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Christmas Collection

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Album Review

In 1998, A&M released the original Carpenters' albums for the first time on CD. Along with the reissues, the label released Christmas Collection, a double-disc that combines Christmas Portrait and An Old Fashioned Christmas on one set. Neither album offers any surprises — they sound exactly like you'd imagine a Carpenters Christmas album would sound like. Since the two albums are virtually interchangeable, relying on Richard's famously light, inoffensive arrangements and Karen's sweet, soaring vocals, they make for a terrific pairing. It is true that only hardcore fans will need this set, but they should be more than pleased by this definitive collection.

Customer Reviews

The Ultimate Carpenters Christmas Set...

Worth every penny spent.

This set give you both of the Carpenter's Christmas albums, released in 1978 and 1984. Karen had a voice that was build for this sort of material. Her readings on " Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" rivals Judy Garland's reading from the movie " Meet Me in St. Louis." The depth of emotion is clear. She also does equally well on other Christmas tunes and she does an awesome job with " Ave Maria " a song that is not easy to sing. Richard's arrangement for " Santa Claus Is Coming to Town" takes a normally upbeat song and turnes it in to almost a love song and the low notes that Karen hits are spellbounding.

Of course I am happy hear the Carpetner's classic " Merry Christmas, Darling " every year on the radio. It was a # 1hit on the Holiday charts in 1971 and for just shy of 40 years it has been delighting fans of the Carpenters and casual listeners alike.

This is essential Christmas and holiday fare for listenting as you trim the tree or while entertaining. Karen's vocals set the background nicely and mix well with other Holiday selections.

5 out of 5 stars...

Don't bother

Buy the Christmas Portrait album, this collection has bits of unwanted material from portrait. It's not worth that amount of cash.

Excellent Christmas music!



Formed: 1968 in Downey, CA

Genre: Pop

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s

With their light, airy melodies and meticulously crafted, clean arrangements that appealed to a variety of audiences, the Carpenters stood in direct contrast with the excessive, gaudy pop/rock of the '70s; yet they became one of the most popular artists of the decade, scoring 12 Top Ten hits, including three number one singles. Karen Carpenter's calm, pretty voice was the most distinctive element of their music, settling in perfectly amidst the precise, lush arrangements provided by her brother Richard....
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