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Carla Bley
Steve Swallow
The Partyka Brass Quintet
Carla's Christmas Carols

Carla Bley piano, celeste
Steve Swallow bass, chimes
Tobias Weidinger trumpet, flugelhorn, glockenspiel
Axel Schlosser trumpet, flugelhorn, chimes
Christine Chapman horn
Adrian Mears trombone
Ed Partyka bass trombone, tuba
O Tannenbaum
Away In A Manger
The Christmas Song
Ring Christmas Bells
God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen, part one
God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen, part two
It Came Upon A Midnight Clear
Hell's Bells
Jesus Maria
Jingle Bells
O Holy Night
Joy To The World

Recorded December 2008

Watt 35

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Christmas music has been an enthusiasm of Carla Bley’s for decades, and traditional and non-traditional seasonal pieces are here subjected to her offbeat wit and idiosyncratic arranging skills. Selections include “O Tannenbaum”, “Away In A Manger”, “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen”, “Jingle Bells”,. “O Holy Night” and “Joy To the World”, plus Mel Tormé’s The “Christmas Song” and a brace of Carla’s own pieces – “Jesus Maria” (first recorded by Jimmy Giuffre back in 1961), and, giving the devil his due, “Hell’s Bells”. “Carla’s Christmas Carols” was recorded in La Buissonne Studios in the South of France after a whirlwind tour of Europe at the end of 2008, and folds in two pieces from that tour (recorded live in Berlin). The pleasure that the musicians find in the material is unmistakable and, perhaps particularly after a glass of mulled wine, contagious.