Nov 10

Former SLO resident leads pack of new holiday albums

Click here to view the embedded video.

I still can't believe we're just a couple of weeks before Thanksgiving. In fact, I refuse to accept it — and that has nothing to do with the fact that I have yet another birthday coming up on Thanksgiving Day, making me obsess more about mortality and aging.


What was I talking about?

Oh yeah — Christmas albums.

Even though it's not evern Thanksgiving, this is the time to start thinking about new Christmas albums, and one of the most critically praised holiday albums this year comes from a former SLO resident. She & Him — including former Cal Poly student M. Ward and actress Zooey Deschanel — recently released "A Very She & Him Christmas," a pretty straightforward but still good album that spotlights these cute hipsters. Songs include "Have Yourself a Mery Little Christmas," "Blue Christmas" and "The Christmas Song."

Other new Christmas albums include Brushfire Records' entry "This Warm November: A Brushfire Holiday, Vol. 2?, featuring artists like Jack Johnson, Rogue Wave and G. Love. Given that so many Chrismas albums recycle the same old tunes, it's nice to see that 10 of this album's 13 songs are originals. (Hear Johnson's feel-good "In the Morning," from that album here.)

Scott Weiland's "The Most Wonderful Time of the Year" is interesting simply because I wouldn't have guessed Weiland would ever do a Christmas album. But he actually can pull it off, performing standards as a crooner, complete with an orchestra and cozy floor bass. (Here samples on First Spin.) Other artists releasing Christmas records include Michael Buble, Carole King, Chicago, Justin Bieber and John Tesh.

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