Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Genres: Special Interest, Pop, R&B
Last fall, eight-time Grammy-winning singer Anita Baker returned to the pop music scene after a ten-year hiatus with a gorgeous new album released on Blue Note Records entitled My Everything. After a triumphant year, Baker... more »
Listen to Samples
Last fall, eight-time Grammy-winning singer Anita Baker returned to the pop music scene after a ten-year hiatus with a gorgeous new album released on Blue Note Records entitled My Everything. After a triumphant year, Baker is back with a brand new holiday album: Christmas Fantasy. Baker arranged all nine tracks with producer Barry Eastmond, and penned three, for this soulful album, which includes such yuletide classics as "O, Come All Ye Faithful," "I'll be Home For Christmas," and a sweet rendition of "Christmas Time is Here". Baker first gained prominence with the smash success of her 1986 release Rapture (Elektra Records), following up with four more hit platinum albums and multiple Grammys for soulful classics such as "Caught up in the Rapture," "Giving You the Best that I got" and " I Apologize." Her debut release for Blue Note Records, My Everything was released in September 2004, debuted at #4 on the pop charts and quickly went gold. The album has received countless accolades including two Grammy Award nominations (Best R&B Record for "You're My Everything", and Best Traditional R&B Album) and several #1 radio singles.
Similarly Requested CDs
A smooth jazz fantasy almost fulfilled.
music fan | los angeles, california United States | 10/16/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Smooth jazz fans must be going crazy - this is the Christmas CD of their dreams. George Duke, Larry Carlton, Joe Sample, The Yellowjackets - AND Anita Baker on vocals. What more could they ask for?
Although impeccably and tastefully performed, 'Christmas Fantasy' is in danger of being rather sleepy though - background music for holiday cocktail parties. "Frosty" is given a novel 'New Orleans' treatment. And the title track is a passable original.
But it isn't until the last half of this CD that you can feel some of Anita's passion. "Moonlight Sleighride" is a jazzy original with a little more energy. "O Come All Ye Faithful" is beautifully performed and "Family of Man" is an original delivered with the same warmth Anita sang the touching "Men In My Life" on her "My Everything" CD. The ensemble really comes alive on an energetic version of "My Favorite Things" to close out the relatively short set.
All in all, its an easy and unobjectionable CD to stick in the player - and you won't be hitting the skip button if you are wrapping presents while you listen. My christmas fantasy would have been fulfilled had the passion and warmth of the best tracks been infused throughout."
Nice Christmas/Jazz CD From Anita, but ONLY 9 TRACKS?
chakasworld | Atlanta, GA United States | 12/13/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I enjoyed listening to 'Christmas Fantasy' by Anita Baker, but it fails to be certified a classic due to it's lack of enough 'holiday' music. All in all, I appreciate Anita combining her promised jazz album with a long overdue Holiday collection, but the price is simply too high for only 9 songs. Anita is in fine voice, and she displays wonderful jazz sensiblities, so long time fans should be satisfied.
I deducted a star from this project because it only has 9 tracks, and the cover art really fails to convey that important Holiday Spirit or Season to the consumer. The old picture (circa mid 1980's!) on the cover looks like someone scared Anita during the photo shoot, or that she wasn't really in a good mood. To fortify this short CD, I recommend that fans remaster the CD by adding Anita's LIVE renditions of 'The Christmas Song' (fr.'Jazz To The World' CD 1995) & 'Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas' (fr.'Holiday Seasons' 1993). Used copies of these CDs are still available on Amazon for only a few dollars."
Now THIS Is What I'm Talkin' About From 'Nita B!
Chicago Music Fan | Chicago, IL United States | 12/11/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I have been a fan of Anita Baker from the beginning, and thinks she does what she has done very well, but I have felt that her sound has been a very predictable, non-chance-taking, mellow R&B type of music for awhile. It was very refreshing to see that she took this mostly jazzy turn on her Christmas offering, because I always thought she would be well suited to this type of music, both vocally and with her history of collaborating with some good "jazz" players on all her past albums. I have read some say that there is not a lot of Christmas feeling on this CD. Well, it doesn't have jingles jingling or choirs choiring (is that a word?) in the background, but it felt like a Christmas album to me!
I believe the thing is that it is a VERY jazzy Christmas album; it starts with the jazzy arrangements of the songs, then goes down to the fine musicians taking great solo turns with the arrangements, which finally allowed 'Nita B. the opportunity to serve up a more jazzy flavored vocal that some of her fans may not be so used to. I loved it!! I even thought the first track, "Frosty's Rag", was an interesting New Orleans flavored turn on the old Frosty the Snowman song, if for no other reason than it was SO different from anything she's done before. I always felt that she was similar to a Dianne Reeves, who throws down with anything between a deep jazz tune to a gospel type song to straight R&B.
Bottom line: if you are not a jazz fan and are looking for the same ol' same ol' from 'Nita, chances are you may possibly think this album is not so great and very un-Christmassy (I don't think that's a word either)! Well, that's a shame, because in my humble opinion, 'Nita and the musicians throw down with some jazzy stylings that hopefully she dips into a little bit in the future. And you know what, even if she DOES stick to the same ol' same ol' for the rest of her career, I'll still probably get all of her stuff anyway, because she's 'Nita B. I'll be a lil disappointed, but I'll always support. So do YOUR part, 'Nita B. Nation, if you all call yourselves FANS, and get this good music!!"