Monday, November 12, 2007

Fred Waring's The Meaning of Christmas

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Yes, it's my first album sharity, and it's a doozy.

Fred Waring came up with a non-rock 'n' roll concept album for Christmas. (Psst: it is not a secular album, for all of you who come here for my atheistic snottiness, but it is a fantastic album.) There are undoubtedly many songs here that most of you have never heard. And that's something. The style is, if you aren't aware of Fred Waring's sound in the mid sixties, what they used to call Light Classical. Not "light classical" in the sense of digital music services today who think light classical means Handel and Mozart. Who are they, anyhow? Light Classical is Andre Kostelanetz. 101 Strings, before they tried to go psychedelic. Mantovani (mostly). Rich orchestration, traditional choral arrangements, and heavy on the fantasia. Want a short taste?

Link expired-check comments for info about how to buy album.
BTW, on this album, you get to hear ol' Fred himself, explaining what Christmas means. What a treat!


Christmas Magic
A Musical Christmas Card
Christmas Tree
Carol of the Bells
Snow, Snow, Beautiful Snow
The Sleigh
The Echo Carol
Kentucky Wassail
Medley: Toyland/March of the Toys/Toyland
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
'Twas the Night Before Christmas
The Song of Christmas

...and, for those of you who desire a pure musical, lying-on-the-carpet -in-front-of-the-Magnovox-Hi-Fi-console experience, with no fadeouts:

Side 1 ( the first twelve songs)

Fred Waring and his Pennsylvanians: The Meaning of Christmas zipfile on YouSendIt
(Go ahead and request a re-post if you missed it.)

PS: If anyone has this one before I can dig the cover out of storage, slip me the liner notes, if you can.


Ernie said...

Here's the cover you were missing. I went ahead and scanned front and back while I was at it...


wildfiresign said...

I am looking for all the Fred Waring Christmas songs, in particular, Rudolph (crazy reindeer), Santa Claus is Coming to Town & Christmas Magic.. can anyone help? I can't find these online anywhere... can the zip file be reposted? Thanks :)

wildfiresign said...

I am looking for all the Fred Waring Christmas songs, in particular, Rudolph (crazy reindeer), Santa Claus is Coming to Town & Christmas Magic.. can anyone help? I can't find these online anywhere... can the zip file be reposted? Thanks

Hellbound Alleee said...

I'm sorry I forgot to mention this one--it's on a cd, so I had to remove the link. If you look on my Mondo Diablo blog, you might find more info.

Kathie said...

Can you please repost THe Meaning of Christmas??/ Many thanks! Kathie

noncanadianguy said...

FYI, the entire contents of this album can be found on the 2-CD set "Christmas Magic", available here:

flutist said...

This was the album that I always remember from childhood Christmases, which never started until my brothers came home from college (around Dec. 21). "Snow, Snow" was the perfect accompaniment for heading up to Newark Airport to pick them up. Thanks for not being cynical about this one...

Laura said...

Hellobound Allee,

Please please please repost the Fred Waring "the Meaning of Christmas" alubum back on YouSendIt, I am desperate for it.


Unknown said...

this is my favorite xmas album and has been for 50 years. i have the album and it is indeed 50 years old. the memories are so precious. what i am looking for is do they have a cd of the album out. thank you

Ron said...


After searching on Internet and a lot of googling of course I came to the conclusion that this album or cd is out of print.

So, please for the 2008 holiday's. It'l makes my and our Christmas so much better.

Thanks in advance, Ron

Joe said...

I made this graphic from the original record a while back. It combines the labels from both sides. I used it as a CD label for when I converted the record to CD. Here's the JPG: Fred Waring-Meaning of Christmas CD.jpg

And the 2 Disc set (Fred Waring - Christmas Magic) can currently be found here at YesterVideo & Music.

This blog confirms disc 2 is the Meaning of Christmas. (Sorry, I haven't bought it myself yet so I can't confirm. I hope to follow up.)

Unknown said...

Anyway you can repost, since the link is dead? Many thanks

Joe said...

Disc 2 of Fred Waring Christmas Magic is indeed Fred Waring's The Meaning of Christmas. Matches the record perfectly!

Per my earlier post, looks like YesterVideo is either currently down or out of business.

Where can I post the image where it won't expire?

Vitaly said...

Hallo, friends. I like Fred Waring and his christmas recordings, but can anyone help me with his "Fred Waring and His Pennsylvanians in Hi-Fi" album. Thanks in advance.

felixthestoryteller said...

I read where someone said there was a CD of "The Meaning of Christmas." I have the album but would love to have a CD. I'm on the recording made in NYC in 1961.

Thank You,

Felix Mayerhofer

Joe said...

It appears as though it is currently available through iTunes for $7.99:

You were in the choir? That's amazing! Can you share a little bit about the recording such as where it was performed and recorded, how many people were in the choir and orchestra, and any other behind-the-scenes points or interest? Anything you can share would add so much to our Christmas tradition of listening to "The Song of Christmas" each Christmas Eve.

Joe said...

It's also available on Amazon MP3

Here is a link to the original album art:

(This link is to my dropbox account which should remain available permanently unless dropbox goes out of business.)