CD Review: James Taylor “James Taylor At Christmas (Extra Tracks)”

James Taylor
“James Taylor At Christmas”
Label: Universal Music Enterprises
Tracks: 14
Release Date: October 30, 2012
Running Time: 50 minutes

Our Score: 3.5 out of 5 stars

“James Taylor At Christmas” was released back in 2006 and it is being released this year with two new tracks.  The first track is Taylor’s French rendition of “O Christmas Tree” titled “Mon Beau Sapin”, which is only available on this collection. The second track isn’t really a Christmas track per se but it is Beatles cover for “Here Comes The Sun” with cellist Yo-Yo Ma. Still a fantastic and moving track. Also appearing the album are talented guest starts including Chris Botti, Natalie Cole and Toots Theilemans. This album has always been successful in getting into the holiday spirit over the years and I am sure it will continue now with this expanded release.

This collection includes some really great holiday favorites performed within Taylor’s unique sound.  There is a jazzy renditions of both “Winter Wonderland” and “Santa Claus Is Coming To Town”.  “The Christmas Song” (Chestnuts Roasting On An Open Fire) is really a perfect track for the holidays. Natalie Cole and Taylor deliver a wonderful duet with “Baby, It’s Cold Outside”.  I have to say though my favorite track is the cover of Joni Mitchell’s “River” and my least favorite is still “Go Tell It On the Mountain”, which is the one I always skip. The album also ends perfectly with the New Year’s classic “Auld Lang Syne”. James Taylor’s voice is really a nice marriage with the Christmas season.  I personally am a fan of simple and quiet Christmas songs and there is something for everyone here.  This will leave you not only inspired and but also full-blown in the holiday mood.

Track Listing:
1. Winter Wonderland
2. Go Tell It On The Mountain
3. Santa Claus Is Coming To Town
4. Jingle Bells
5. Baby It’s Cold Outside
6. River
7. Here Comes The Sun
8. Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas
9. Some Children See Him
10. Mon Beau Sapin
11. The Christmas Song (Chestnuts Roasting On An Open Fire)
12. Who Comes This Night
13. In The Bleak Midwinter
14. Auld Lang Syne



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