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2023 (Xmas) Albums Thing 241 - Various Artists “Phil Spector’s Christmas Album”

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As you may have noted following the last two blog posts and are surely about to realise with this one, my Christmas album collection, outside of one record, has a theme…coloured vinyl. This one is on Blue vinyl, a not very exciting shade of dull navy blue granted, but if you aren’t familiar with my penchant for coloured vinyl by now then you can’t have been paying very close attention for the past year.

It also helps that it’s a bloody great record regardless of the Christmas theme. It was originally released in 1963 under the title “A Christmas Gift For You From Philles Records”, Philles being the record company formed by Phil Spector and Les Sill in 1961, but these days is most commonly known as “Phil Spector’s Christmas Album”. It consists of the Philles artists of the time (Darlene Love, The Ronettes, Bob B Soxx & The Blue Jeans and The Crystals) belting out a selection of Christmas standards all supported by Spector’s patented “wall of sound” production.

You get “White Christmas”, “Santa Claus Is Coming To Town”, “Frosty The Snowman”, “I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus”, “Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer”, “Winter Wonderland” etc. etc. and it all ends on an excruciatingly cheesy (American) “Silent Night”. Cher sings (uncredited) backing vocals throughout and the Beach Boys Brian Wilson played piano on “Santa Claus Is Coming To Town”…but his performance was so bad it wasn’t included.

Special mention has to be made of the one song written for this record, Darlene Love’s “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)”. It’s an absolute banger and unbelievably, on first release as a single in 1963 and again in 1964, it didn’t chart, not doing so for the first time until 2018 ! That tells you everything you need to know about the great record buying public, deaf as gate posts the lot of em !! Thankfully it’s now regarded as a Christmas standard.

Yes, Spector indelibly marked his copy book eventually but Christmas just wouldn’t seem like Christmas without this.

Christmas (Baby Please Come Home) - https://youtu.be/4EvZOXEoJ84?si=2mLhJ1mCzUjD9rYa

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