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Gary Puckett: Studio 102 Essentials

Gary Puckett

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Album Review

On this holiday CD released on his own GP Music label, popular '60s singer Gary Puckett begins a mix of religious and secular tunes with a medley of "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen"/"What Child Is This?"/"Angels We Have Heard on High." It's that distinctive and distinguished voice, which on radio is so good, powerful, and always out front in the mix. That's his trademark, and it's used to good effect here as well. Puckett could be the Perry Como or Bing Crosby of the rock set if times were different — but having to man things with his own staff, Puckett is one of the artists of the new millennium who must put a grassroots effort in place to do the work the major labels used to perform on artists' behalf. The politics of radio, not the high quality of the music on a disc like this, is what determines what will become future memories for the generations to come. "Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow! could slip nicely onto any oldies radio station during the Yuletide season, even with its jazz overtones. "Away in a Manger" adds a guitar riff from the 1983 Stephen Bishop hit "It Might Be You" (the theme from the film Tootsie) to good effect, while "White Christmas" has sparse keyboard accompaniment — the music taking a back seat to Puckett's perfectly in-tune voice. The CD features 11 selections in all, produced with clarity and sure to satisfy Gary Puckett's fans and those who collect seasonal recordings.


Formed: 17 October 1942 in Hibbing, MN

Genre: Pop

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '90s, '00s

During the late '60s — a period forever distinguished as rock's most radical, innovative, and far-reaching — Gary Puckett and the Union Gap forged a series of massive chart ballads almost otherworldly in their sheer earnestness and melodrama. Likely the only pop band of the era to play two nightly shows in the Catskills — the early gig for their younger fans, the later appearance for the fans' parents — the group pioneered the hip-to-be-square concept two decades before spiritual...
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Gary Puckett: Studio 102 Essentials, Gary Puckett
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