The Weavers – We Wish You A Merry Christmas (1952)

FrontCover1from folk to pop to gospel. The quartet sounds as though they’re having the time of their lives in this relaxed setting, perhaps knowing that the release of this beguiling collection of holiday music could only have confused and confounded the Red-baiters working against them. The singing is exuberant yet mostly elegant (especially Ronnie Gilbert’s vocalizing throughout), except on the folksy “It’s Almost Day” (which couldn’t and shouldn’t be performed elegantly), and the material is performed with warmth and dignity. The accompaniment is nicely restrained, with no more than a few horn flourishes on “One for the Little Bitty Baby.” Apparently, the group had wanted to include a couple of songs in Hebrew, but the record label rejected the idea, fearful in that less-ecumenical age that the presence of Jewish songs would offend some listeners. (by Bruce Eder)

Ronnie Gilbert (vocals)
Lee Hays (guitar, vocals)
Fred Hellerman (guitar, bass, vocals)
Pete Seeger (mandolin, guitar, vocals)

01. We Wish You A Merry Christmas (Traditional) 2.36
02. One for The Little Bitty Baby (Brand/Campbell) 3.29
03. The Seven Blessings Of Mary (Traditional) 2.54
04. Twelve Days Of Christmas (Traditional) 2.23
05. Go Tell It On The Mountain (Traditional) 2.32
06. Poor Little Jesus (Campbell/Gilbert/Hays/Hellerman/Seeger) 2.10
07. Burgundian Carol (Brand/Campbell) 2.11
08. God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen (Traditional) 1.21
09. Lulloo Lullay (Campbell) 2.07
10. It’s Almost Day (Ledbetter) 1.29