41 of 41 people found the following review helpful
In chronological order, this album comprises the eight Christmas songs that Elvis recorded in 1957, the one he recorded in 1966 and eleven tracks that he recorded in 1971. I'm not absolutely sure if this is every Christmas song that Elvis ever recorded, but if there was much missing I'd know about it. The eight 1957 tracks were made into a twelve-track album by the addition of four gospel songs recorded at around the same time but which aren`t included here; while those tracks wouldn't be out of place on a Christmas album, they are easily obtained elsewhere, especially on compilations of Elvis' gospel music. Indeed, when this particular Christmas compilation was first released, I remember it being available as part of a double album, with the other part being a compilation of Elvis' gospel songs. I didn't buy it then because I already had a double CD of Elvis' gospel music and had the 1957 and 1966 tracks, together with one of the 1971 tracks, elsewhere. However, I eventually bought this compilation, some time after it appeared as a single CD, to get the other ten tracks.
The 1957 tracks mainly comprised Christmas classics, though not everybody appreciated Elvis' interpretation of some of them. If those critics were shocked then, they got an even bigger shock when they heard the Phil Spector Christmas album six years later. At this distance in time, those 1957 recordings don't sound all that radical but they still sound distinctive. At least one original song (Santa Claus is back in town) was included, while another (Santa bring my baby back to me) sounds as if it could have been an original, but I don't think it is. I believe the solitary 1966 track (If every day was like Christmas) is also original.
The 1971 tracks offer a more adventurous selection, with just four well-worn classics (O come all ye faithful, First Noel, Winter wonderland, Silver bells), plus Merry Christmas baby (a classic, but not so well-worn) and a lot of tracks that may be original, but are in any case rarely recorded by other singers (On a snowy Christmas night, Wonderful world of Christmas, It won't seem like Christmas without you, I'll be home on Christmas Day, If I get home on Christmas Day, Holly leaves and Christmas trees). Some of the obscure songs are brilliant and deserve to be better known.
This is a great Christmas album that has plenty of familiar classic songs (about half the songs here overall) but also a fair number of obscurities, all delivered superbly by Elvis Presley.
41 of 44 people found the following review helpful
As someone who was only 2 years old when Elvis died, and someone who has become a massive Elvis fan, this release was much anticipated and welcomed.
A lot of fans on Elvis forums moan about BMG releasing material which already available, but i have to say they are wrong and very lucky. Many current artists don't get the amount of releases as Elvis does and to get old material digitally remastered, repackaged (this album has the best Elvis cover ever!!) is a joy, and also good for any younger new fans who don't own the older albums.
As for this album, 20 Christmas tracks, some old favourites plus some which were written for Elvis.
This album will be played on Christmas morning while our house opens all there gifts!!!
All in all a great album, gift, christmas!!
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 2 December 2013
This Christmas compilation is a compilation taken from Elvis's two big selling Christmas albums from 1957 and 1971, plus the track from 1966, "If Every Day Was Like Christmas".
It's the perfect seasonal offering that mixes some well known bluesy, pop tunes such as the classic "Blue Christmas" and "Santa Clause Is Back In Town" with beautifully performed traditional carols of the likes of "Silent Night" and "O Come All Ye Faithful".
I've always loved the feeling of the bluesy riffs in "Blue Christmas". "Merry Christmas Baby" is an epic performance. The 1957 Christmas top 10 hit "Santa Bring My baby Back to Me" is a slice of seasonal rock 'n' roll.
For the carols Elvis draws on his love of gospel music to deliver top quality performances that can't be matched elsewhere.
The effective and effortless combination of pop and traditional is a factor that makes this Christmas CD both unique and the perfect soundtrack to Christmas.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 25 January 2013
There are a few Elvis Presley Christmas albums out there but this one is definitely the best! This album has all the original versions of the songs, whereas the other compilations are either overdubbed with a duet or it's an album with some of these songs on and duets. I bought
this back a few years ago. I am not much of a fan of Christmas music in general and it seems to be the same old generic stuff on the radio and TV every year but this album is different.
As a massive fan of the man it was an easy choice for me to make because Elvis can sing just about anything and everything and it sounds good, so I knew this album was going to be the same. I was definitely not proved wrong; it's a very impressive and fantastic Christmas album. The CD has 20 of Elvis' Christmas songs from 1957- 1971. The album is a compilation of 2 original Christmas albums - 1957's 'Elvis Christmas album' and 1971's 'Elvis sings The wonderful world of Christmas' with the single 'If Everyday was like Christmas' from 1966in between. As a result we have pure Elvis Presley - not any remixes or overdubbed songs - these are in their original form just digitally remastered versions. This is why this album is far superior to any of the other compilation albums and if you decide to buy any Elvis Christmas album make sure it's this one. It's an album nobody will regret buying!
The original songs are just fantastic Christmas treats. Santa bring my baby back to me and Santa Claus is back in town are brilliant (the latter written by the writers of Hound dog Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller). Some of the songs I hadn't heard before which is a treat because most Christmas albums usually have the same covers which everyone has heard before. The covers are really good and probably some of the best covers of these traditional songs that anyone has done. White Christmas had a lot of controversy surrounding it on its release with the composer calling it a "profane parody of his cherished yuletide standard" and was banned from many radio stations! The first 8 tracks definitely convey the spirit of a more fun, young Elvis whereas the 2nd part of the album is smoother and more soulful.
This is 1 of the greatest Christmas albums out there by far and one you will want to pull out over the festive season for many years to come!
23 of 26 people found the following review helpful
on 8 December 2003
This festive collection is quite possibly the best ever. Certainly it's a collection of Presley's best festive tunes and that means it's certainly the best from any one artist. There may be multiple artist collections out there that deliver equal measure of warm festive cheer but I have yet to hear one that does so, so consistently. With the exception of a couple of lesser l971 tracks (hence not quite 5 stars) this collection is excellent and certainly THE one to have. As ever, Presley's ability to convey genuine emotion better than anyone is clearly evident here. Enjoy!