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Vendor
Carpenters, The

Christmas Collection

4.7
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€40,00
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Regular price
€66,00
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  • Carpenters- Christmas Collection

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Customer Reviews

EXCELLENTGreat item, Always adding good music to my collection, this one sounds great and arrived in excellent condition. It shipped from the UK, the quoted lead time to CA was 10-14 days it arrived less than a week. Shipping was surprising low, less than $4. I have several of the original Carpenters 33 1/3 records, they were ok in there day but this one has newer studio re engineered sound quality is the best you can get. Karen is in the top 5 female if not number 1 of all time. If your looking for a Christmas album that will get you ready for the holidays the Carpenters will get the job done. So sad she left us at such a young age, what a contrast to lady gaga or Katie Perry.5and Richard does some solo singing and fantastic piano playing as wellIf you purchase only one Christmas album, get this one. It is a gorgeous collection of standards plus songs you have never heard before. Karen's voice, as usual, is glorious. There is also a full orchestra and chorus, and Richard does some solo singing and fantastic piano playing as well. I listen to it all the time even though it's not Christmas!5A CHRISTMAS MASTERPIECEI remember when The Carpenters were at the height of their popularity and in fact they lived right in my hometown. I remember I would be driving around town when one of her songs would come on the radio and even back then I felt like I had never heard anything as beautiful as her voice before.Karens voice ranks at the very top of female singers in our time. So I was looking for some really high quality Christmas Music for the family and landed here.I always read the 1 and 2 star reviews before I spend my money and was very leery about this after reading them. But I took the gamble and found that this Christmas Collection by The Carpenters is nothing short of Phenomenal and I listen to this more then any other ones I have collected. I am so happy I went ahead and bought this. I consider it one of my best purchases. It will become a Family Keepsake to pass down to the kids.5Perfect Christmas CD!Love, love, love this Christmas CD! Can't go wrong with the smooth, heartfelt vocals of Karen Carpenter. She is by far one of the best female vocalists ever, and her brother delivered on this CD as well; I didn't realize he sang so beautifully as a soloist. "Little Altar Boy" brought me to tears, as I'd never heard this song before. Every song is magnificently delivered with polished vocals and music. "Karen, you are dearly missed and deeply loved by me still. Thanks for the precious memories!"5Classic and TimelessAs a 40-something whose tastes have matured with the years, the appreciation for the genuine genius of Richard and Karen Carpenter has increased exponentially. I am old enough to remember hearing them on the radio as a kid, and while they didn't hit my radar until much later in life, it has been with decided relish that I've explored their work.The Christmas Collection, as has been pointed out, is a compilation release of two earlier albums: Christmas Portrait and An Old Fashioned Christmas. The earlier work (in this set, it is Disc 1) is the definitive Carpenter's Christmas. Richard's arrangements can only be described as lush, and the more one listens to these phenomenal orchestrations, the more one is awestruck by this gifted talent. And of course, Karen's vocals are flawless and spot-on, with unfeigned pathos in many of the more somber renditions.The style of this collection runs the gamut from the whimsical to the endearing. Her voice soars with haunting clarity on tunes like Christ is Born and the venerable Ave Maria. And no "modern traditional" Christmas is complete without their holiday signature song, Merry Christmas Darling. Sleigh Ride, Jingle Bells and other traditional secular tunes are fun and bouncy without becoming childish.The second disc in this collection, originally An Old Fashioned Christmas, is an organic continuation of the first disc, and played back-to-back, they form a seamless whole of enjoyable Christmas fare. The harmonies are rich without appearing over-produced. They even included one of the few New Year's tunes anyone can think of besides Auld Lang Syne (Frank Loesser's What Are You Doing New Year's Eve?)You don't have to be a Carpenter's fan to enjoy this offering. Chances are, once you listen to it a few times, you'll become one anyway. After nearly three decades since the first album was released, this special holiday gift has aged extremely gracefully, and I can no longer imagine a Christmas without it as a backdrop to the season.5One of the Top Christmas Albums EVERI'm a huge Christmas music fan and consider myself a Christmas music aficionado. At last count I had five 8-tracks, 4 cassettes, 18 LP's, and 64 CDs. This doesn't include the downloaded singles on my computer. I truly enjoy Christmas music much more than the average person. My particular passion is for the older, more nostalgic music that embodies the Christmas spirit, warmth, nostalgia, and traditions - primarily the 50's through the mid-70's. I do have a lot of music from the 80's to the present, but my fondness is for the good 'ole classics from Bing Crosby, Nat King Cole, Frank Sinatra, Ed Ames, John Denver & The Muppets (you must hear this one - see my review), The Partridge Family (yes, the Partridge Family), Elvis, Johnny Mathis, Andy Williams - you get the point.I already owned the first release of Christmas Portrait and did not realize this two-disc set was available until I stumbled across it here on amazon. Even without all the wonderful reviews I knew I would love this set.I agree with others that if you own only the LP from the late 70's (I do!) or the single-disc version that came out in the 80's or 90's (have that!), you must get this two-disc offering.The track listing on amazon for disc one (Christmas Portrait) isn't exactly correct due to a minor omission of O Come, O Come Emmanuel, which is a 28 second intro to the Overture, which is really track 2. Not a big deal, just a technicality.Richard's attention to detail for these albums, along with the arrangements, Richard's piano pieces on some of these songs (if memory serves me correctly, he didn't play on all of the arrangements) is phenomenal. Aside from Karen's angelic voice, the arrangements for these songs really make these albums and truly capture and embody that Christmas feeling and the nostalgia.What I find interesting about these arrangements is that Karen's voice is not heard on all of the songs, which was intentional. That in NO way makes this anything less than fantastic. The chorus on these songs brings back the days of old - I can almost smell that wonderful tinsel while listening to these discs.This is a must-have for anyone who thoroughly enjoys Christmas music whether or not you are a fan of the Carpenters or even know who they are.This is one of the best Christmas albums/discs ever recorded. Period.5Well worth havingI have the Carpenters' "Singles" album and this "Christmas Collection" is of the same outstanding quality. Richard is not only a marvelous performer but he is also a uniquely talented composer, arranger and producer. Of course, Karen is heard at her best and Richard's handling of the acoustics is superb. I never tire of listening to their performances. Richard's love for his sister is demonstrably evident in every piece that we hear. It is Richard's hand at the mastering controls that keeps Karen vocally alive and lovely as ever. His arrangements spotlight her giftedness. In his own right, Richard is a multitalented musician but he sublimates his own greatness in continuing to bring Karen to those of us who appreciate who she was. His devotion and affection make them an inseperable duo and this album is a masterpiece in its every detail and in its entirety. Pleasureable listening any time of the year, the Christmas Collection is especially poignant in the Holiday Season. Buy it, you'll treasure it.5... reasons why I think this has to be the best Christmas album everThere are several reasons why I think this has to be the best Christmas album ever. But i First have to talk about the original vinyl album. Reading through the previous reviews, It seems like no one gets what Karen was trying to do with the album. The clues are all over the album artwork. Its a portrait of what Christmas music was to her growing up as a baby boomer in the 50s and 60s. The album artwork took on the Norman Rockwell theme so that you would understand that she would do for Christmas music what Rockwell did for america, Give us the full picture. She never intended it to be the Carpenters sing the standard Christmas song list just like Bing, Dean, Andy, Johny, Frank, Perry and Elvis did. She wanted it to represent a wider variety of Christmas music. She uses two different methods to accomplish this. First she followed the beautiful music format that was used by FM Christmas music stations every Christmas, where the station mixes an instrumental, a slow singer, a fast singer, a religious song, a winter song and a funny song in a revolving order that keeps the listener tuned in. If he doesn't like what he is hearing now , he knows it will change with the next song. Second she brings in a new twist. She takes us on a ride. Similar to a Disney ride. She opens with a big glorious instrumental then whisks us along to the next stop. Many of the songs are written and sung only as segways to her next stop. That is why she purposely speeded up and shortened some of the songs and medleys. They represent you getting back on the ride and going to your next stop entertaining you on the way. The original vinyl album was cut as one continuous track from beginning to end with no place to set the needle down between tracks for two reasons, Karen wanted you to listen to it all at once and they packed so much music into each side of the album that there was no room for spaces. If you want music like Dean or Andy, you might not like this album. But if you enjoy Christmas music as a whole this is it.If you don't like the other Carpenters albums because of their standard Carpenters format you don't have to worry here. Karen knew that to cover Christmas properly she would need a full orchestra and a choir to back her up. I this respect the album has the same greatness of all the other great Christmas artists. This also has the Carpenters clean bright full range sound that only Richard could produce. I always used to pull out my Now and Then album when I wanted to test out the sound of a new piece of stereo equipment, because it had the best sound.If you look at the number of great songs that Karen left on the floor when producing this album you can see that she had a strong commitment to producing the Portrait. What other great singer has ever allowed so many minutes of their album to be playing music not by them. The other notable difference in this album is that it is the first great Christmas album done by a female vocalist, not just any vocalist but one who probably the best female vocalist of the 20th century. Sure there were other female songs and singers before her and there have been a lot more since her, but try and find a great female vocalist Christmas album before this. I am sure I have bored you by now, but all that I have said applies to the first vinyl album. The next special CD that was produced broke apart the flow that was in that original album by inserting 4 songs from the second album into the mix, making the portrait a little more blurry. The Christmas Collection was an attempt to bring back the original albums in their original form. The song are all there in their original form but the sound is different. Due to the poor condition of the original source material, it has been remastered. The sound is no longer as crisp as the vinyl album. I cant hear the symbols the bells and the chimes as prominently as I could on the vinyl. Some of these sounds are so subdued that you don't heat them at all. They also muddied up Karen's voice on the first album with reverberation. She has such a clean voice it is like a sin to do this. If you have never herd the vinyl and you don't have the first CD, this will still be a great album for you and I highly recommend it. If your one of those that don't like instrumentals and must have just Karen singing, buy this set and burn a single Karen only CD. Then you will have a great CD just like Bing and Dean. I wish they would release a Karen only CD because there are a lot of people who must have their Christmas music that way and there is still a lot of money that could be made there. I have purposely steered away from commenting on the songs. Let me just just say that Karen's (and Richard's) vocals can stand up against any of the other great Christmas vocals and the the instrumentals give Percy Faith and the other great orchestras a run for their money. It doesn't get any better than this.5Here's Why You Should BuyTwo words: Karen Carpenter: Two discs worth! This compilation is basically two different Carpenters Christmas albums packaged in one case. In my estimation, Karen had one of the most achingly beautiful voices of my lifetime. Sometimes I just want to cry listening to her sing. Richard's arrangements support Karen perfectly on these two CDs by staying out of her way and letting her shine while filling the room with a soft bed of beautiful, evocative music. We don't actually get to hear Karen till track 3, but Richard's overture makes it worth the wait. She kicks off the set by singing, "Frosted windowpanes. . ." and you know the rest! She shows off her amazing range on "Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas" and treats us to the seldom-heard verse of "The Christmas Song." The controlled swing arrangement of "Let It Snow" is loads of fun, and Richard's instrumental arrangement of "Carol of the Bells" is still one of my all-time favorites. Just when you think it can't get any better, track 13 pulls you up next to the Carpenters right in their element with "Merry Christmas, Darling." This is the classic Carpenters sound, and all I've gotta say is if Karen had sung this to me. . .well, I'll save that for another day! Disc 2 just amazingly pumps up the Christmas even one more notch with an overture kicked off by an a capella "It Came Upon a Midnight Clear" that absolutely thrills. There's a happy little "Nutcracker Suite" segment, and then once again Karen just melts me with "What Are You Doing New Year's Eve?" Wow!5A Christmas Carpenter TraditionThis set is a repackaging of the Carpenters' two Christmas albums, and it's nice to have them both in one place! I wore out both of my original CDs. Truly, it wouldn't be Christmas without Karen's lush voice singing "Ave Maria" and Richard's talented fingers rushing up and down the piano keyboard. I purchased this set as a "gift" for my partner, to replace the other CDs. And I got a gift, too, because she can't play them in our home without me hearing them (tee hee, snicker)! From the opening medley, which includes such gems as "The Christmas Waltz" and "Walkin' In A Winter Wonderland" and evokes snowy landscapes and ice skating parties, to the flying pianos work that Richard does between numbers and in the background, to the last note of the last song, the first CD, "A Christmas Portrait" is a pure joy. Though the second disc, "Old-Fashioned Christmas," is not the delight that the fist is, it is a wonderful Christmas album which respected classic Christmas music in a time when rock stars were remaking and "updating" them, sometimes beyond all recognition!The seller must have sent my merchandise as soon as s/he received it, because it arrived on the first possible day it could have. It was in a puffy envelope to protect the jewel case, and arrived in pristine condition. I couldn't be happier with it.5
Christmas Collection

Christmas Collection

4.7
Error You can't add more than 500 quantity.
Regular price
€40,00
Sale price
€40,00
Regular price
€66,00
Sold out
Unit price
per 
Save 39% (€26,00)