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 anthonyv's Recent Posts
Rank: Gold  
Score: 193
Posts: 193
Joined: 10/30/2005

Posted on 10/14/2017 11:21


Thank you for your kind words.

You're right...I should have remembered those discussions about that '57 album and other Sinatra albums more clearly. Now that you've mentioned them, I have a better recollection of our exchanges. Thanks for clearing up the cobwebs that seem to cloud my memory these days. I can assure you it was not necessarily laziness on my part, just a residual effect of getting older....LOL 

You might like to know that my 14 year old son is a huge fan of Christmas music - not the new stuff, mostly the older classic Yule Log and WPAT stuff we grew up with. Not only does he check this message board every morning before he goes to school, but when I ask him if there's any classic Christmas albums he might be interested in, he automatically goes to your lists to see where you have a particular album ranked.


Thanks to you as well for your kind words. I guess we all have our favorite records that come to represent the special times and special people in our lives. As long as music touches our soul, that's really all that matters in my opinion. And, without a doubt, no music can touch the soul better than Christmas music.

I know the John Klein album you're talking about - at least I should since the cover scared the hell out of me as a kid. Is it a red RCA Victor LP with Santa sitting in a rocking chair behind a stream of open curtains? My grandmother worked for RCA and she used to bring home complimentary albums all the time. If it's the same album (not sure if it was ever re-issued with a different cover) she had it. Santa's face terrified me so much that my mother had to lock it away in a storage trunk in our attic. In fact I had to watch and make sure the trunk was secured with a padlock. When this topic was posted on the message board once before, I think Chip provided a photo of the cover and it still gave me chills.

Posted on 10/13/2017 22:07

First let me say that it's always great to read your comments, opinions, and observations Chip. I don't remember you ever mentioning A JOLLY CHRISTMAS before, but I'm sure you did at some point over the years. Regardless, I pretty much agree with you - especially about the bad timing. Perhaps Capitol should have rescheduled the Christmas sessions and planned for a later 1958 release. I always knew the album sounded "different" and had a "sad" feel to it, but I never gave it much thought or consideration when I was younger.

It's still one of my favorite Christmas albums - but more for sentimental reasons. Like many Italian-Americans his age, my father loved Frank Sinatra ("The Patron Saint of Hoboken") and he loved this album. Growing up, it was always the first Christmas album my sisters and I would hear every Thanksgiving.  With my father passing away in July, I expect this album will have even more personal meaning for me.

I know it's nowhere near a first tier Christmas album, but for me it will always be the most special.  

Posted on 10/13/2017 14:45

Actually, Frank Sinatra was in "a funk" while recording this album. 

Nancy Sinatra has often said that she believes the reason for the albums somber feel was because her father's divorce with Ava Gardner happened to coincide with the album's May-July 1957 recording sessions. During the making of the album (as well as the recording sessions for the WHERE ARE YOU album before it) both Nancy and Tina Sinatra remembered their father "being in a very dark place, emotionally." They also recalled Capitol offering to reschedule the Christmas sessions and pushing its release to the fall of 1958 if necessary.  

Despite the melodrama that surrounded the making of this album, time has been kind to A JOLLY CHRISTMAS. Sixty years later, all of the tracks from the album are still played and heard on the radio throughout the entire holiday season.                                                                                               

Thanks so much Chip for all your help in getting Percy Faith's MUSIC OF CHRISTMAS released this holiday season. Even my 14 year old son is excited about finally hearing this true musical masterpiece the way it deserves to be heard! I plan on pre-ordering a few copies this weekend.



Posted on 11/13/2016 00:45

I tried but I couldn't find it on YouTube. Thanks!

Yeah, it must have been a pretty obscure Christmas show....Everyone I've ever mentioned it to doesn't recall ever seeing it either. The last year I definitely remember watching it on TV was on a Saturday afternoon in late November 1975. My sister reminded me that we originally saw it at an extended Saturday afternoon "holiday" children's matinee around 1973. It was shown between SANTA CLAUS CONQUERS THE MARTIANS and THE CHRISTMAS THAT ALMOST WASN'T.

Posted on 11/11/2016 20:42

I remember my father listening to Mr. Caiola's collection of Italian music that was sold on TV. For some reason I also remember listening to a Christmas album that Mr. Caiola recorded. But that was so long time ago, I could be wrong.

With the exception of maybe the late, great Tommy Tedesco (member of the legendary "Wrecking Crew" and featured guitarist on so many of Tommy Garrett's popular 50 GUITARS albums) I'm not sure any guitarist played on more well known, popular, hit recordings than Al Caiola.

RIP Mr. Caiola.

Posted on 11/07/2016 22:21

Does anyone recall a cartoon from the 1970s called CHRISTMAS IS...? It was about a young boy named Benjy who was picked to be in a Christmas play at school or in church but didn't want to. One day (or night) he had a dream that he went back in time with his dog to witness the nativity. When he woke up he had a different opinion and better appreciation about being in the play. I remember they used to show this cartoon right before the Santa Claus parade from Hollywood on one of the local stations here in the NY metro area - either WNEW, WPIX, or WOR.

Posted on 11/04/2016 11:17

Thanks Chip.
I was going to ask you another question but I saw that you had answered it already (the reason for my edit).

Posted on 11/03/2016 21:52


Knowing your expansive, vast collection of holiday music, I often wondered about a few things that I'd like to ask you, if that's okay?

1. What record or album DON"T you have in your collection (if there are any) that you are still searching for?

2. What was/were the most difficult records or albums to find over the years?

3. In your opinion, as a collector, what are some of the rarest holiday records or albums?

4. What were some of the earliest records or albums you can recall buying and where did you usually buy holiday music? Here in NJ I always thought places like Korvettes, S. Klein, Grants, Two Guys, Great Eastern, Valley Fair, Bradlees, and especially Woolworths (Menlo Park Mall specifically) had the best selections, even if a lot of them were discounted cut-out stock or re-issues.

 Thanks Chip!


Posted on 11/02/2016 13:08

If the Yule Log wasn't great enough as it is, what a great way to make a very special day even more special....I think a lot of us hoped for a 5th hour of music to be added for a while. After seven years we finally got our wish. What a great Christmas gift. Thanks Chip and PIX 11.
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