Songs For a Christmas Night
Ed and Carol Nicodemi
2010 / Theo Jack Music
Review by Kathy Parsons
Songs For a Christmas Night by Ed and Carol Nicodemi is a collection of eleven jazzy Christmas vocals (Carol) with seven-string guitar accompaniment (Ed); three original songs are included in the mix. Carol Nicodemi is an accomplished vocalist with a clear, earthy voice that expresses sincerity with a total lack of pretense. Ed Nicodemi has recorded several piano albums and one classical guitar album as Edmund Paul Nicodemi, and the duo has recorded five albums together. One of the things I really like about this album is the intimacy and simplicity of the vocals and almost minimalistic guitar. That approach really highlights the beauty of the melodies, the poetry of the lyrics and the warmth of Carol’s voice. Although most of these songs are very familiar, they aren’t the songs that everyone sings at this time of year. They are of a more romantic nature and emphasize the emotions that the holiday season brings to the surface.
The album opens with “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year.” It’s one of the more upbeat tracks yet has a slightly bittersweet tinge - very nice! “Seems Like Old Times” was originally recorded in 1945 and was sung by Diane Keaton in the film Annie Hall. Carol makes it her own. “Just Like Christmastime” is the first of the original songs - Carol wrote the lyrics and Ed wrote the music. It is a love song to a lost love, reminiscing about the good times of the past. “Blue Monk / Santa Claus Is Coming To Town” is a lot of fun and very likely to bring a big smile. “I’ll Be Home For Christmas” is soulful, nostalgic and sad - a great arrangement! Ed wrote the hopeful yet lonely “Missing You At Christmas,” a beautiful ballad that overflows with love. “One December Moon” was also composed by the duo and recalls a marriage proposal on Christmas Eve years ago and how love has grown and deepened through the seasons. “Song For a Winter’s Night” by Gordon Lightfoot was a happy surprise. Lightfoot recorded two versions of this wonderful song in 1967 and 1975, but it is just as meaningful now. This song has more of a folk feeling, but fits right in with the other songs. The album closes with a sweet arrangement of “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas.”
Songs For a Christmas Night is a delightful collection of songs of the season and should bring warm, sentimental feelings to many listeners. It is available from Amazon, iTunes and CD Baby. Recommended!
November 28, 2017