It’s the Holiday Season. Listen to Something Good. #NowHearThis
“A Christmas Gift For You” 1963
The holidays aren’t the high-water mark for music nerds. Comfort, schtick, and a never ending sense that “repetition = reverence” tends to lead to a lotta flash and a lot of flab. Is this a hot take to anyone? X-mas music is rough, even if you love it. However, there exists one revered piece of classic bombastic, the ’63 “Wall of Sound” masterpiece- “A Christmas Gift for You”.
Recorded at the legendary Gold Star studios, Spector sat behind the mix and liberally applied that “Wall” tone- blending acoustic and electric instruments while the gain subtly creeps up until you can’t tell that it’s Cher singing backing vocals or that Brian Wilson’s piano track, that he lobbied to record, was removed back in first cuts. Instead- you hit the Wall; horns on top of horns, high hats mixed with organs and Darlene Love, until you realize you’re awash in nothing but Holiday merriment and pure Hi-Fi.
Ms. Love is joined by label mates and legends The Crystals, The Ronettes, and Bob B. Soxx and The Blue Jeans (what a name), taking every secular Holiday hit for a spin, making jingle bells ring with a swing that scratches that carol itch in a way nothing else does. Wait a minute… are we loving X-mas music? For these precious 34min, you bet your red velvet stockings we do.
Happy Holidays Beersmith Faithful!