Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass
1968 Original Release, A&M Records
2015 this 24-bit 88.1 khz Reissue
This week, I’ve been enjoying the unexpected and excellent Christmas album by Los Lobos. But since that album is brand new, you will just have to get your own copy or stream it somewhere. Instead, I bring you this pleasant bit of fun by Herb Alpert that, while not exactly crackling with creativity, is still a break from whatever overplayed piped-in Christmas music shoppers have been subjected to this year. There is a truly groovy, slowed-down rendition of “Let It Snow”, followed by a “Jingle Bell Rock” that ends with a bit of striptease burlesque.
Shorty Rogers did lovely vocal arrangements on a few tunes, and marimba and vibes are provided by Julius Wechter (Martin Denny, Baja Marimba Band). In the long tradition of Jews who celebrate Christmas (going all the way back to that first guy), Alpert and his business partner Jerry Moss have done quite a bit over the years to propagate halfway interesting holiday music. They had a hand in the ‘Very Special Christmas’ series of albums, the ones with the variation of the Keith Haring painting on every cover, which raised money for the Special Olympics. One of those albums even featured a tune by Caetano Veloso and Gilberto Gil. Some of Alpert’s 1968’s “Christmas Album” was probably piped into airplanes and hospitals back when people smoked cigarettes freely in those places and “ugly sweaters” were not ironic. Enjoy it with some eggnog or spiced cider (but please, no smoking).
|My Favorite Things||3:00|
|The Christmas Song||4:25|
|The Bell That Couldn’t Jingle||2:53|
|Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow||3:40|
|Jingle Bell Rock||1:50|
|Jesu, Joy Of Man’s Desiring||3:24|