10 Songs, 35 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Susan Boyle's heavenly inflections still sound easy on the ears, even a year after the drama of Britain's Got Talent has subsided and everyone has gotten over the initial surprise that a middle-aged Scottish woman can possess such an otherworldly voice. Her sophomore long-player is a Christmas-themed one, even though it opens with an over-the-top take on Lou Reed's "Perfect Day," dissolving (or maybe changing) the rock myth that Reed originally wrote the song about self-medicating with a lover. She also breathes new life into the often covered Leonard Cohen staple "Hallelujah," which provides a perfect segue between "Perfect Day" and the 1962 carol "Do You Hear What I Hear?" where Boyle duets with Amber Stassi, a 33-year-old New York paramedic who won an online contest to be a guest singer on Boyle's second album. And even though Crowded House's "Don't Dream It's Over" is about not letting the world's negativity get in the way of love, Boyle strips it down to a piano and a heartfelt delivery that somehow fits in well with more traditional Yuletide carols.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Susan Boyle's heavenly inflections still sound easy on the ears, even a year after the drama of Britain's Got Talent has subsided and everyone has gotten over the initial surprise that a middle-aged Scottish woman can possess such an otherworldly voice. Her sophomore long-player is a Christmas-themed one, even though it opens with an over-the-top take on Lou Reed's "Perfect Day," dissolving (or maybe changing) the rock myth that Reed originally wrote the song about self-medicating with a lover. She also breathes new life into the often covered Leonard Cohen staple "Hallelujah," which provides a perfect segue between "Perfect Day" and the 1962 carol "Do You Hear What I Hear?" where Boyle duets with Amber Stassi, a 33-year-old New York paramedic who won an online contest to be a guest singer on Boyle's second album. And even though Crowded House's "Don't Dream It's Over" is about not letting the world's negativity get in the way of love, Boyle strips it down to a piano and a heartfelt delivery that somehow fits in well with more traditional Yuletide carols.

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Customer Reviews

4 out of 5

668 Ratings

A Beautiful Gift

corybe,

Susan has done it again with a beautiful and timeless holiday gift to us all. The songs are true classics that will stand the test of time. God bless you Susan Boyle.

A "Gift" for the world

ca0911,

What a perfect way to begin the joyful holiday season. Susan Boyle can soar as she does in Oh Holy Night, reverently pray as she does in Make Me a Channel of Your Peace. Her voice is ethereal in A Perfect Day, quietly moving in Auld Lang Lyne, and in every track, she brings the unique quality that is Susan. I love this album and highly recommend it to anyone with a love of the season and of beautiful music.

About Susan Boyle

Amateur vocalist Susan Boyle became an overnight sensation after appearing on the first round of 2009's popular U.K. reality show Britain's Got Talent. Boyle, who was born in Blackburn, West Lothian, Scotland in 1961, caught the judges (and the world) off guard with her masterful rendition of "I Dreamed a Dream" from the musical Les Misérables, due in part to the unemployed and undeniably plain church volunteer's "salt of the earth" demeanor and country spinster back story. Boyle attempted a singing career in 1999, recording a handful of demos that showcased her rich and expressive voice, but chose to look after her aging mother instead of pursuing the dream full-time. Within hours of her appearance on Britain's Got Talent, Boyle was not only an Internet sensation, she was a world-wide phenomenon. Her debut album, I Dreamed a Dream, was released in 2009 and reached number one on both the U.S. and U.K. charts, setting a record in her homeland for first-week sales. I Dreamed a Dream was more than an instant success: it wound up as the second biggest seller of 2009 in the U.S. and topped charts throughout Europe. Boyle delivered a second album, the Christmas-themed The Gift, for the holiday season of 2010. Her third outing, 2011's Steve Mac-produced Someone to Watch Over Me, featured a diverse set of hits, including takes on classics like "Both Sides Now" and "Unchained Melody," as well as more modern material from the likes of Tears for Fears ("Mad World") and Depeche Mode ("Enjoy the Silence").

A year after Someone to Watch Over Me, Boyle returned with the concept album Standing Ovation: Greatest Songs from the Stage, which featured duets with Donny Osmond and Michael Crawford. This was her first album not to debut at the top of the U.K. charts; instead, it went in at number seven. In 2013, Boyle devoted herself to Christmas, making her acting debut in the feature film The Christmas Candle and recording the seasonal album Home for Christmas, which was released in October 2013; it went gold in the U.K. Almost exactly a year later, Boyle released her sixth album, Hope, which spent 35 weeks at number one on the Billboard Top Inspirational Albums chart. 2016's Wonderful World saw Boyle take on a genre-hopping set that included Madonna's "Like a Prayer," Paul McCartney's "Mull of Kintyre," and a virtual duet with Nat King Cole on "When I Fall in Love." ~ James Christopher Monger

  • ORIGIN
    Blackburn, West Lothian, Scotland
  • GENRE
    Pop
  • BORN
    April 1, 1961

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