Idol Chatter

AmyGrantPicforIdolchatter.jpgDiscussing her own recent Christmas compilation with Amy Grant the other day, I asked the Christian rock diva about her favorite Christmas albums of all time. The classic Nat King Cole disc is a given, and we’re going to give her a pass on Mannheim Steamroller, which Grant admitted she hadn’t listened to in years. Here’s her top six:

1. Ray Charles, “The Spirit of Christmas The R&B master at the height of his powers in the mid-80s sings mostly secular wintry chestnuts.
2. Vince Guaraldi, “A Charlie Brown Christmas The soundtrack of the classic holiday special doesn’t spare the religious part of the season, with happy, jazzy versions of “What Child Is This? and “Hark, the Herald Angels Sing.”
3. Natalie Cole, “Holly & Ivy The master’s daughter takes a turn with a quietly hip set of classics.
4. Sarah McLachlan, “Wintersong This album is full of surprises, beginning with John Lennon’s “Happy Xmas (War Is Over)” and ending with a duet with Diana Krall–and of course lots of beautiful singing.
5. Mindy Smith, “My Holiday The Nashville up-and-comer combines country and cool in this collection from last year.
6. George Winston, “December The album that made Windham Hill synonymous with Yuletide.

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