Our second holiday program opens with a mid-20th century classic:
‘Twas the Night Before Christmas
Fred Waring Orchestra
Christmas is a Coming
There have been many retellings of the Christmas story, but the 12-minute version Gene Autry recorded for CBS Records in 1961 remains my favorite. It is a no-nonsense version of the story of the Nativity, perfect for all youngsters regardless of religious orientation.
A Child at Christmas
“Pussycat’s Christmas” is based on a story by Margaret Wise Brown, author of “Goodnight Moon,” “Runaway Bunny,” and many other classic stories for children. The recording is narrated by Albert Grobe, music director for many years on New York’s classical music station WQXR. This is the only commercial record he ever made.
There may be Christmas records older than “Santa Claus Visits Children,” released by Victor in the early 1920s, but I haven’t heard them. Gilbert Girard stars as a Santa who recites nursery rhymes and does animal impression.
Santa Claus Visits the Children
Wreck the Halls
The Three Stooges
Ireene Wicker was the Story Lady on WOR radio in New York City during the 1940s. She is totally unique in her approach to any tale. The “Tale of Christmas Stocking” is the perfect vehicle for Ireene to showcase her many voices — yes, every voice you hear on this recording belongs Ms. Wicker.
Tale of a Christmas Stocking
We Wish You a Merry Christmas