Ingrid Michaelson – Songs For The Season – Deluxe Edition
Many major singers of an earlier generation who were famous for turning out seasonal classic songs year after year are with us no more. While I don’t usually do Christmas music this exceptional one deserves a mention.
Ingrid Michaelson’s voice is not Rosemary Clooney, Doris Day, Peggy Lee, or Ella Fitzgerald but she does have an exceptional delivery on her marvelously rewarding set of Christmas tunes.
Songs For The Season – Deluxe Edition (Drops Dec 5 – Cabin 24). It’s a warm production with Ray Ellis-type strings (Billie Holiday on “Lady In Satin” LP) added for that 50s traditional sound. There’s a richness to each melody with snow, the smell of pine, candles, tinsel, wreaths & snow globes.
“Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow” is delightful. Ms. Michaelson puts it over with class. Each musician & backup singer’s contribution: stellar. Many holiday songs are dangerous classics for a young singer to tackle. But Ingrid does so bravely. She’d get the nod, yes, yes, yes from the masters.
The arrangements have clarity & have what’s often not considered – the tradition of the holidays, the magic in the tonality. Her voice has it. Maybe it’s the playful, youthful, innocence of her voice. But with “Have Yourself a Merry Christmas,” Ingrid’s voice is filled with sincerity & poignancy. She injects freshness into each & they’ll easily survive into another century.
Will Chase joins Ingrid on “I’ll Be Home for Christmas,” — one of the best. Maybe I’m sentimental, but this is what a Christmas LP should be. Ingrid needs to duet with Johnny Mathis (who for many years had one of the bestselling Christmas LPs in history. Sold 500,000 in 1960, certified 5 million in 2013. It charted almost every year since 1958).
An original beauty comes with Ingrid’s own “Happy, Happy Christmas,” & it fits perfectly. The orchestra & chorus perform with brilliance. A new classic.
Please understand that these songs aren’t solely for Christians. They’re songs of brotherhood, family, friendship. The hope for better, peaceful times no matter how far-fetched it may seem. Having, if nothing else, (whatever your persuasion) that we are in actuality, one people.
We may have different skin colors, but we bleed red & all breathe air. These symbolize being one with the world. There’s no discrimination in Christmas songs. Ingrid sings for everyone. It’s a time to begin again.
Listen while decorating a tree, hanging a piney wreath, lighting a menorah, or incense. There’s nothing more powerful than 2 opposing people sharing holiday spirit even if it’s “not their holiday.” It’s a universal day with universal music. Made to forgive & forget.
If a holiday LP can get you into the spirit, this is it. 12-cuts + 5 bonuses with no showboating – just delicacies. You’ll feel the spirit of Christmas on your skin.
Color image: Shervin Lainez. CD available @ Amazon & https://www.ingridmichaelson.com/music
Find more interesting holiday music on our website, for example here: REVIEW: Jesse Terry “Peace – A Christmas Collection” and here: REVIEW: Lori McKenna “Christmas is Right Here”