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Christmas Hymns and Carols

Mario Lanza Audio CD
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)

Price: $15.96 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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Amazon Price New from Used from
MP3 Music, 14 Songs, 2012 $5.49  
Audio CD, Import, 2010 $6.90  
Audio CD, 1992 $15.96  
Vinyl --  
Audio Cassette, 1992 --  

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (March 30, 1992)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: RCA Camden Special Products
  • ASIN: B0000038P9
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #277,779 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Format:MP3 Music
This mp3 of the RCA/CAMDEN 1963 album of CHRISTMAS HYMNS AND CAROLS (CAS-777-e) is a reworking of that company's 1956 Red Seal LP, LANZA SINGS CHRISTMAS CAROLS (LM-2029). Two tracks from this earlier record were eliminated ("It Came Upon a Midnight Clear" and "Deck the Halls"), with the 1952 single "O Holy Night" added. Playing order is completely shuffled.

Stereo reprocessing isn't noticeable over speakers. Using headphones, one senses that sibilance is centered, all else pushed a bit right and the deepest bass tones at far left soundstage. These aren't at all prominent, nor has obscuring echo been added.

Mario Lanza, born Alfredo Cocozza in 1921, was RCA VICTOR's first Red Seal artist to receive a Gold Record and to sell 2.5 million units. Although an influence on many later tenors, including the famous trio of Pavarotti, Domingo and Carréras, Lanza only appeared in three operas. He did however star in THE GREAT CARUSO (1951), and that is why many think of him as a opera star.

When Cocozza signed a seven-year film deal with MGM in 1947, he took as his own an adaptation of his mother's maiden name, Maria Lanza. After three successful movies, Lanza ran afoul of MGM studio head Louis B. Mayer and was fired. His subsequent WARNER pictures didn't do as well, and there were many cancellations on concert tours due to failing health.

Mario, who was a binge eater all his life and battled alcoholism after the MGM firing, suffered a minor heart attack in early 1959, then he had double pneumonia in August.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mario Lanza = THE ULTIMATE December 20, 2000
By A Customer
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
My parents had this CD in record form when I was young. I was so happy to hear it again! "The Lord's Prayer" is perfect. "Guardian Angels" is moving beyond words. All of the Christmas songs are incredible, particularly where there are climactic endings (such as "The First Noel"). This is an absolute treasure of a Christmas collection!
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The most wonderful Christmas Collection Ever December 12, 2000
Format:Audio CD
This collection has been in my family for years. We pull it out ever year and listen to Mario Lanza's wonderful voice. Time can never change the feelings that come up when I listen to this collection. The Guardian Angels song is a must for anyone that truly loves the Christmas Story.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Greatest Christmas Album Ever July 26, 2004
Format:Audio CD
I remember this album from the few Christmas records my parents had when I was a very young child, which they would play only once or twice a year. Listening to this album at such a young age formed the visual impressions of the Christmas carols that to this day I still see whenever I hear them. Mario Lanza sang with such passion, I can actually remember trembling to his haunting rendition of Guardian Angels. I guess to a 3-year old it is actually a pretty frightening song. I am thrilled that this album is finally available in CD format and will become a permanent addition to my collection.
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Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
This review pertains to the Hallmark CD release of "Christmas Hymns and Carols". The material itself warrants 5 stars and this is one of my all-time favorite Christmas albums. The sound quality of the Hallmark release and problems getting the CD to play in a couple CD players is why I'm rating it 2 stars.

Mario Lanza's Christmas performances from the early 1950s are golden classics. I have several copies of this album on vinyl, cassette and CD, plus the collected songs on other Christmas CD releases by Mario Lanza.

The Hallmark version has the worst sound quality of all of them. It is labeled "Original Recording" on the cover, but that doesn't mean remastered.

When I received this new CD, my CD player rejected the CD as incompatible. I put it in another and the same thing happened. But after repeated insertions, it did play.

I believe this is a bootleg. This Hallmark issue is not on RCA/BMG, Camden, RCA Red Seal or Sony, the companies that would have the original masters. RCA Red Seal was Mario Lanza's original record company. This CD issued by Hallmark is marked "Made In The Netherlands" under the UPC bar code.

It sounds like it was mastered from either a cassette tape, or possibly an old mono copy of the Camden LP, with the treble control rolled off to suppress surface noise or tape hiss. The sound quality is dull. There is a minor amount of bass in the dynamic range, but little clarity with the treble. It sounds like it's sourced several generations down from the master tapes, probably from a consumer level product. There is even a skip in one of the songs, so maybe it was sourced from vinyl.

I compared the sound to some of the earlier RCA/BMG CD reissues.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Memories of my childhood January 9, 2013
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
This was one of 3 or 4 LPs that my parents played each Christmas while decorating our home for Christmas, and I remember hearing it as far back as I can think. Many happy memories came back while listening to this on CD - an improvement over the earlier LP-quality sound inasmuch as sound quality goes. Lanza's rich voice, his range and emotion come through each song, and you cannot help but find yourself mesmerized by his singing.

A very worthy addition to your Christmas music collection.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Lanza sings Christmas
Love this album My mom play the record when I was a child. I have always enjoyed it during the holidays.
Published 9 months ago by ANITA A CASSELLA
5.0 out of 5 stars The Second Carusoe indeed.
The power of his voice is astounding,the choice of songs lovely. Highly recommended for anyone who enjoys his style of singing.
Published 9 months ago by Bonnie L. Foster
5.0 out of 5 stars The Pure Voice
This is one of the original Christmas recordings of Lanza that I had ever heard as a child. His voice is as pure and fresh as ever!
Published 10 months ago by Donald Castellano-hoyt
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best Christmas CDs
This is one CD that every lover of Christmas should own. The magnificent voice of Mario Lanza is beautiful, touching,and stirring and expresses in words the true meaning of... Read more
Published 14 months ago by Tricia Hulin
5.0 out of 5 stars I love Mario Lanza
I am so glad to have this on CD. There will never be another like him. May he rest in peace
Published 14 months ago by msmartha
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Music, Great Service
Everything went like it should. I received what I ordered and in a timely manner. I have been enjoying my CD eventhough it is not puts me in a good
mood. Read more
Published on July 7, 2012 by Randy Henrickson
4.0 out of 5 stars Powerful Lanza
This album we own on record but the CD quality is superb. My brother is a bigger fan of Lanza than I am, but this album is great. Read more
Published on December 28, 2007 by GTTF
I really like this album (and the cute picture of Mr.Lanza on the cover) of one of Lanza's best Christmas collection. Read more
Published on November 30, 2003 by R. Elliott
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