Sunday, December 7, 2003

Celebrity favorites

Ernie Isley

Former Cincinnatian and guitarist for the Isley Brothers, the longest-running hitmakers in R&B

Nat King Cole, the whole album (Christmas Album; EMI Gold). My earliest recollections musically of Christmas, besides the songs you sing in school, were the sounds of Nat King Cole, starting with "The Christmas Song," written by Mel Torme. It's very soothing, comforting, familiar, and once you get past that, it's very well recorded, despite the fact that it was so many years ago.

Peter Frampton

Indian Hill resident and creator of the best-selling live album of all time, "Frampton Comes Alive"

A Very Special Christmas, the first one (A&M). It benefits the Special Olympics. The track "Winter Wonderland," by Eurhythmics, is our favorite.

Kim Taylor

Singer/songwriter/Kim Taylor Band leader

Vince Guaraldi's A Charlie Brown Christmas album (Fantasy). I love Vince Guaraldi, and I have lots of his other stuff. But I save that one for Christmas. It brings back a lot of childhood memories.

Reggie Calloway

Grammy-nominated performer/producer/songwriter and former leader of Midnight Star

This time of year, I simply must have a little bit of "The Christmas Song" with Nat King Cole singing, "Chestnuts roasting on an open fire."

Linford Detweiler

Keyboardist, co-leader of Over The Rhine (who have their own Yule disc, "The Darkest Night of the Year")

A Charlie Brown Christmas. (Vince Guaraldi's) piano playing on this record is just unbelievably perfect. It's simple and subtly complex, and it sounds like he's playing right there in our living room. I also love the rhythm section - very loose and funky and understated. They make those tired old Christmas carols sound so brand-new every year.

Ma Crow

Cammy-winning singer/guitarist with Ma Crow & the Flock

My favorite one growing up was Johnny Mathis' "What Child is This" (from Mathis' Merry Christmas; Sony). I do believe in all that stuff. I believe in all sorts of Christmas miracles. I believe in miracles every day."

Bootsy Collins

Funk bassist extraordinaire, Rock and Roll Hall of Famer

Nat King Cole's "The Christmas Song"

Noah Hunt

Singer and rhythm guitarist for the Kenny Wayne Shepherd Band

The Band's "Christmas Must Be Tonight" (Islands; Capitol) - that's my favorite by a rock band. It's about the birth of Christ, which is what Christmas is all about, after all.

Contenders vie for comics page

Tune up for the holidays with seasonal CDs
Celebrity favorites
Christmas best-sellers
Levee club hooks big names
Spoleto lands Baryshnikov
Documentary explores award shows
Playhouse true to Dickens
Dead man walking is predictably 'Stiff'

Greater Cincinnati's Benefits and Bashes
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