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Christmas on Death Row Explicit Lyrics

3.5 out of 5 stars 20 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Explicit Lyrics, December 5, 1996
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Editorial Reviews

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Yes, even gangstas get a little sentimental around holiday time, as proven by this interesting artifact from the days when Death Row's family was still having happy get-togethers. Snoop Doggy Dogg kicks things off in appropriately 'hood-centric fashion with his take on James Brown's "Santa Claus Goes Straight to the Ghetto," but this set is more than just tough talk: Hard-as-nails Michel'le softens her stance a bit to turn in a surprisingly lovely "Silver Bells" and the Dogg Pound kicks in with a positive vibe on "I Wish." On the downside, the performers are mostly drawn from the second tier of Death Row's roster, which means you get far more of Danny Boy and Six Feet Deep than the Doggfather. --David Sprague
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (December 5, 1996)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Explicit Lyrics
  • Label: Interscope Records
  • ASIN: B000001Y3G
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #389,523 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
I admit I didn't have this album when it was released in like 98 or something, but I've had it for a good three or four years. I remember seeing it chillin in the bargain bin for a whoppin 4.99 at the local Wherehouse Music and I thought Why Not? If I didn't like it I could burn it and return it(say it was scratched) and if I liked it I could just keep it. A win-win situation. So I got it and popped it in and was pleasantly surprised. This is, as reviewer Nathan stated, a sincere holiday album.

Christmas On Death Row contains soulful interpretations of classic songs such as Silent Night, Silver Bells(Go Michele!!!), Christmas Song (Danny Boy), Frosty The Snowman, O Holy Night, This Christmas, Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas, and Christmas Everyday. All of the these songs are sung beatifully with nice backdrops; they stay true to the original yet put a slight urban spin on the sounds. Yet, they are still recognizable and completely enjoyable. Santa Claus Goes Straight To The Ghetto by Snoop, Bad Azz, Daz Dillinger, Tray Deee, and Nate Dogg is believe it or not a classic. They rap about life in the ghetto at Christmas time; yes they stay on topic and tell some christmas stories. I Wish by the Dogg Pound is another great song. The Pound talk about dreams, wishes, and aspirations on this song. Greatness. The best song to me though is the Nate Dogg blessed Be Thankful. Nate Dogg really shows his chops on this one singing about how he's blessed and thankful for his family and friends. A Masterpiece. The only songs worth throwing away are Christmas In The Ghetto and Party 4 Da Homies, which are mindless rapping tunes with cursing (in a holiday album? Control yourself please) which gives the album the Parental Advisory sticker.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
There should be more hip-hop for this to be a true reflection of Death Row's roster of artists at the time, but there are some gems nonetheless. Nate Dogg delivers an original song, "Be Thankful", which actually ranks with the best of his G-Funk Classics material. Tha Dogg Pound also stand out with the thoughtful "I Wish", while Snoop Doggy Dogg (and guests) enjoyably rip off James Brown's "Santa Claus Goes Straight To The Ghetto" (while sampling Isaac Hayes' classic "Do Your Thing"). The rest is mostly average, but I did enjoy Danny Boy's version of Donny Hathaway's "This Christmas" (the best original Christmas song of the 1970s).
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Format: Audio CD
Death Row pulls out all the stops! They got all they stars in this joint! The only ones missing is Dr. Dre, Tupac Shakur and, for the most part, Snoop Dogg.

But they got 6 Feet Deep! Guess! Sean Barney Thomas! and even Danny Boy (whoz got da best rapper moniker, handz down! What'z a badder image than one of an old Irish guy in a sweater dancing jigz, yo? If you know, let me know! [call my cell])

Plus, yo, the packaging tearz it up! You can tell they literally got a pretty good artist to not just do a first drizaft drawing for the cover but also color it in and use Photoshop some! My man also used some perspective when drawing the little gift packages so they look like they in a 3-d space and all that!

But, back to the trax! Therez one called "Santa Claus Goes Straight to the Ghetto"! And it has stuff about Santa doing' weed! Which is so not the image of Santa we've got! Thus makin' it hilariouzzz!

It would take a mad week or two for me and my unmusical friends to crank out a joint wif the same quality as this! So much eazier to just go buy this!
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Format: Audio CD
Is there any route to dollars untried by formidable Death Row boss and frankly scary hip-hop mogul Suge Knight? Well no actually, and the reissue of the Row's '96 festive chancer proves that long after the talent and even ideas for commercial scams have run dry, Knight is still looking for gold.
Things weren't too good for Knight and Death Row even back then, this album was released after Dre quit the label and its sagging mid-nineties-R&B-by-numbers vibe is a dead giveaway for a label at sea without a creative captain.
Other than the amusement of soul interpretations of carols and Christmas staples including 'Silent Night' and 'Frosty The Snowman' - you know 'Music To Smoke An Ounce To After Your Turkey' - the majority of this is depressingly humourless. There are some great quotes, like the none-truer observation, "Christmas time is a time for chillin' ". But that's it.
What the album revealed in '96 and reinforces with its reissue this year is that Knight's business head isn't smart enough to realise that the punters can only be patronised for so long. No investment in talent, no long-term return. It's hard to conceive of Death Row as anything other than a spent force milking the last few drops so that it's investors can finish furnishing their Malibu retirement homes.
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Format: Audio Cassette Verified Purchase
As an Old School Hip Hop fan and a devout Messianic Jew who loves Christmas, this album is perfect. The whole family can bob their heads to this joint all winter long. The only risqué song on here is Christmas in the Ghetto, which has a couple of F and N words. Other than that all I can say is I'm still celebrating Christmas in January by listening to this album.
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