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Carpenters Christmas Albums

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Rick-An Ordinary Fool

Well-Known Member
I don't know but this just hit me tonight as I was looking at these 2 Christmas Albums.

On the back of An Old Fashioned Christmas album it says,


This album was released after Karen passed away. She never got to see these songs actually released and hear the public's reaction.

So Christmas Portrait was released on October 13 1978

Old Fashioned Christmas was released on October 26, 1984

Are these the right dates for the album?

Why do you think Richard didn't release another Christmas album before Karen died? Don't you think going from 1978 to 1983 was a long time? Of course I know they recorded The Old Fashioned Christmas before Karen passed away but why didn't they try to release it before 1983???

It just seems a shame that Karen never got to see the 2nd official Christmas Album released.

What are your thoughts on this?
Well, unfortunately for the most part, Christmas albums don't sell all that well. True, the Carpenters have had some of the greatest success with "Christmas Portrait" compared to most artists, but I think with both Karen and Richard's illnesses etc, there wasn't time for much. From 1978 up until the time Karen died, they had just enough time for rehabilitation, a new album, a wedding, and a couple of new tracks that landed on "Voice of The Heart". I do wonder what if any tracks are left besides the infamous Schubert version of "Ave Maria" to be included in any future releases.... Hmmmmm......
Also, remember Chris that "Old Fashioned Christmas" was a compilation of over-recorded material from "Christmas Portrait", with some fresh instrumental tracks that Richard cut after Karen passed. -Chris
This is likely a case of: had Karen not passed away, we might never have gotten the second Christmas album. Or, putting it another way, if Karen were still around, a second Christmas album would likely have been very different.

1983: Karen's untimely passing. Richard is left alone in this world, his partner, the biggest part of the success he's had, is gone. After his grief wore down a bit with the passage of time, his first task was to finish off an album that he and Karen had just begun working on. This task had to be painful - and I give him a lot of credit for perservering to deliver Voice Of The Heart in that same year.

1984: Only a year removed from the painful events of 1984, Richard must've asked himself: "Now what?" A logical choice was to delve into the extra Christmas recordings that he and Karen had done that DIDN'T fit onto Christmas Portrait. Though there wasn't quite enough for a full album, with a little orchestral padding, he was able to come up with enough to justify a second Christmas album, giving us An Old Fashioned Christmas.

I too hope that someday we'll get to hear the other version of "Ave Maria", if only because I prefer that Schubert tune to the Bach-Gunod melody.

...it it time to start Christmas shopping already?, online...
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