I Wanna Be Santa Claus

I Wanna Be Santa Claus

The Beatles never made an official Christmas album, though in 1970 their fan club members did receive The Beatles Christmas Album, a compilation of the special singles the group had released through the fan club each year from 1963 through 1969. It was an idea surprisingly never capitalized on until the 1999 release of Ringo Starr’s I Wanna Be Santa Claus. Ringo had found his latest consistent collaborator in producer/musician Mark Hudson, and together they wrote several originals featured here. The most intriguing track is “Christmas Time (Is Here Again),” the one “song” The Beatles had written and performed on their 1967 fan club record; it's rerecorded here by Starr with Aerosmith’s Joe Perry playing the guitar solo. The Eagles’ Timothy D. Schmit provides backing vocals on the title track, “The Little Drummer Boy,” and Irving Berlin’s “White Christmas.” But largely the draw here is the updated “Beatles” sound that isn’t far removed from Jeff Lynne’s modern work with the group. The album wasn't a commercial hit, but it wasn't due to any fault of the artistry within. The times they had a-changed.

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