Tuesday, December 16, 2008
With eight days left before Christmas, I wanted to spend today looking at several new Christmas albums on the shelves this season - perhaps a last minute gift guide for those who love Christmas music.
This is review number eight today - my final one for Review Tuesday.
You've probably never heard of this gentlemen so let me take a moment to introduce you to him. Larry Pestor is well known throughout the music and advertising scene of my hometown of Fort Wayne, Indiana. This is a man who wrote and sold a radio jingle to Saudi Arabian Airlines right after the Iraq war began! And Larry don't speak Arabic!
I first became aware of Larry when an article was published in the Fort Wayne Journal Gazette back in April of this year. The line of the article that stood out was "Pester will even turn your 78 rpm records into digital files for you."
Armed with a small stack of 78s, Larry has helped me immensely this year; the transfer of the "Dragnet" Christmas LP was done at his studio.
Larry has always had a desire to do a Christmas album and he finally stopped procrastinating about it this year. Recording it was no problem considering he was not only playing on the album but producing it.
There are ten tracks of standard Christmas music on this album. Nothing overblown, nothing pretentious, nothing that sounds bad. Larry handles the piano beautifully and adds guitars and synthesizer just at the right moments.
My favorite tracks are "Away In A Manger" (I know it's synth but it sounds like the musical glasses), "Angels We Have Heard On High", and "Joy To The World" has some of the best piano work I've heard in quite a while on any Christmas album.
In short, this is a very good Christmas album that deserves to be heard. In this day and age of the same 50 songs being played on Christmas radio, I would love to hear music like Larry's on the radio now and then.
You can spend $10 on an album like Neil Sedaka and get totally blindsided. Or you can spend $10 on an album from an artist who's poured some time, effort, and sweat into his project.
If you're interested in this album, check out his website. Tell him the Captain sent you...