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Jazz for the Holiday Season, from WBGO

With the holiday season comes the music for spending time with holly and mistletoe — and perhaps too many visits to the local mall. Every year, new interpretations of holiday classics come pouring in.

Truth be told, we really don't need a new tempo on "O, Tannenbaum," and the nights are holy enough, thank you. That said, here are some great suggestions for eggnog and yule logs.

"The Christmas Song"

Even if you hate chestnuts, this is a must for the season.

"Let It Snow"

Pianist Oliver Jones hails from Canada, and you can tell he's seen the Oscar Peterson eclipse many times. Once music director for the Montreal Jubilation Choir, he has a great soulful style. Santa has never come to town like this.

"Jingle Bells" (Count Basie)

Chet Baker's "Winter Wonderland." Dexter Gordon wishing you a Merry Christmas. Even John Scofield getting seasonal with the 'Chipmunks' theme. And of course, the Basie band.

"Please Come Home for Christmas" (Papa Don Vappie's New Orleans Jazz Band)

Deck the halls with soul, jazz and blues classics done the Big Easy way. Heritage Hall Jazz Band, Ellis Marsalis, John Boutte and New Birth Brass Band are all featured here.

"White Christmas" (Big Maybelle)

Not your typical holiday fare here. Little Esther with Johnny Otis, The Ravens, Big Maybelle, Charlie Parker's "White Christmas" and Slam Stewart letting you in on "Santa's Secret" are some of the reasons why.

Copyright 2007 WBGO

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