CHICAGO – Christmas 2019 (2019)
Christmas is coming soon, and the legendary CHICAGO gets into the spirit of the Holiday Season with “Christmas 2019”, an album that mixes original Christmas songs and yuletide favorites.
Produced by founding member Lee Loughnane, “CHICAGO Christmas 2019” is the 37th album of the band’s career and its fourth holiday collection. Whereas its previous releases focused more on traditional Christmas songs, the new record spotlights holiday music the band wrote especially for the album, including “All Over The World,” “(Because) It’s Christmastime,” and “I’m Your Santa Claus.”
The album also features ‘Chicago-ized’ and ballad versions of “Merry Christmas, I Love You,” a song that Loughnane wrote with John Durrill of The Ventures, the best-selling instrumental band of all time.
Along with the new songs, the album also features the band’s interpretations of two holiday standards: “Here We Come A Caroling” and “Sleigh Ride.”
It’s the second time Chicago has recorded “Sleigh Ride.” A different version appears on Chicago XXXIII: O Christmas Thee (2011). The album’s other non-original track is a soulful Chicago interpretation of the Hal David and Burt Bacharach classic, “What The World Needs Now Is Love,” which founding member Robert Lamm thought had a timely message for the holidays.
“Chicago Christmas 2019 “features original compositions by many of the band members, along with unmistakable horn arrangements by founding member James Pankow. The album was recorded and mixed by Tim Jessup.
This is not your typical Holiday album, it’s essentially a Chicago album doing Christmas songs, yes, but ‘Chicago-ized’. The music runs the gamut of their long and storied career as Chicago has explored about every style of music, from jazz-rock to horn-filled Soul, L.A. WestCoast AOR and Rock ‘n roll.
01 – (Because) It’s Christmastime
02 – All Over The World
03 – Bring My Baby Back
04 – Merry Christmas, I Love You (R&B Version)
05 – What the World Needs Now Is Love
06 – All Is Right
07 – Sleigh Ride 2019
08 – I’d Do It All Again (Christmas Moon)
09 – I’m Your Santa Claus
10 – Here We Come A Caroling
11 – Merry Christmas, I Love You (Ballad Version)
Robert Lamm – keyboards, vocals
Keith Howland – guitar, vocals
Lou Pardini – keyboards, vocals
Brett Simons – bass, vocals
Walfredo Reyes Jr. – drums
Lee Loughnane, James Pankow – horns
Ray Herrmann – saxophones, flute
Neil Donell – vocals, acoustic guitar
Ramon “Ray” Yslas – percussion