Wednesday, December 16, 2009

meet my lost christmas album: christmas with bing crosby & frank sinatra

This album is "lost" in a couple of ways.  It's the missing college-era cd that I couldn't blog about on Monday.  I still haven't found it, which makes me worry that I discarded it in the last cd purge I did.  Don't think me heartless--there are very solid reasons for not owning it.  Plus I realized today at work that I had the songs on my old computer, so they're not completely lost (Until a few minutes ago when I fired it up to listen to Bing & Frank, my old computer had been sitting unused and ignored since I got my laptop a month ago).  Eventually the music on the old computer is going to need to come off it and onto the new computer or that external hard-drive I've been eying with my amazon gift certificate in hand. (Do you know the part where I won a $75 amazon gift certificate in a contest on  Because I did, and it was awesomely timed, in that I won it the week after I'd placed a huge amazon order of Christmas presents, so now I have to use it on myself.  Score.)
So what was I talking about?  Christmas music?  Hmmm . . .
Oh, the other reason this cd is lost is that I can't find accurate cover art for it anywhere.  I found a couple cds online with the same creative title, but the art isn't just right, and for the ones with track lists, they're not the right ones in that respect either.  I can describe the cover, if you want.  It's white with a red border and individual pictures of Bing & Frank, and has the name of the cd on it somewhere.  I'm amazed I can remember that much detail.  But I can't direct you to a website for you to purchase your own copy, once you're inspired by my insightful song critiques because I can't find it.  Sorry.
It had been a while since I listened to this one, so it's been playing while I've typed the above paragraphs, and I'm still not feeling too guilty for misplacing this one.  It's not that the songs are bad--it's a standard mix of Santa songs and Jesus songs, mostly songs I've got in some form or other on other cds.  The problem with this cd has always been the sound quality.  I didn't buy this one--although based on the artists involved and the song selection, I would have, so I can't fault the person who gave it to me.  Did you ever record songs from the radio onto cassettes back in the day?  It sounds kinda like that, only maybe it sounds more like you had a handheld tape recorder that you were holding up to a record player.  It's a shame.  But given the top-notch quality of my other Christmas albums, it's just not worth it to me usually to listen to this one, though it does contain the only recording I possess of the ultimate version of "White Christmas."
Anyway, I'm not going to go too in-depth on the track-by-track here.  I've discussed most of these songs before--or I will be on future albums.  I've covered my feelings for Sinatra singing Christmas songs.  I've made no secret of my adoration of Bing and a certain snow-themed Christmas tune.  This won't be the last time I have occasion to talk about these two in relation to my Christmas soundtrack.  So I'm going to run through the playlist here, lament the sound quality once or twice more, and call this one finished.
1.  "The Snowman" This is the one unfamiliar song on the album.  It's less than two minutes long and not noteworthy in any particular way. (Speaking of "noteworthy," is anyone else watching the show The Sing-Off on NBC this week?  Noteworthy is/was one of my favorite groups on there.)
2.  "Jingle Bells" Brief and tinny-sounding, though the song itself is charming and lively, just as it should be.
3.  "Deck the Halls" blah, blah, blah, bad sound, some background singers here.  Nothing special.
4.  "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen" I used to absolutely hate this song because of some childhood trauma.  I don't mind it as much anymore, but it'll never be a favorite.  I can't think of another cd I own that has this song.  That doesn't break my heart.
5.  "Hark! The Herald Angels Sing" I may not have this one anywhere else either.  I kinda like it--makes me think of It's a Wonderful Life, especially this version that has a group singing it--not just Bing & Frank.  I haven't watched George Bailey yet this year.  Maybe if I ever get around to wrapping presents, I can take care of that.  I should watch White Christmas while I'm at it.  Then it will really be Christmas.
6. "O Come All Ye Faithful"  Mac loves for Bing to sing this song in Latin.  It's all English here.  Not bad, but for the sound quality.
7.  "It Came upon a Midnight Clear"  I like this one.  Very slow and stately, but man, it's practically static-y, and that part's not so cool.
8.  "Away in a Manger"  I like this song better than this normally. 
9.  "Santa Claus Is Coming to Town"  It's definitely not a Springsteen version--it's not even a Michael Bolton version.  This song is going to appear at least twice more on my Christmas soundtrack.  Better not waste all my words on it here.
10.  "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer"  I only have two versions of this song in my collection, and I can't wait to talk about the other one--which means I don't need to talk about this one, though if I could just briefly mention the poor sound quality on this album once again, I'd feel like you were getting your money's worth.
11.  "The Christmas Song"  There's something annoying going on with this version.  I can't even talk about it because it makes me not even like Frank & Bing, and I don't need those thoughts in my head.
12.  "White Christmas" Oh, Bing.  It's your song.  Sing your song.  I guess on the second time through, you can even let Frank sing too.  Then you can wish us all a merry Christmas at the end.  And I can die happy--or I could, except for the sound.  Too bad about that sound quality.
The end.  You're welcome.  See you tomorrow or whenever.


  1. I have that same CD I think. Is there little interaction between them like Frank is visiting Bing's house; Bing offering a hot drink, etc.? Maybe that's the one I have called, "An evening with Frank Sinatra and Bing Crosby" or something like that.

  2. I didn't know you had "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen" trauma, too. I thought that was just me.
    We had to introduce ourselves in Bible class the other night and tell our favorite Christmas carol. I could not pick a favorite, and those folks were amazed that I had 45 Christmas songs on my ipod. Since then I have thought of a few that I would like but don't have.


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