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Monday, November 29, 2010

A wonderful Christmas from Christian

I had misgivings about Christian Bautista doing a Christmas album. I thought, not after Jed Madela and certainly not with the same producer, Ito Rapadas. Jed has this choir boy voice that is perfect for Christmas songs. Christian is more of the pop crooner. Well, maybe if he did only romantic Christmas songs, he might be able to hack it. But his style might come out inadequate for the soaring carols.

I was wrong. Christian’s A Wonderful Christmas produced by Ito is now available and it is good. I had forgotten that Christian has matured as an artist and should be able to interpret songs his own way. It was also good of Ito to give him light and easy arrangements that suit him best. I like most of all the Mariah Carey original All I Want For Christmas. Christian’s version is more rock than soul. Very nice.

Then I find turning a hymn like Amazing Grace into a folksy ballad backed by piano and guitar a brilliant idea. I also like his finger snapping Last Christmas, plus the jazzy Silver Bells and Christmas Alphabet. Then I wonder where they found the unheard of Christmas Shoes. It is a very sad song but is also so full of the Christmas spirit.

There is also The Gift Of Christmas, a duet with Liza Chan-Parpan of a Michael Chan composition. Remember, Liza is the daughter of the famous Jose Mari Chan. Their duet of Christmas In Our Hearts is one of the biggest-selling recordings in local pop music history. She should be able to bring lots of luck to Christian’s album. Besides, although Jose Mari did not write the song, his son Michael did.

Also included are the lovely Nakaraang Pasko by Tats Faustino which still sounds new, Christmas Time, which Christian co-wrote with Jordan Bautista and Ito, plus the standards The Christmas Song; Little Drummer Boy; What A Wonderful World and the traditional, Angels We Have Heard On High, O Come All Ye Faithful and It Came Upon A Midnight Clear. You can listen to these throughout the season and should find lots more to enjoy next year and the next, etc.


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