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View Sample Pages : New Braunfels Herald Zeitung, December 19, 1996

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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - December 19, 1996, New Braunfels, Texas Herald-Zeitung g Thursday, December 19,1996 g 7 AttractionsWorld of Music: Christmas Offerings By John Godfrey Copley News Service It’s hard to put a new spin on the Christmas carols we’ve been listening to since our manger days, but that doesn’t seem to discourage anyone from trying. Whether it’s with synthesizers, vibraphones, mandolins or steel guitars, musicians everywhere are convinced we haven’t heard “Do You Hear What I Hear?” until we’ve heard their version. If you don’t get your fill of holiday music from department store tape loops, check out this year’s yuletide offerings - there’s a jingle for everyone on your shopping list. IRREVERENT, IRONIC, INTENTIONALLY IDIOTIC The shining star of the season is Juan Garcia Esquivel's “Merry Xmas From the Space-Age Bachelor Pad” (Bar/None), a collection of holiday favorites rendered in Esquivel’s inimitable cocktail party exuberance. Complete with oppressive xylophone fills and Space Age scats - “zu-zu-zoom!” - the 12 remastered carols on this album bring a George-Jetson-meets-Kris-Kringle aesthetic to the holidays. Geffen’s “Just Say Noel” is undoubtedly the hippest Christmas album of the season. Esquivel’s ovcr-the-top “Frosty the Snowman,’* and whimsically overwrought “White Christmas,” will cheer even the most jaded cynic underneath your mistletoe. lf your tribe collapses in front of the boob tube during holiday outings, you might try luring them away from the set by blasting “A Classic Cartoon Christmas’’ (Nick at Nite/550 Music). This cheery collection comprises 14 cartoon tunes, including “Welcome Christmas” (from “How the Grinch Stole Christmas”); “We’re a Couple of Misfits” (from “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer”); and “Put One Foot in Front of the Other” (from “Santa Claus is Coming to Town”). With performances by Fred Astaire, Burl Ives and Jimmy D'jrante, “A Classic Cartoon Christmas” won't scare Grandma away, either. Geffen’s “Just Say Noel” is undoubtedly the hippest Christmas album of the season. With new performances by Beck (“The Little Drum Machine Boy”), the Roots (“Millie Pulled a Pistol on Santa”), and Sonic Youth (“Santa Doesn’t Cop Out on Dope”), this alternative-rock compilation features strong work by some of Geffen’s best artists. This is one Christmas album your slacker teen-ager might actually appreciate receiving from Santa. The Bobs’ “Too Many Santas” (Rounder) is a noteworthy addition to the Christmas album wars, if only because it manages to avoid the standard yuletide fare. The irreverent all-vocal group delivers a collection of originals (“Yuleman vs. the Anti-Claus,” “Fifty Kilowatt Tree”) and lesser-known holiday songs with aplomb, panache and, unfortunately, too much self-congratulation. These guys are in love with themselves, and it shows. Of the countless Christmas compilations and reissues available this year, Schoolkids Records’ “Blame it on Christmas” stands alone. Probably because nobody else wanted to stand near it. This wacky assortment of low-budget spoofs includes the kind of material that works its way on to morning radio programs. Tacky, tasteless and pretty funny. As Led Zeppelin pointed out, the song remains the same. And so do the Christmas carols. There seem to be about 25 Christmas “classics” everybody covers every year, ad nauseam, minus originality. Sometimes, though, a new interpretation breathes life into a carol, even those wearing “do not resuscitate” bracelets. JAZZING IT UP “World Christmas” (Metro Blue) features an eclectic array of sparkling musicians, and is the album most likely to make Ebenezer Scrooge enjoy Christmas music again. Kicking off with Papa Wemba and Mino Cinelu’s Frenchified “Angels We Have Heard on High,” and closing with the Gipsy Kings’ rousing “Navidad,” “World Christmas” is heavy on African rhythms and free-flowing improvisation. The Caribbean Jazz Project’s 7:40 cover of “Santa Claus is Coming to Town” actually makes that dopey song sound elegant. Two jazz albums - “A Vibraphonic    Christmas” (Hollywood), and “Bending Towards the Light: A Jazz Nativity” (Milan Entertainment) -are completely different and thoroughly engrossing. The British acid jazz group Vibraphonic brings a funk-pop bounce to its covers of “Jingle Bells,” “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen” and the like - it’s like a shot of espresso dropped in your eggnog. “Bending Towards the Light,” on the other hand, is equal parts jazz, blues and gospel. Recorded live in New York City, it features Lionel Hampton, Tito Puente and many others as they build toward a sacramental performance of “Deck the Halls.” Yet another jazz affair, John Pizzarelli’s “Let’s Share Christmas” (RCA), is a time warp of sorts. His 1940s hipster take on “White Christmas” and “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” are an amalgam of Frank Sinatra, Mel Torme and his nouveau other self, Harry Connick Jr. Lush and evocative, this one is quite a treat. IN COUNTRY Three country Christmas recordings demonstrate a remarkable degree of disparity. Shenandoah’s “Shenandoah Christmas” (Capitol Nashville) is pure retro, pure tradition; but thanks to Marty Raybon’s gritty authenticity, it works. Conversely, Collin Raye’s “Collin Raye Christmas: The Gift” (Epic) features many of the same songs, but almost none of the simple beauty. Raye is country music’s answer to Michael Bolton - a talented blowhard    who chronically over-emotes. Also available: Alabama’s “Christmas Vol. 2” (RCA) digs a little deeper to find yuletide music, including a Gin HOOKS AV All .ABI I. WALNUT 6 629-6400 IH 35 and Walnut Ave. jerry Maguire D ILAS MS 101 Dalmations S Hon (hoi 4 354:50 IOO Sol I Sui 1:154:35 1 4:50 9 OOJ Ransom rn i#» ii ___J Mars Attacks |PG-13 Mon tho. 5:00 7:20 9:40 SottSual 12:40 2:50] 5:00 7:20 9.40 J r..... Space Jam (p51 L Mofriftwi 5:30 7:30 9.30 Se I Star 1:30 3:30 5:30 7:30 9:30 J ► Daylight IPG-ttl L. 4:50 7:15 9.35 Sol I Son T 1:00 4:50 7:15 9:35 -J BRAUNTEX 625-4411 290 W. San Antonio handful of originals. For an adventurous country Christmas, check out the virtuoso performances on Nashville Mandolin Ensemble’s “Gifts” (Columbia). With a touch of Celtic poetry and Nashville twang, this ensemble breaks with tradition and scores big with “Christmas in County Kerry,” “Dance of the Mirlitons” and others. OTHER VOICES Kitaro’s “Peace on Earth” (Domo Recordings) is everything we’ve come to expect from the Any Regular Entree $495 And Up With This Ad Offer Expires Jan. 15,1997 GUADALUPE In Historic Gruehe Invites Young and Old to Breakfast With Santa rn, Saturday, December 21, 8-10:30 am Benefiting New Braunfels Children's Shelter $6 Donation Cameras Welcome (210) 629-6121 A HeCuUuf Family Acmatic Cwt at 0fCygtebt toffee 9*.    <£#t.    18B9    _ ren>eb 'Stest) S*** rn Salwutiuf, Decencies 21 fool* 6;30(>nt until 1:30pm Breuitedt Coffee Haus Is proud to present a musical duo from KLRN’s hit kids TV show “Cat Paws.” Steve Sellers along with David Pipes will perform holiday tunes as well as favorites from the show. Don't be surprised if some “Cat Paws" friends sneak ini For a Spec ut I Musical Treat, local artist Becky LaLanne will play from H:OOpn\ until 10:00pm • 160 Hwy. 46 South @ IH 35 • 629-8033 • 'Due to the anticipated crowd, please arrive early as seating is limited. Bearded One - majestic, wellmeaning, tinny and cloying. Incorporating the youthful International Peace Choir helps add texture, but not enough. The Schola Cantorum of St. Peter’s “The Chant of Christmas Midnight” (Imaginary Road) brings a seasonal spin to the whole “chant” craze, lf you went for the Benedictine monks, you’ll probably go for this, too. But festive, it is not. Puerto Rican guitar whiz Yomo Toro brings salsa pizazz to December with his “Celebremos Navidad” (Ashe), a bilingual Christmas album designed to get you up and dancing. (c) Copley News Service 1996 AVAILABbB American Legion Post 179 • 4io w. Coll, New Braunfels jj    (Anois    from    the    library)    •    625-0179 The Faust Hotel VcrandaLounge presents: Local Piano Player Jack Russell Friday & Saturday 9 -12 p.m. .1 Happy H WednewL||§ 240 S. Seguin 625-7791 TODAY'S CROSSWORD PUZZLE ACROSS 1 Stuffs 6 Try 10 Highlands group 14 Fable writer 15 Mexican menu item 16 Ore deposit 17 View 18 Unlock 19 Elevator pioneer 20 Captain Kirks ship 22 Animal fat 23 Japanese wrestling 24 Common monkey 26 Trade 30 Crates 32 Baseball family name 33 Mop 35 In the lead 39 Brainier 41 Grow 43 Third planet from the sun 44 Singer Fitzgerald 46 Scrutinize 47 Actor Greene 49 Horses 51 Rigorous 54 Jai — 57 Delivery vehicle 63 Type of graph 56 •— for All Seasons" ery of c or officer 64 Roman poet 65 Plains dwelling 66 Actor Guinness 67 Warble 68 Heavy wood 69 Student s table 70 Boundary 71 Talks wildly DOWN 1 Grotto 2 Part of a harness 3 Helper abbr 4 Speck 5 Thin 6 Violent weather 7 — pudding 8 Fighter pilots 9 Goofs 10 Narrow squeak 11 Waterily 12 Good-bye in Montreal 13 Avian abodes 21 Bag 25 Gel well 26 Foundation 27 — mater 28 Bellow PREVIOUS PUZZLE SOLVED aHUS aUldUld Iii HI WU HI Iii W14 ffiUDHB III (4 (ltd HHfflU L4 111*] 14 Iii UU 114(4 ai4I4ffil4l4W (-1I4UUI4I4 (9(411(4 Will Will UfflBUU WL»JUW(7JHlill4 aaa ai4MLijiii aiu:ii4i7i □amra u iii ii bi i ^ mu y 14 HGIEUB ll kl 14 HI (4 IJ U Iii saBQsaaM aauun awrau aui4u QLGuaaa Muumuus □amu U14 Lil 1114 I?) MU 14 MBWM til 14 (4 WH MU (J IU aaa aaaau aauu Le IO 16 96 © 1996 Unrt.d Feature Sytxfccat* 29 Sweater style 31 Adam s son 34 Songbird 36 Toledo s lake 37 Ripened 38 Morning moistures 40 Explorer Heyerdahl 42 Twangy 45 Slanting 48 Sleep 50 Giggle 51 Type of bar 52 Boxer Griffith 53 Weather indicators 55 Shelf 58 Eager 59 McEntire of country music 60 “— my word!" 61 Dollar fraction 62 Items on a chain 1 5 r~ 4 I 6 7 5™ I rcr TT" 15 15 14 )5 16 17 16 rn 56 2i 52 23 ■ ' ■ 30 31 P mm 32 ■ 53 ■ 55 56 43 ■ 44 P 46 warn „ 48 49 ■ 54 * I 58 65 [ L 66 I 66 I fc_ STUMPED? Call for Answers • Touch too* o» Rotary Phone* • 95c poi minute 1-900-454-3535 ext code 500 ;