As the holidays approach, you can count on hearing lots of Christmas music and it’s the same today as it was sixty years ago. The Rat Pack had a lot of common talents with perhaps the most obvious being their singing abilities, so it’s only natural that they would put out Christmas albums. Let’s have a look at their greatest holiday hits.
Of course, Sammy Davis, Jr. was Jewish so it stands to reason that he didn’t do many Christmas songs, but there is one in particular that has become a staple with those that love very good holiday performances - Christmas Time All Over the World. What’s really interesting is that this recording wasn’t released until 2002 on the album, Christmas with the Rat Pack, which is a marvelous choice if you’re only going to get one record for the season.
Now Dean Martin had some real commercial Christmas success. His 1966 release, The Dean Martin Christmas Album went to number one and Blue Christmas was actually put out as a single. The song is usually associated with Elvis Presley, but Dean’s version is simply gorgeous too.
A listing of Frank Sinatra’s top forty hits actually includes three Christmas tunes, but the somber, pure, heartfelt rendition of Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas was his most successful. The song was introduced by Ol’ Blue Eyes’ special pal, Judy Garland, in 1944 for the film Meet Me in St. Louis, but I just don’t think it’s possible to sing it any better than The Voice. It’s no surprise the song is consistently one of the most played Christmas tunes.
There is no shortage of versions of all the top holiday songs and there are some great recordings, but my preferences always lean toward Sinatra when I want something on the turntable. His unparalleled ability to embrace each note with meaning is what ends up delivering a perfect performance. May each and every one of you have a very Merry Christmas!