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A High School Christmas Performance

  • Nov 25, 2010
When you have a tv show the heavily revolves around music and where the ratings seem to do the best during "themed" episodes, it was inevitable that GLEE would have a Christmas album. The show was too new during it's first season, but now that it's no longer a rookie, it's not very difficult to imagine a Christmas album being an annual tradition as long as GLEE is on the air.

The songs on the album are as follows:

1. "We Need a Little Christmas"
2. "Deck the Rooftop"
3. "Merry Christmas Darling"
4. "Baby, It's Cold Outside"
5. "The Most Wonderful Time of the Year"
6. "Last Christmas"
7. "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen"
8. "O Christmas Tree"
9. "Jingle Bells"
10. "You're a Mean One, Mr. Grinch"
11. "Angels We Have Heard on High"
12. "O Holy Night"

I don't think I've ever heard the song "Deck the Rooftop" before, so I don't have anything to compare it with, but that's probably the most original song on the album. The rest of the tunes are a mix of class Christmas carols and pop Christmas songs. My favorite song on the whole album is "Angels We Have Heard on High" which is sung by Amber Riley (Mercedes). It's one of the only truly Christmas songs (meaning songs actually about the birth of Christ) on the album. "O Holy Night" sung by Lea Michele (Rachel) is the other. "Angels We Have Heard on High" has a level of sincerity to it that "O Holy Night" doesn't. "O Holy Night" is a beautiful song and Lea Michele does a wonderful job of performing it, but that's all it is: a performance. It seems to lack the sincerity of Riley's rendition of "Angels We Have Heard on High." "O Holy Night" is often sung by vocalists as a showpiece and that's the reason it's included on this album.

I was a little taken back by the version of "Baby, It's Cold Outside" because instead of being sung between a man and a woman, the GLEE version features a duet between two men. I have seen that song performed by two men before, but the only times I've seen that one of the guys was in drag and pretending to be a female. Those were very funny versions of the song. Beyond that, the number is usually sung as a playful part of a romantic duet. While there is some definite playfulness between Chris Colfer (Kurt) and Darren Criss (Blaine), this version of the song doesn't have the warmth of all other romantic versions I've heard. I understand what the producers were doing, but it just doesn't work.

As for the rest of the songs, it was nice having a couple of tunes featuring the vocals of Matthew Morrison (Will Schuster). Some of the other songs have been "jazzed-up" and "modernized." I guess they are trying to appeal to a younger demographic, but at the loss of any real connection to the music. Sometimes the traditional approach is best.

Overall, I was disappointed by GLEE: THE MUSIC, THE CHRISTMAS ALBUM. I thought the album would be a good display of the vocal talent on the show. Instead, there really isn't too much impressive here and the album comes off as being a recording of a high school Christmas showcase.

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December 10, 2010
I have to disagree with you about "Baby, It's Cold Outside." I think their duet was quite charming and very warm, especially with the blend of their two distinct voices. Darren puts more investment in his part because he's the chaser and Chris sings quite lyrically as he should since he's playing the coy one. They are lovely together, and it's reflected in their voices.
December 11, 2010
Overall, I was disappointed by the album as a whole. I didn't think "Baby, It's Cold Outside" was terrible, but it seems rather ho-hum to me (I've listened to it several times and my opinion is the same). But, that's just my opinion. Thanks for a positive opposing comment.
More Glee: The Music, The Christmas... reviews
review by . November 20, 2010
posted in Music Matters
Album Review: Glee: The Music – The Christmas Album
Christmas is still weeks away but Glee's gotten an early start on the holiday gift-giving season by delivering to its fans a special Christmas-themed album. These 12 tracks are some of the music to be featured in the Christmas episode "Sue The Grinch." Track-by-Track:   The album starts off with "We Need A Little Christmas" and features the underdogs of the show – Tina, Kurt and Mercedes. Really, this is a straight interpretation of the song equipped with …
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Glee decks the halls and gets you in the holiday spirit with the release of Glee: The Music, The Christmas Album. The Glee cast sprinkle a little Christmas cheer with their dazzling renditions of such holiday classics as “We Need A Little Christmas,” “O Holy Night,” “Jingle Bells” and a very special Dr. Seuss inspired “You’re A Mean One, Mr. Grinch” featuring Grammy Award winner k.d. lang. 12 songs to fill your holidays with Glee!

Track Listings
1. We Need A Little Christmas (Glee Cast Version)
2. Deck The Rooftop (Glee Cast Version)
3. Merry Christmas Darling (Glee Cast Version)
4. Baby, It’s Cold Outside (Glee Cast Version)
5. The Most Wonderful Day Of The Year (Glee Cast Version)
6. Last Christmas (Glee Cast Version)
7. God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen (Glee Cast Version)
8. O Christmas Tree (Glee Cast Version)
9. Jingle Bells (Glee Cast Version)
10. You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch (Glee Cast Version)
11. Angels We Have Heard On High (Glee Cast Version)
12. O Holy Night (Glee Cast Version)
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