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James Taylor at Christmas Review

by Sherrill Fulghum

This son of a doctor and Medical School Dean changed the way we view the singer/songwriter today. While still a teen James Taylor formed a band and began forging a career in music. Since he released his first solo album in 1968 Taylor has sold over 40 million albums; been awarded 40 gold, platinum, and multi-platinum records and one diamond award for selling 10 million copies of a single album; won five Grammys; was given the Billboard Century Award in 1998; inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Songwriters Hall of Fame; and was the 2006 MusiCARES Person of the Year.

Taylor's newest offering is a collection of 12 holiday songs. The album itself is a bit of departure from the usual pop music familiar to fans of Taylor. James Taylor at Christmas is more of an album of jazz standard, blues, and spiritual style songs. The album is a mix of very familiar commercial tunes and some not so popular songs.

While the album is a nice offering of songs for the season; Taylor shows that good thing come to those who wait and he saves the best for last. "Who Comes This Night" and "In the Bleak Midwinter" are two absolutely beautiful songs that will leave you wanting more. The final song is "Auld Lang Syne" a Celtic tune sung at the changing of the year. Taylor performs this traditional Celtic tune in its entirety and in a beautiful Celtic rock fashion.

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