The Christmas season is almost here – that time of year when the indelible sound of the late Harry Lillis Crosby once again takes the airwaves. This year, however, there may be a twist. On November 22, Decca Records will release Bing at Christmas, melding Crosby’s classic vocals with new orchestrations recorded by The London Symphony Orchestra. Nick Patrick, producer of similar symphonic albums from Elvis Presley, Buddy Holly, and Roy Orbison, helmed Bing at Christmas.
“White Christmas,” of course, is included among the album’s 14 tracks. It’s still the world’s best-selling single with over 50 million copies sold and 1.8 billion streams, and probably the most beloved Christmas song of all time. Irving Berlin’s standard, introduced by Crosby on a Christmas Day 1941 radio broadcast was immortalized by the crooner the following year for Decca. It’s presented twice here – once as a duet with Pentatonix and once solo. Bing and The Andrews Sisters’ immortal swing rendition of “Jingle Bells” is featured, too, with The Puppini Sisters, spiritual successors to Patty, Maxene, and Laverne, adding new vocals. The Puppinis show up on “The Twelve Days of Christmas,” too. They’re not the only special guests: The London Symphony has reinterpreted the classic “Little Drummer Boy/Peace on Earth” duet with David Bowie, while The Tenors have added new vocals to Mel Tormé and Robert Wells’ “The Christmas Song.” (Like “White Christmas,” it’s also heard in a solo version.)
Bing at Christmas also showcases “It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas,” “Sleigh Ride,” “Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!,” “Winter Wonderland,” and the wartime favorite “I’ll Be Home for Christmas” among its instantly-recognizable tracks. Bing’s widow Kathryn Crosby, who announced the release with their children Harry, Mary, and Nathaniel, notes in the press release, “Hearing Bing’s voice with these completely new, beautifully recorded, orchestral accompaniments makes it seem as though he’s back after all these years. It’s magic.”
Look for Bing at Christmas from Decca on November 22 on CD and digital/streaming formats. You’ll find the track listing and pre-order links below. You might also want to take a listen to the first single, “White Christmas,” streaming now!
- It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas
- Sleigh Ride
- Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!
- White Christmas – feat. Pentatonix
- I’ll Be Home for Christmas
- Jingle Bells – with The Andrews Sisters, feat. The Puppini Sisters
- Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas
- Do You Hear What I Hear?
- The Christmas Song
- Little Drummer Boy/Peace on Earth – with David Bowie
- Twelve Days of Christmas – feat. The Puppini Sisters
- Winter Wonderland
- The Christmas Song – feat. The Tenors
- White Christmas (Solo)