Thomas Tallis (1505-1585), “Gloria” from Missa Puer Natus Est Nobis, on Christmas with the Tallis Scholars (2003).
It’s like a Christmas tradition around here.
McCoy Tyner, “I’ll Be Home for Christmas,” from God Rest Ye Merry Jazzmen (1981).
Billie Holiday sings “I’ve Got My Love to Keep Me Warm,” Charlie Shavers (trumpet), Tony Scott (clarinet), Budd Johnson (tenor saxophone), Carl Drinkard (piano), Billy Bauer (guitar), Leonard Gaskin (bass), and Cozy Cole (drums). Recorded in NYC, February 14, 1955 (Verve Records).
Earlier and I think better version with smaller ensemble. Jonah Jones (trumpet), Edgar Sampson (clarinet, alto sax), Ben Webster (tenor sax), Teddy Wilson (piano), Allan Reuss (guitar), John Kirby (bass), Cozy Cole (drums). Recorded in New York, January 12, 1937 (Vocalion Records).
Incidentally, 2015 is Billie Holiday’s centenary. Check out the tributes at billieholiday.com.
From East Tennessee Christmas (1985).
Steve Thrasher plays all bagpipes and drums here in this multi-track creation.
From Jazz to the World (1995).
From Live at the Village Vanguard (1961). John Coltrane (soprano sax), Elvin Jones (drums), Jimmy Garrison (bass), McCoy Tyner (piano).
“The Christmas Song,” from A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965). Vince Guaraldi (piano), Jerry Granelli (drums), Fred Marshall (bass).
Bill Evans (piano), from The Solo Sessions, Vol.2, recorded January 10, 1963.
Now, just hold on there. This post is not like one of those Christmas trees that doesn’t get thrown away soon enough and sits there shedding dried up old needles past New Year’s Day. No, officially, Christmas keeps going until January 6, the Feast of the Epiphany, the Twelfth Day of Christmas. I’m in the clear. So, I offer you the first movement of Bach’s Christmas Oratorio, which is not only still legit season-wise but also seems like an upbeat way to kick off our 2015 musical Sundays.
The Monteverdi Choir and the English Baroque Soloists, directed by Sir John Eliot Gardiner.
The incomparable Swingle Singers, with a long Medley from their album Noels Sans Passeport (1968) (Hey, I figured out what that means!) and the “White Christmas” with words at the end is from The Story of Christmas (1998).
Jingle Bells, El Noi De La Mare, Hanej – Nynej – Jezisku, Canzone Dei Zampognari, Les Anges Dans Nos Campagnes, Oh Tannenbaum, La Peregrinacion, Go Tell It On the Mountain, Away In A Manger, White Christmas (without words), White Christmas (with words).