I’ve already written about my 5 favourite Christmas Jazz albums here, not to mention the recent post about Joey Alexander’s Beautiful Christmas Jazz EP.
But some of my readers complained (rightfully so) that I’ve neglected the Jazz genre a bit on this blog. So just a handful of day before Christmas, let me point you to two beautiful Christmas Jazz compilations by two great labels.
A Concord Jazz Christmas
Concord Jazz is a great label that unfortunately has a bit disappeared from the map. Nevertheless, this best of Christmas Jazz is really worth it.
My favorite titles are Scott Hamilton’s Christmas Love Song, and obviously, being a great Gene Harris fan, I’ll Be Home For Christmas. But overall, the album avoids the overly cheesy territory and rather stays on the swinging side. Note that Concord also released a V2 of this album later, which I find much less appealing (even if it has some beautiful tracks)
Verve Presents: The Very Best of Christmas Jazz
The legendary Verve label obviously has released a number of Christmas albums over the years. However, this must be one of the best.
Look at the list: Ella Fitzgerald (obviously), but also Kenny Burrell, Shirley Horn, Bill Evans, John Coltrane, Jimmy Smith, Oscar Peterson. Kind of the Verve All Stars.
You get a beautiful version of A Child Is Born with Oscar Peterson, Bill Evans Playing Santa Claus Is Coming To Town, and even a great Jingle Bells by Jimmy Smith. And yes, it also includes Rudolph, The Rednose Reindeer, Ella’s Christmas classic.
Again, an album that while giving you a nice Christmas feel, avoids the sugary overkill of some more contemporary collections.
Both are highly recommended.
My rating: 4 stars
Wishing all of you some relaxing Christmas days, or whatever other holiday you’re celebrating this year end!