Home / News / A CAPITOL CHRISTMAS CELEBRATES 75 YEARS OF CAPITOL RECORDS WITH A COLLECTION OF CHERISHED HOLIDAY CLASSICS FROM LABEL’S LEGENDARY ARTISTS

A CAPITOL CHRISTMAS CELEBRATES 75 YEARS OF CAPITOL RECORDS WITH A COLLECTION OF CHERISHED HOLIDAY CLASSICS FROM LABEL’S LEGENDARY ARTISTS

In honour of Capitol Records’ 75th anniversary, A Capitol Christmas presents some of the most cherished holiday classics from Capitol’s vast catalogue and legendary artists. Available now via Universal Music Canada, music lovers can choose to experience these timeless songs digitally, on CD, and as a double LP housed in a gatefold package. Liner notes by compilation producer Jay Landers tell the story of each song in beautiful detail.

Order and stream A Capitol Christmas

Gathering some of the biggest songs and artists in the holiday canon, A Capitol Christmas is sure to get listeners in the mood for the holidays and serve as the perfect soundtrack to their yuletide festivities all season long. Fittingly, the album opens with Capitol’s first homegrown superstar, Nat King Cole, and his stereophonic version of The Christmas Song, arranged by Ralph Carmichael in 1961. It is bookended with a splendid rendition of Cole’s ubiquitous seasonal standard featuring the 1999 virtual duet with his daughter, Natalie Cole. Cole’s jazz combo the Nat King Cole Trio is included with the novelty tune All I Want For Christmas (Is My Two Front Teeth). It’s impossible to overstate the importance of Frank Sinatra to Capitol Records and he is showcased on the album with the exquisite The Christmas Waltz and Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas, considered the definitive version of the three he recorded. Both songs were originally released on his 1957 holiday album, A Jolly Christmas From Frank Sinatra. Fellow Rat Packer Dean Martin delivers his trademark croon on evergreens Winter Wonderland and I’ve Got My Love To Keep Me Warm. Having recorded a dozen holiday themed albums, Bing Crosby became synonymous with Christmas. His Christmas single for Capitol, Do You Hear What I Hear, a call and response arrangement with the Ralph Carmichael Singers, became a worldwide hit.

Singer, songwriter and actress Peggy Lee spent an illustrious 30 years on Capitol and the selections of hers span her tenure at the label. The gentle A Christmas Spell, arranged by her then-husband and frequent collaborator, guitarist Dave Barbour, was originally released as a single in 1949. Like A Sleighride, Lee’s jazzy adaptation of Jingle Bells, is from her sumptuous 1960 holiday album, Christmas Carousel. No holiday collection would be complete without the seductive duet, Baby, It’s Cold Outside, of which continues to be recorded by scores of artists year after year. The version here features Capitol Records co-founder Johnny Mercer, the world-class songwriter and recording artist, along with Margaret Whiting. Mercer’s swinging Santa Claus Is Coming To Town from 1947 shows off his croon alongside the vocal stylings of the Pied Pipers. Whiting also makes another duet appearance, this time alongside singing cowboy star Jimmy Wakely on the sterling Silver Bells.

In 1967, The First Lady Of Song, Ella Fitzgerald, recorded a collection of non-secular standards for Capitol, Ella Fitzgerald’s Christmas, arranged and conducted by Ralph Carmichael. Her soaring versions of The First Noel and Away In A Manger are both included. A Capitol Christmas features many other delightful holiday tunes including Nancy Wilson’s symphonic What Are You Doing New Year’s Eve?, Lou Rawls’ soulful Merry Christmas, Baby, Jackie Gleason’s orchestral instrumentals of Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow! and I’ll Be Home For Christmas, as well as Bob Atcher’s tropical-tinged Christmas Island, among several others.

The historic Capitol Records Tree was lit at sundown yesterday, for the 58th time, signifying the start of the holiday season in Hollywood. Designed by Ollsen Lighting and featuring more than 4,373 bulbs, the tree has been a part of the Hollywood skyline each December since 1958.

A CAPITOL CHRISTMAS CD/DIGITAL TRACK LISTING

  1. The Christmas Song (Merry Christmas To You) – Nat King Cole

  2. The Christmas Waltz – Frank Sinatra

  3. Winter Wonderland – Dean Martin

  4. I Like A Sleighride (Jingle Bells) – Peggy Lee

  5. Baby, It’s Cold Outside – Margaret Whiting & Johnny Mercer

  6. Christmas Island – The Dinning Sisters with Bob Atcher

  7. The First Noel – Ella Fitzgerald

  8. White Christmas – Jo Stafford

  9. What Are You Doing New Year’s Eve? – Nancy Wilson

  10. Merry Christmas, Baby – Lou Rawls

  11. Silver Bells – Margaret Whiting & Jimmy Wakely

  12. Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow! – Jackie Gleason

  13. Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas – Frank Sinatra

  14. I’ve Got My Love To Keep Me Warm – Dean Martin

  15. Santa Claus Is Coming To Town – Johnny Mercer

  16. The Christmas Spell – Peggy Lee

  17. (All I Want For Christmas Is) My Two Front Teeth – Nat King Cole and His Trio

  18. (Everybody’s Waitin’ For) The Man With The Bag – Kay Starr

  19. I’ll Be Home For Christmas – Jackie Gleason

  20. I’d Like You For Christmas – Julie London

  21. The Merriest – June Christy

  22. Away In A Manger – Ella Fitzgerald

  23. Do You Hear What I Hear? – Bing Crosby

  24. The Christmas Song (Merry Christmas To You) – Nat King Cole & Natalie Cole

A CAPITOL CHRISTMAS LP TRACK LISTING SIDE A

  1. The Christmas Song (Merry Christmas To You) – Nat King Cole

  2. The Christmas Waltz – Frank Sinatra

  3. Winter Wonderland – Dean Martin

  4. I Like A Sleighride (Jingle Bells) – Peggy Lee

  5. Baby, It’s Cold Outside – Margaret Whiting & Johnny Mercer

  6. Christmas Island – The Dinning Sisters with Bob Atcher

SIDE B

  1. The First Noel – Ella Fitzgerald

  2. White Christmas – Jo Stafford

  3. What Are You Doing New Year’s Eve? – Nancy Wilson

  4. Merry Christmas, Baby – Lou Rawls

  5. Silver Bells – Margaret Whiting & Jimmy Wakely

  6. Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow! – Jackie Gleason

SIDE C

  1. Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas – Frank Sinatra

  2. I’ve Got My Love To Keep Me Warm – Dean Martin

  3. Santa Claus Is Coming To Town – Johnny Mercer

  4. The Christmas Spell – Peggy Lee

  5. (All I Want For Christmas Is) My Two Front Teeth – Nat King Cole and His Trio

  6. (Everybody’s Waitin’ For) The Man With The Bag – Kay Starr

SIDE D

  1. I’ll Be Home For Christmas – Jackie Gleason

  2. I’d Like You For Christmas – Julie London

  3. The Merriest – June Christy

  4. Away In A Manger – Ella Fitzgerald

  5. Do You Hear What I Hear? – Bing Crosby

  6. The Christmas Song (Merry Christmas To You) – Nat King Cole & Natalie Cole

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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