Carpenters - Christmas Portrait

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The Carpenters: Karen Carpenter (vocals); Richard Carpenter (keyboards). Additional personnel includes: Bob Messenger (tenor saxophone); Pete Morgan (acoustic bass); Joe Osborn (electric bass); Ron Tutt, Barry Morgan, Cubby O'Brien (drums). The Carpent...


ITEM#: 3224407

The Carpenters: Karen Carpenter (vocals); Richard Carpenter (keyboards). Additional personnel includes: Bob Messenger (tenor saxophone); Pete Morgan (acoustic bass); Joe Osborn (electric bass); Ron Tutt, Barry Morgan, Cubby O'Brien (drums). The Carpenters were just about the last adult pop outfit of their era with anything resembling rock credibility (they did have a little of the latter in the early days, and weren't a kid act like the Osmonds) who could have pulled off a straight Christmas album. And they did it in superb style here, illuminated throughout by the delightful, complex, often playful arrangements, courtesy of Peter Knight, Richard Carpenter, and Billy May. Actually, for a change on a Carpenters album, Richard is the dominant personality on display across this record, as both co-arranger and producer, as well as the mastermind behind the project; Karen Carpenter's voice is also prominent, to be sure, most notably on "Merry Christmas, Darling" and "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas," and she threw herself into this next-to-last completed project (and their final release before a two-year hiatus), but it's Richard who comes to the fore everywhere here, in ways that are impossible to ignore. And the results are mightily impressive, as the mood never slackens in what amounts to a wall-to-wall celebration of the Christmas holiday. After a suitably festive introductory section, Karen Carpenter's solo voice comes up on the "Christmas Waltz" and the proceedings really take off, carrying us into the most engaging rendition of Leroy Anderson's "Sleigh Ride" that has come down in many a year, and it only gets better from there, through a brace of holiday staples that end up sounding fresh in her voice and his arrangements. There's not a slack moment on this album, which is also, curiously, one of the few Carpenters' albums that managed to sound good in every CD edition so far released on it (most of the others needed to be upgraded). ~ Bruce Eder


Dimensions 5.4x4.8x0.4
UPC 075021517325
Runtime 69 min.
Type Performer
Genre Rock & Pop
Sub Genre Christmas
Label A&M Records
Producer Richard Carpenter
Number of Discs 1
Track Listing Disc 1
  • 1. It Came Upon a Midnight Clear
  • 2. Overture: Happy Holiday / The First Noel / March Of The Toys / Little Jesus / I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus / O Little Town of Bethlehem / In Dulce Jubilo / Gesu Bambino / Angels We Have Heard On High
  • 3. Old-Fashioned Christmas, An
  • 4. Christmas Waltz
  • 5. Sleigh Ride
  • 6. It's Christmas Time
  • 7. Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas
  • 8. Santa Claus Is Comin' to Town
  • 9. Christmas Song, The (Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire)
  • 10. Carol of the Bells
  • 11. Merry Christmas Darling
  • 12. Christ Is Born
  • 13. O Holy Night
  • 14. Home For the Holidays
  • 15. Here Comes Santa Claus / Frosty The Snowman / Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer / Good King Wenceslas
  • 16. Winter Wonderland / Silver Bells / White Christmas
  • 17. Ave Maria
  • 18. Overture Miniature / Dance Of The Sugar Plum Fairies / Valse Des Fleurs
  • 19. Little Altar Boy
  • 20. I'll Be Home For Christmas
  • 21. Silent Night
Format Compact Disc
Spars Coding AAD
Artists Carpenters

Customer Reviews

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  • Hard to find music. My wife really wanted to find.

    I've been looking at your company for years and for some reason have never used it.My experience with your company was great and very easy to use. Maybe in the future i will continue buying from your company.

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  • One of the Best!

    I bought this for my daughter who moved 2,500 miles from home. I played the cassette tape of this Carpenter's Christmas in our family van every Christmas when my children were small. Every year from Thanksgiving to the middle of January we enjoyed the beautiful voice of Karen Carpenter. When my daughter and her friend made a long distance trip once and the radio was hard to tune in to, they played this tape the WHOLE trip! And it was only October! Needless to say, her friend fell in love with the Christmas music of The Carpenters! When my daughter moved, I just HAD to get this for her. She absolutely LOVES it! You just can't go wrong with the beautiful, soothing sound of Karen Carpenter's voice.

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  • carpenters christmas CD

    I have always been a fan of the Carpenters and was looking for a Christmas Cd, found it on Overstock. It is a great CD, has all the good oldies. I would buy it again. Thanks Overstock.

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  • CD Review

    My kids complained about the X-Mas music that I had going in my car this past season. They talked about this CD as being their favorite--especially when they were younger; how I played it all the time. This is Christmas to them; so I wound up buying it. Carpenters' are always good music no matter what the season!.

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  • A Christmas Gift

    This is one of THE best Christmas CDs to own ever, jam-packed with that signature Carpenters holiday sound. Karen Carpenter has a timeless voice. Way too many favorites to list, but 'Merry Christmas, Darling,' 'I'll Be Home for Christmas' and 'Home for the Holidays' are just a few great standards you'll find. Also terrific are their instrumentals. A must-have for every Carpenters fan and a must-try for those unfamiliar with this uber-talented brother-sister team. In my house, Christmas just isn't Christmas without this gem.

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  • Christmas memories

    This is a wonderful collection! Karen Carepenter's clear beautiful voice is very well suited for this material. The songs are from different areas: popular, religious and contemporary. It is so much fun to listen to! It's the perfect way to "get" in the Christmas spirit!

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