Liberal Grace

Thursday, November 30, 2006

My new CDs for Christmas 2006

What I'm listening to this year.

Collecting Christmas music has been a hobby of mine for years now and I have a big collection since I buy a few every year. Here's what I bought for 2006.

Sufjan Stevens - Songs for Christmas

You'll find Sufjan Stevens listed under "Punk" or "Alternative" but this five disk boxed set (yes, that's correct -- a five CD box set for $20) is folksy and minimalist.

What strikes me is how respectful Stevens is of the holiday. I have other "punk" Christmas CDs which mostly take a poke at the holiday since that's the punk thing to do. In contrast, I get the impression that Stevens is trying to personally revive the holiday on his own terms through music.

Brian Setzer Orchestra - Dig That Crazy Christmas & Boogie Woogie Christmas

The other artist I've discovered this Christmas is Brian Seltzer of the Stray Cats fame. Probably like a lot of people, I kind of forgot about him but I realize that he has been actively pursuing his music, including an interesting revival of swing music, infusing it with rock and roll. He has two Christmas albums in this genre and they both are great swingin' rockin' fun.

This is the one I'd play at a Christmas party, for sure!

Some people say the second one is better but, honestly, they kind of sound the same to me -- a good sound but not much different. I'd recommend buying whichever is cheaper. Or buy both!

This is his first Christmas release that you have to buy used.

This is the current one that's still in active release.

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