10 Songs, 29 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

George Strait is a natural for Christmas music. His signature blend of classy crooning and sprightly western swing is perfectly suited to “Winter Wonderland,” “Frosty the Snowman” and “Santa Claus Is Coming to Town.” After hearing Strait sing these songs you’ll swear they were written by Bob Wills. Few pop singers can pull off both “Away In A Manger” and “For Christ’s Sake, It’s Christmas,” but Strait elevates them with heartland conviction. Although he's more than capable of handling the classics, the real highlights here are the new songs. In “Merry Christmas Strait To You” he jazzes a melody worthy of Bing Crosby, while “When It’s Christmas Time in Texas” finally gives residents of the Lone Star State a Christmas song that has nothing to do with snow. Recording a Christmas album is a populist gambit for any performer, but even amidst all the holiday sentiment Strait stays true to his honky-tonk heart. The album closes with the superb Bakersfield heartbreak of “What a Merry Christmas This Could Be.”

EDITORS’ NOTES

George Strait is a natural for Christmas music. His signature blend of classy crooning and sprightly western swing is perfectly suited to “Winter Wonderland,” “Frosty the Snowman” and “Santa Claus Is Coming to Town.” After hearing Strait sing these songs you’ll swear they were written by Bob Wills. Few pop singers can pull off both “Away In A Manger” and “For Christ’s Sake, It’s Christmas,” but Strait elevates them with heartland conviction. Although he's more than capable of handling the classics, the real highlights here are the new songs. In “Merry Christmas Strait To You” he jazzes a melody worthy of Bing Crosby, while “When It’s Christmas Time in Texas” finally gives residents of the Lone Star State a Christmas song that has nothing to do with snow. Recording a Christmas album is a populist gambit for any performer, but even amidst all the holiday sentiment Strait stays true to his honky-tonk heart. The album closes with the superb Bakersfield heartbreak of “What a Merry Christmas This Could Be.”

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