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Christmas Music Guru
http://forum1.aimoo.com/theyulelog
Rank: Honorary Member  
Status: Lawrence F. Arcuri Owner/Webmaster of TheYuleLog.com
Score: 3346
Posts: 3346
From: USA
Joined: 09/07/2005


Posted on 04/30/2017 23:14


Yes Steve, I do indeed think highly of the album -- as evidenced not only by its #22 position in my
Top 500, but also by the inclusion of two of its songs in my new 5th hour that I created and produced for the Yule Log telecast last year.

UMG did a fairly good job with their reissue of the album, but not only was I not happy that they didn't use the original LP cover artwork, but also that they intermixed the bonus tracks within the songs of the regular album.

And yes, I'd like to get a proper reissue of this album out someday; but it would be another tall order with UMG.





Posted on 04/18/2017 23:09


That cover you alluded to was not for the original album under the Christmas Wonderland title, but rather for one of many reissues of the album that was released by Polydor Records over the years.

Among these reissue titles were Christmastide, Christmas With Bert Kaempfert and A Drop Of Christmas Spirit.

There were four different covers for the Christmastide reissue:
a church scene (catalog #46-408), a lighted house (catalog 46-408 &
237-608), an ornament (catalog #825-143-1 & 2372-044), and finally
the mandolin cover (catalog #SPH-37608).

The cover for the reissue entitled Christmas With Bert Kaempfert was the church scene (catalog #104-693); and the cover for the reissue entitled A Drop Of Christmas Spirit was a woman with a drink (catalog #2418-208).

By the way, the cover for original Christmas Wonderland LP in Europe and other countries around the world was with the church scene (catalog #2372-044).


 Follow-up to above message:

Sorry, but there was a Polydor Records reissue that I forgot to mention above: it was a French reissue on the International Polydor Production label entitled Joy
eux Noel (catalog #2512-GU). The cover for this French reissue sported a house covered with snow.






*[Edited 04/19/17 to add info on French reissue]




Posted on 04/09/2017 22:04


Yes
Steve, since the Jim Reeves LP is a Sony property, it will be remastered
here in New York at Battery Mastering Studios. The quality of the
remastering (what little there was of it) of the 1988 BMG CD release was
atrocious. That will now happily be corrected.

As
for the Bert Kaempfert LP, the mono cover artwork for the original 1963
Decca Records release (catalog #DL-4441) was the same as the stereo
release (catalog #DL-74441), only without the stereo logo. The only
other domestic cover came in the late 1960s and it sported a drawing of a snow globe.
Aside from these two domestic covers, there was a Polydor Records cover
that was used for releases of the album in Germany and other countries
around the world like Mexico.






Posted on 04/09/2017 12:26


Steve,

I'm hoping that I'll be able to get the Jim Reeves out this year.

By the way, it was originally released on CD twenty-nine years ago in 1988 by BMG (Bertelsmann Music Group), which was before Sony's acquisition of the company.

As for the 1996 Taragon Records Bert Kaempfert CD, it was indeed released with the original cover artwork (click here).




Posted on 04/08/2017 19:30


Steve:

Rest assured I'm working to release all those titles you mentioned. Also working on a proper digital re-release of the Jim Reeves and Kitty Wells.

By the way, the Bert Kaempfert was in print for a while on CD: it was released by Taragon Records in 1996 by special arrangement with PolyGram. However, it's now out-of-print and going for big bucks. I'd like to get this back in print as well.



Jim:

It'll be here before you know it.





Posted on 04/07/2017 13:21


Thanks, Bob. I just hope this summer's not as torturous as last summer, which was the hottest on record. But I have a feeling we're in for a scorcher. Heat Miser will definitely rule the day.






Posted on 04/06/2017 18:45


 


  



It is with such great pride and joy that after many years of trying, I have finally gotten back into print (and released on CD for the very first time) the two classic and legendary Decca Records Christmas albums by the great Fred Waring and The Pennsylvanians: 'Twas The Night Before Christmas and Christmas Time. And they both will be released with their original Decca album jacket artwork – and for 'Twas The Night Before Christmas, that means that famous cover with the great American artist Norman Rockwell's sweet and poignant "Caught Napping" drawing (a rendering of Santa and his elves discovering two small children asleep in a chair on Christmas Eve night). It is actually this album jacket cover that I consider to be the greatest Christmas album jacket cover of all-time.


These two great iconic Christmas albums not only reside in the 1st Tier of my Top 500, but in my Ultra Top 10, where they occupy the #5 and #6 positions respectively.


This Fred Waring 2fer CD release, along with my two Percy Faith releases (in 2012 and the previously announced big one for this year in 2017), as well as my Mantovani release (in 2009) are the ones that I have worked the longest and hardest for and are the ones that I am the most proud.


It was a long hard road to finally get UMG (Universal Music Group) to cede over the release/distribution copyrights to these two great Christmas albums (and we actually came close a couple of times), but it was well worth the wait and perseverance in the end. The last stumbling block came earlier this year when, after UMG agreed in principal to the deal, they couldn't find Mr. Warings's contract! I thought I had seen everything up to then, but that was a new low – even for UMG. I have stated publically many times on the board what a difficult company they are to deal with. And they drive a hard bargain – money, control over production, etc.


By the way, for younger folks not familiar with the Christmas music of The Pennsylvanians, they will certainly recognize the group's classic version of “Jingle Bells,” as that is the song that's playing in the background in the scene from the movie A Christmas Story when Ralphie and Randy visit with Santa at Higbee's Department Store!


The street date for the new CD is not yet set as of the writing of this post; but as soon as it's available, I will post it on this thread. So stay tuned.


As for Fred Waring, what can I possibly say that I haven't said already in my many writings on the message board over the years? Therefore, I am going to let the music speak for me by virtue of four music videos from my YouTube channel; as well as links to three previous writings that I have posted over the years on the message board.


For my previous writings on the board, the first link is to an In The Spotlight tribute that I did to Fred Waring and The Pennsylvanians in August of 2010 (click here); the second link is to a post, also from August of 2010, that is dedicated to The Teen Trio, who are prominently featured in three of the four songs on Side 1 of the album 'Twas The Night Before Christmas (click here); and the third link is to a Christmas In July spotlight that I did for the Pennsylvanians back in July of 2008 (click here).


And for the music, I am posting below from my YouTube channel all four songs from Side 1 of the album 'Twas The Night Before Christmas. They are in the order of their appearance on the album: “Jingle Bells; Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer; Santa Claus Is Comin' To Town” and, of course, the title song, “Twas The Night Before Christmas.” Enjoy!!



<iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/XJBs_NSDoPM?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>


<iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/rBVqi_YvtHQ?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>


<iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/KmjIwuj4lLU?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>


<iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/Eq8hAW5nmIU?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>






Posted on 04/04/2017 11:19


Steve:

Sony approved all of my bonus tracks, but there were actually seven, not eight (although I wish there were!), as I mistakenly typed in my previous post. Sorry about that. I edited my post to correct the typo.



John:

A 24K gold-plated CD would be a wonderful thing to see and so fitting for this release
the #1 Christmas album in my Top 500; but unfortunately, Gordon doesn't do them at Real Gone Music. In addition, it would be considered an alternate release, requiring a separate contract negotiation with Sony. But all that notwithstanding, if Gordon did them, you can be sure that I would definitely push for it.






Posted on 04/03/2017 19:22




I got word from Hollywood earlier today that my proposed Percy Faith release with all seven bonus tracks has finally been cleared and the project formally approved by SME (Sony Music Entertainment). We're on our way...

The street date for the new CD is not yet set as of the writing of this post; but as soon as it's available, I will post it on this thread. So stay tuned.






*[Edited 04/04/17 to correct typo]


Posted on 03/19/2017 12:30


Yes it is, Rick, but working to get these new releases out can be very trying -- not as much with Sony or WMG, but with UMG. The latest example is my proposed Fred Waring release. It is being held up, and possibly might not even happen, because UMG can't find Mr. Waring's contract. I thought I had seen everything with UMG, but this one really takes the cake. It is yet another example of why I have such a low opinion of them as a company. All I can say is that they better find the damn thing. I knew they were disorganized, but this is a new low.




Posted on 03/17/2017 00:32


Everything so far is fine
with the Percy Faith release. However, it has not formally cleared yet. The
vaults for both Columbia and RCA are primarily here in New York.






Posted on 02/11/2017 12:30


It was just marketing on Capitol's part, Steve; the album wasn't tied to any kind of event, anniversary or purpose other than to celebrate the uniqueness of Christmas in America.




Posted on 02/10/2017 14:41


The original version of C
hristmas America (catalog #SLAO-6666) was released by Capitol Records in 1970. It was later repackaged for Firestone in 1973 (catalog #SL-6884). However, the subsequent Firestone release only had five songs from the original LP: "Christmas America, Part 1" (The Hollywood Pops), "Christmas America, Part 2" (The Hollywood Pops), "White Christmas" (Fred Waring and The Pennsylvanians), "The Christmas Waltz" (Peggy Lee) and "Over The River" (The Hollywood Pops).

In 1974, Capitol Records created Christmas America, Album Two (catalog #SL-6950) for Firestone to sell exclusively through their stores.




Posted on 02/06/2017 13:18


I did some checking, and yes, apparently Sony Music recently acquired Dino's Reprise Records catalog. This is not a problem, as working with SME (Sony Music Entertainment) to secure copyrights for distribution wouldn't be a problem; however, WMG (Warner Music Group) would have been a trifle easier to deal with.




Posted on 02/05/2017 01:17


Yes, that song as well as the two Christmas standards from Eydie's 1966 Spanish Christmas album with the Trio Los Panchos Navidad Means Christmas,
"Noche De Paz" (Silent Night) and "Blanca Navidad" (White Christmas), will be included on a Real Gone Music complete Christmas collection CD if we do one.




Posted on 02/03/2017 12:26


Thanks, Jon. And yes, I'm feeling a bit better now. There was a worry that the bronchitis would settle into pneumonia, but after a week on an inhaler and antibiotics, that danger, thankfully, now seems to have passed.

As for the new Real Gone Music Christmas CD releases that are coming out each year, Gordon pretty much now only releases what I personally recommend. This as a result of the sales success of my releases.

A complete Nat and Dino are meritorious ideas, but there are just too many other priorities ahead of them right now to consider. In addition to that, both artists would require engagement (meaning a fight) with UMG (Universal Music Group) to secure the copyrights for distribution, as they are a notoriously difficult company to deal with.

Unfortunately, all of Nat's holiday material (his Christmas album and singles) were on the Capitol Record label, which now belongs to UMG; as well as the first of Dino's two Christmas albums, which was another Capitol LP. Thankfully, though, Dino's second Christmas album was on his buddy Sinatra's Reprise Record label, and that now belongs to WMG (Warner Music Group), which would mean a relatively easy quest to secure the legal copyrights for distribution.

As for this year's CD releases, rest assured that, as always, I will make the exclusive announcement in a group email as well as here on my message board via my "Chip's Tips" column as soon as the deals are closed with the record companies.





Posted on 02/03/2017 03:28



Sorry for the delayed
response, I've been sick with the flu and bronchitis for the last
half-month.

Glad to hear you enjoyed
the Yule Log broadcast this year.

And no, there is no
complete Steve & Eydie collection anywhere. Besides "Go Tell It On The
Mountain," another bonus song that is missing from the reissue CD is Steve's
great solo of "'Twas The Night Before Christmas," which he recorded
exclusively in 1967 for Goodyear's The Great Songs Of Christmas, Vol.
7
. There's also Eydie's solo of "It Came Upon A Midnight Clear," which she
recorded exclusively in 1969 for RCA's Christmas In New York, Vol.
3
.

In 2012, when Steve and
Eydie first released their Christmas album through their private GL
Music label, I mentioned to Steve about adding the above songs as additional
bonus tracks to "Baby It's Cold Outside" and "Hurry Home For Christmas" which
they had included on their new reissue CD. He said he'd look into it, but
unfortunately nothing ever came of it.

As for Nat and Dino,
perhaps complete collections for both will be forthcoming from Real Gone Music
in the future.
We'll see.






Posted on 01/04/2017 04:40


No Peter, I can't. It's hard to explain the crazy things these record companies do now and then. Personally, I think they spoiled the cover artwork with their injudicious changes.






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