The Beach Boys' Christmas Album
|The Beach Boys' Christmas Album|
|Studio album by The Beach Boys|
|Released||November 9, 1964|
|Recorded||October 20, 1963; June 18–30, 1964|
|Studio||Capitol Studios and United Western Recorders, Hollywood|
|The Beach Boys chronology|
This page is a soft redirect.}
|The Beach Boys UK chronology|
|Singles from The Beach Boys' Christmas Album|
The Beach Boys' Christmas Album is the seventh studio album by the Beach Boys, released in November 1964. Containing five original songs and seven standards, the album proved to be a long-running success during subsequent Christmas seasons, initially reaching number six in the US Billboard 200 chart in its year of release and eventually going gold.
While leader Brian Wilson produced and arranged the "rock" songs, he left it to Dick Reynolds (an arranger of the Four Freshmen, a group Wilson idolized) to arrange the forty-one piece orchestral backings on the traditional songs to which the Beach Boys would apply their vocals.
One single was released from the album, the original composition "The Man with All the Toys" backed with the group's rendition of "Blue Christmas". "Little Saint Nick", a single which had already been released the previous year, was included on the album.
The album was devised as a response to Phil Spector's A Christmas Gift for You from Philles Records (1964), an album Brian had attended recording sessions for. He played piano on the song "Santa Claus Is Coming to Town" but was dismissed by Spector due to his substandard piano playing. Original album cover photo by George Jerman for Capitol Photo Studio.
With the exception of "Little Saint Nick", sessions for the album spanned from June 18–30, 1964, one month after the All Summer Long album was completed. "Christmas Day" is the first Beach Boys song to feature a lead vocal from Al Jardine.[original research?]
In addition to orchestral renditions of "Jingle Bells" and the original Wilson composition "Christmas Eve" which never received vocal overdubs, outtakes of the All Summer Long track "Little Honda" and Today! single "Don't Hurt My Little Sister" were recorded in between June sessions.
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In a retrospective review, Allmusic's Jason Ankeny stated: "Brian Wilson's pop genius is well suited to classic Yuletide fare, and the group delivers lush performances of standards ranging from 'Frosty the Snowman' to 'White Christmas' as well as more contemporary material like 'The Man With All the Toys' and 'Blue Christmas.'"
While interviewing Wilson for a promotional radio special in 1964, Jack Wagner remarked that Wilson's decision to sing solo on a version of "Blue Christmas" could be "the start of a whole new career," to which Wilson responded "I don’t know. It could and it couldn't. I really don’t know." Referring to the standards which he believed "proved that the Beach Boys' vocal power was bigger and more agile than the surf and hot rod records [and] staking a claim for wider musical terrain," author Luis Sanchez reflected: "The Beach Boys' Christmas Album music shows a quality of aesthetic selectivity that none of the group's records that came before it do, aspiring not just to assimilate one of pop's stock ideas, but also enabling Brian to make one of his biggest artistic advances."
|This section possibly contains original research. (December 2014)|
|United States||1988||Capitol||CD||CDP 7 91008-2||First CD issue; the single mix of "Little Saint Nick" (in mono and with overdubbed sleigh bells) replaces the LP version as the first track. The first five tracks are presented in mono, while other seven tracks from the original sequence are in stereo.|
|Japan||1989||Toshiba EMI Japan||CD||TOCP-5945||All twelve original tracks are in stereo, plus the single mono version of "Little Saint Nick" and its B-side "The Lord's Prayer" (mono version) added as bonus tracks.|
|United States||1991||Capitol||CD||CDP 7 95084-2||All twelve original tracks in stereo and four bonus tracks added: the single version of "Little Saint Nick", its B-side "The Lord's Prayer" (this time in stereo), and alternate takes of "Little Saint Nick" (utilizing the melody from the group's song "Drive-In") and "Auld Lang Syne" (without Dennis' spoken message overdubbed). "The Man With All The Toys", "Santa's Beard", "Merry Christmas, Baby" and "Christmas Day" are in mono, while other eight tracks from the original sequence are in stereo.|
- Related compilations
- 1998: Ultimate Christmas
- A new CD compilation containing all of the twelve tracks from the original LP (in stereo, with "Little Saint Nick" presented in a new stereo mix that added the sleigh bells from the single version), all of the bonus tracks from the previous CD except for "The Lord's Prayer", and 11 additional tracks including the 1974 single "Child of Winter" and several previously-unreleased tracks from an aborted 1977 Christmas album.
- 2004: Christmas with the Beach Boys
- Essentially a reissue of Ultimate Christmas with a new title and cover art and one song ("Christmas Time Is Here Again") deleted from the tracklist. Like Ultimate Christmas, it omits "The Lord's Prayer" from the "Little Saint Nick" single.
- 2009: Christmas Harmonies
- Includes 11 of the 12 tracks from the original LP (including the single mix of "Little Saint Nick" and mono mixes of the other Wilson/Love compositions), as well as the alternate take of "Auld Lang Syne", the "Child of Winter" single, and two of the 1977 tracks.
|1.||"Little Saint Nick"||Brian Wilson/Mike Love||Mike Love||1:59|
|2.||"The Man with All the Toys"||B. Wilson/Love||Brian Wilson/Love||1:32|
|3.||"Santa's Beard"||B. Wilson/Love||Love||1:59|
|4.||"Merry Christmas, Baby"||B. Wilson||Love||2:22|
|5.||"Christmas Day"||B. Wilson||Al Jardine||1:35|
|6.||"Frosty the Snowman"||Steve Nelson/Jack Rollins||B. Wilson||1:54|
|1.||"We Three Kings of Orient Are"||John Henry Hopkins||Love/B. Wilson||4:03|
|2.||"Blue Christmas"||Billy Hayes/Jay W. Johnson||B. Wilson||3:09|
|3.||"Santa Claus Is Comin' to Town"||J. Fred Coots/Haven Gillespie||B. Wilson/Love||2:20|
|4.||"White Christmas"||Irving Berlin||B. Wilson||2:29|
|5.||"I'll Be Home for Christmas"||Kim Gannon/Walter Kent/Buck Ram||B. Wilson||2:44|
|6.||"Auld Lang Syne"||Trad. arr. B. Wilson||group||1:19|
|This section does not cite any references or sources. (December 2014)|
- The Beach Boys
- Al Jardine – lead, harmony and backing vocals; electric rhythm guitar; handclaps
- Mike Love – lead, harmony and backing vocals; handclaps
- Brian Wilson – lead, harmony and backing vocals; bass guitar; organ; handclaps
- Carl Wilson – harmony and backing vocals; electric lead guitar; handclaps
- Dennis Wilson – harmony, backing and spoken word vocals; drums, handclaps
- Session musicians and production staff
Orchestra Conducted by Benjamin Barrett. Special Arrangements by Dick Reynolds.
- Robert Barene – violin
- Arnold Belnick – violin
- Harry Bluestone – violin
- George "Red" Callender – tuba
- Frankie Capp – drums
- Gene Cipriano – woodwind
- Eugene DiNovi – piano
- David Duke – french horn
- Jesse Ehrlich – cello
- Virgil Evans – trumpet
- Jimmy Getzoff – violin
- Billy Green – woodwind
- Urbie Green – trombone
- Clifford Hils – upright bass:
- Bones Howe – percussion
- Robert Jung – woodwind
- Armand Kaproff – cello
- Raymond Kelley – cello
- Bernard Kundell – violin
- William Kurasch – violin
- Henry Laubach – trumpet
- Alfred Lustgarten – violin
- Arthur Maebe – french horn
- Lew McCreary – trombone
- Oliver Mitchell – trumpet
- Richard Nash – trombone
- Richard Perissi – french horn
- Al Porcino – trumpet
- Dorothy Ramsen – harp
- Lou Raderman – violin
- Karl Rossner – cello
- Henry Roth – violin
- Joseph Saxon – cello
- Wilbur Schwartz – woodwind
- Frederick Seykora – cello
- Paul Shure – violin
- Marshall Sosson – violin
- Darrel Terwilliger – violin
- Al Viola – electric guitar
Sales chart positions
|1964||US Billboard 200||6|
|1964||"The Man with All the Toys"||US Billboard Hot 100||3|
- Doe, Andrew Grayham. "GIGS64". Endless Summer Quarterly. Retrieved December 9, 2014.
- Badman, Keith. The Beach Boys. The Definitive Diary of America's Greatest Band: On Stage and in the Studio Backbeat Books, San Francisco, California, 2004. ISBN 0-87930-818-4 p. 72
- [[[:Template:Allmusic]] Allmusic review]
- Doe, Andrew. "RIAA". Endless Summer Quarterly. Retrieved December 9, 2014.
- Sanchez, Luis (2014). The Beach Boys' Smile. Bloomsbury Publishing. pp. 59–61. ISBN 978-1-62356-956-3.
- Sanchez 2014.
- Sharp, Ken (January 2006). "Christmas with Brian Wilson". <span />Record Collector<span /> (United Kingdom): 72–76.
- Boyd, Alan; Linette, Mark; Slowinski, Craig (2014). Keep an Eye On Summer 1964 (Digital Liner). Mirror. Capitol Records.
- The Beach Boys' Christmas Album CD booklet notes, David Leaf, c.1990.
- Ultimate Christmas CD booklet notes, Brad Elliott, c.1998
- Beach Boys' Christmas Album CD Versions (in Japanese)