand for now. If anything changes later, you can always cancel and re-order.

However, for everyone else, I would strongly recommend that you wait to pre-order the new CD until after the Collectors' Choice listing is complete -- just to make absolutely sure that what you are ordering is the correct thing. Right now, except for the artist name and title, there is nothing in this initial listing that's up on their website to indicate that it is the 1958 Stereo recording. And given all the confusion there has been thus far between the 1953 and 1958 recordings, I think it is better right now to err on the side of caution. As I said in my previous post, as soon as the listing is completed, I'll post it on this thread. 


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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:10/25/2009 03:10)


Update: Tentative release date for the Mantovani Christmas Carols CD is November 24, 2009.

I'll advise as soon as the listing for the CD is completed on the Collectors' Choice website so you can begin to place your pre-orders.


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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:10/26/2009 17:57)


The Collectors' Choice listing now includes the artwork!
Click here.

It is also now listed on Amazon as well!
Click here.

You can go ahead and start to place your pre-orders!!



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Jack_O
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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:10/26/2009 19:53)

Thanks for the links Chip... side two of my vinyl copy has a few bad skips.
Looking forward to this upgrade.
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DavesWorld56
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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:10/26/2009 21:43)

Hmmm.  That sucks.  I had to pay almost $19.00 for my copy through CCM's website.  You can get one for $10.99 at Amazon.  That's what I get for jumping the gun I guess.
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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:10/27/2009 19:42)


Dave,

Since Amazon's list price for the CD is only $1 cheaper than Collectors' Choice price, I surmise that the comparison you are making is the total that includes the $6.95 shipping with CCM as opposed to the free 'Super Saving Shipping' you get with Amazon if your order is over $25.

If you can get you order total up to $25 with Amazon, it definitely behooves you to order the CD from them. However, even if you don't have minimum order of $25, it still behooves you to order the CD from Amazon because their standard shipping charge is $4 cheaper than CCM's ($2.98 vs. $6.95). And when you combine that $4 shipping savings with the $1 you're saving on the CD itself, you're total saved with Amazon is $5.

Since the CD will not be released until November 24th, there is plenty of time for you to cancel your existing order with CCM and re-order it from Amazon. However, it can't be done online; what you need to do is call the CCM customer service department (800-993-6344) and have a representative do it for you.


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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:10/27/2009 19:53)

I'll try that.  Thanks.  Getting my order up to $25.00 is no problem.
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log_fan
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RE:Mantovani's 1958 'Christmas Carols' LP to be released on CD!
(Date Posted:10/29/2009 09:27)

I've placed my order with Amazon!  With what I saved on shipping costs, I also bought the Hollyridge Strings CD.  I might be back for a few more before this season's over!  Delivery is expected between Dec 1st and 3rd.  A couple of days late for my Thanksgiving weekend tree trim, but that's OK!

Two Christmas classics are coming home this year!
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