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Album Review: A Valentine Christmas
Joyce Valentine
Cover image of the album A Valentine Christmas by Joyce Valentine
A Valentine Christmas
Joyce Valentine
1999 / Joyce Valentine
56 minutes
Review by Kathy Parsons
There are a lot of good to excellent pianists out there, but when a REALLY outstanding one comes along, what a difference it makes! Joyce Valentine is such a pianist. With incredible chops and some wonderful ideas for bringing new life to Christmas music, A Valentine Christmas is a truly exceptional holiday CD. The pieces were chosen from some of Valentine’s personal favorites as well as from her mother’s collection of international Christmas music. The familiar pieces keep the CD warm and friendly, and the more obscure ones add a freshness not found on many holiday CDs. Valentine’s style is classical without being remote or aloof, and the arrangements are full, powerful, and emotional. The pieces are the more “serious” songs of the season - no Santa or “Jingle Bells” - and the mood is darkly gorgeous. George Winston’s influence can be heard in her arrangement of “Carol of the Bells”, but Valentine’s style is uniquely her own. All of the songs are outstanding arrangements, so it is difficult to pick any favorites - they’re all really good! The familiar carols include “Good King Wenceslas”, “O Come O Come, Emmanuel”, “Silent Night”, “God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen”, “I Saw Three Ships”, and “Angels We Have Heard on High”. Some of the songs stand alone and other are incorporated into medleys. This is a Christmas CD sure to highlight your holidays! Very highly recommended!
December 1, 1999
This review has been tagged as:
Holiday Albums