Friday, December 18, 2020

Joel Paterson - Hi-Fi Christmas Guitar LP


 Ventrella (2018) 

This will be my last post for the year, at least until my annual Best Of that I typically put up on New Year's Eve.  And as usual, I'm going to close out with a new Christmas album.  I've been trying to make sure I buy at least one Christmas album on vinyl every year, to keep that collection growing.  I love Christmas music.  It gets a bad rep sometimes from the repetition of terrible songs, but if you do a deep dive, there is so much fun and rocking music to hear.

I do tend to prioritize old Christmas music, mostly recorded in the 50s and 60s.  To me, that's where the action is.  But every so often something new comes out that is actually good.  This happened in 2017 when Joel Paterson first released Hi-Fi Christmas guitar.  I was immediately taken in by his whirlwind of guitars. My very favorite Christmas album is The Ventures' Christmas Album.  While Joel is not playing surf rock, his record has a similar feel being totally instrumental with timeless Christmas melodies being arranged on guitar.

There's some jazzy tones, some rock and roll and even a couple of songs that border on that classical guitar virtuoso stuff.  Joel can play his ass off, but he never gets too bogged down in the technicalities and keeps the songs fresh and fun to listen to.  It's mostly standards with renditions of songs like "I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Clause," "Silver Bells," "Rockin' Around The Christmas Tree" and others of that ilk.  But for me, my favorite on here is the oft overlooked "Mele Kalikimaka."  It's a Hawaiian flavored tune, probably most famously done by Bing Crosby I guess.  But it isn't one that I typically hear around Christmas time unless it's on my Christmas playlist that I keep.  Joel's version hits all of the right notes and maintains the Polynesian flair of the song while showcasing his guitar chops.

I didn't buy it in 2017, because it was only on CD at first.  Luckily it came out on LP the next year, but I didn't actually realize it until we were in the thick of last year's Christmas and there was no way to get a copy delivered before the big day.  Luckily I was well aware this year and planned accordingly.  2020 has been brutal, but my mood brightens when I hear these songs.

Hope everyone has a great holiday and I'll be back on New Year's Eve with The Absolute Best Records of 2020.

Joel Paterson - Hi-Fi Christmas Guitar

No comments:

Post a Comment