Customer Reviews: Christmas Jollies
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on December 8, 2001
My family has listened to this album every Christmas Eve since 1976 (I was two)! I can't believe they sell this LP on CD! I am sooo excited that I bought a copy for my brother in TX, one for my sister in CA, and one for myself (in PA). We still listen to the original LP at my parent's house every year.
I'm amazed that so many other people feel exactly how I do about this album. Christmas just isn't the same without it! I can't stop smiling!
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on December 14, 2011
I owned a couple vinyl copies of this album from back in the day, and I know it well. It was one of my favorite Christmas albums as a kid. I knew something was up the minute I saw that they had photoshopped a new Santa Claus dress on the cover model to cover up the crease of her butt. This is not the original album cover.

Some of the arrangements on the tracks were also changed, and not for the better. In fact, some of them sound pretty bad. The new Silent Night is just one example--with that awful acoustic piano drowning out everything else. That piano piece is an overdub. It was not in the original recording. Overall, the timbral quality of the sound on this CD is 'tinny', as though they had held up a transistor radio to a tape recorder to re-record the music. Somebody attempted to re-engineer the original and messed up the sound quality pretty badly. This CD lacks the heavy, throbbing rhythm and bass that the vinyl LP had. Yet another example of a classic ruined by some fool's attempt to modernize it.

If you want the real SalSoul Christmas Jollies that was originally released in 1976 you're either going to have to hunt for a vintage vinyl copy or look for a CD print that was NOT "re-mastered" by the jokers who released this version. This looks and kinda sounds like the original Salsoul production, but it isn't.
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on December 14, 2009
Trust me, it's with no joy, that I will write what I will, it's just that I'm very disappointed in this item, and with the reasons you will see below.

I was fortunate enough to purchase the original 1976 Cassette and the first CD, I believe in 1993 at The Bay, here in Montreal. The CD we have is from the original LP recording and not the awful 2006 re-issue, which is said to be re-mastered. It's not remastered, but new arrangements have been added to the original recordings, and it's just a really badly botched "cut & paste" job.

I'd like to know why the original CD went out of print in the first place? How could Vince Montana Jr. let those guys re-work such a nostalgic Christmas masterpiece? What is this crap? I downloaded the entire 2006 re-issue last night on the net (not on itunes, but somewhere else), cos it's not even available on i-tunes.
The remastering is downright AWFUL!

I don't like the updated drums parts, and I definitely do NOT like the 2:09 version "Silent Night" with guitar and piano arrangements. It's awful!
I won't even burn it to a CD or put it on my ipod, cos it does absolutely nothing for me like the original 1:08 orchestral version does, from the original CD, LP and cassette. All the voices are the same on the remastered version, but all the noisy, poorly-layered additional arrangements totally spoil the CD.
They didn't have to add the "New Year/Americana Suite" on there either.

Why I rated the album 2 stars is because I do enjoy the new version of "The Little Drummer Boy" because it's got an instrumental intro, and then the voices come in a minute later and the song goes on almost as normal, except for the really evident xylophone arrangement.

Don't bother running around on the internet for the downloads of the original version, cos there aren't any. Everyone sells the new version of the CD and only has the new versions on mp3, if you want to download them from limewire or wherever else.

I guess I'm one of the lucky few with the original 1993 version on CD. If you look around, perhaps you'll find the orignial version on CD in a toy shop or a convenience store, or perhaps even Zellers or Wal-Mart.
Since the original is out of print, the new one is the only version you'll find in most retail stores or online.
The new version totally spoils the feeling of the album for me, because this is the ONLY album I listened to during the holidays as a kid. I'm 34 now, and started listening to the cassette way back in 1980. I won't even bother putting the new version on my ipod, cos it's just not the same feeling anymore, til I go across town and get the original CD from my parents, which I will do this afternoon.
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on December 4, 1999
I love this album. It was given to me for a present years ago and I listened to it every year. I no longer have a turn table so I am very pleased it is on CD. I would also like the other Christmas Albums by SalSoul on CD but have not been able to find them. This album really gets you in the mood for Christmas.
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on January 22, 2006
I used to own this on vinyl and played it constantly. When I saw it was available on CD I had to get it. But when I listened to the CD, I was slightly disappointed in how different it sounded. The "remixed" versions aren't as good as the original vinyl recording and there are some slight changes especially noticeable in the Christmas Medley. Also, I feel the New Year's/Americana Suite was an unnecessary addition (I usually stop the CD before it gets to this track). Overall, it is still a good collection of holiday just doesn't have the same feel to it that it used to.
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on March 11, 1999
My mother brought this album home Christmas of 1975. We have baked cookies, wrapped presents and decorated to this album ever since. My mother's turn table broke and we have not been able to play it for the past couple of them. She is going to be so pleased when we can this year on the CD player. I am sooo!!! pleased. We can go on with our lives now. Christmas just is not be the same without it!
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on December 16, 2001
I thought I was the only one looking for this album! I had a tape that my kids and I played when they were growing up and I lost it. My kids are now adults and they ask every year have I found the SalSoul Orchestra Christmas Album--it's part of their Christmas memories. I thought it was not available though I, too, had looked everywhere for it. It's my favorite and now I want my granddaughters to enjoy it just like my daughters did. I'm ordering one for myself and one for each of my daughters. I can hear the music in my head just typing this. It's the best! And this is from cold Minnesota.
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on December 24, 2014
Good remastering of the original album - but the bonus track that is supposed to be the "45 RPM Mix" of "Merry Christmas All" is identical to the album version - i.e. the same track is on the CD twice ! (If there is a different mix or version of that song on the original 45, it's not here - they used the album master by mistake) Friday Music has done this before at least once that I'm aware of first-hand (on their reissue of George Benson's In Flight album). To make it worse, the track "Little Drummer Boy" was released in an edited single version, and should have been included here, but is not.
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on January 9, 2014
I remember when i was kid listening to this entire ablum for christmas while we put up decorations and tree.... its definitely a very festive music that entertains any household.. Totally enjoyable both child and adults....
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on August 21, 2001
Tired of the same old same old Christmas songs & carols? Tired of being at some holiday celebration & the music is so stale & boring you can't even bring yourself to get up & dance? Well, then, THIS COLLECTION IS JUST FOR YOU! As soon as it hits your turntable you'll be in the mood to really shake your groove thing. Be warned, though-if your friends want to 'borrow' it there's no guarantee that you will get it back-I write this from experience. All of these tunes are great but of course the one that gets the most air-play is the always terrific Merry Christmas All by Denise Fontana. Even if you only need one 'party' album for the holidays, this should be the one to get. Very highly recommended.
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