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Christmas Portrait vs Christmas Portrait

Discussion in 'A Song For You: The Carpenters Forum' started by tomswift2002, Oct 18, 2018.

Which version do you think of as Christmas Portrait?

  1. Original 1978 song order

  2. 1984 Special Edition

  1. tomswift2002

    tomswift2002 Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    Ok, so which Christmas Portrait do you consider as THE Christmas Portrait when you think of CP?

    The Original (includes the 90-96 remixes) or the Special Edition?
  2. Song4uman

    Song4uman Well-Known Member

    Original all the way!!!!
  3. CraigGA

    CraigGA Well-Known Member

    I prefer the double set Christmas Collection with both original projects of Christmas Potrait and Old Fashioned Christmas. I like the original overture and Carol of the Bells of the first and the Jazz Christmas piano medley and Favorite Things of the latter for instrumentals and all the Karen of both.
    no1kandrfan likes this.
  4. Someday

    Someday Active Member

    The original, all the way. The SE just doesn't feel right; it's one thing boasting "29 hours of continuous music!", but it's overload. Too much of a good thing ...
  5. Rumbahbah

    Rumbahbah Well-Known Member

    The original 1978 tracklisting by a mile. The Special Edition feels like a 'cut and shut' in comparison, and whilst it includes more music and tracks from An Old Fashioned Christmas, by and large it leaves out most of the best performances from that album, so even the 'extra' music on it isn't all that.
  6. GaryAlan

    GaryAlan Well-Known Member

    1978 Portrait all the way. Truly a masterpiece.
    The later special edition is just that, Special.
  7. tomswift2002

    tomswift2002 Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    Which CD are you listening to? 29 hours? That’s way more than the SE claims at 70+ minutes.

    Anyway I have to go with the Special Edition. It was the first Portrait I heard and it’s the first one J think of.
    no1kandrfan likes this.
  8. Kyle Thomas

    Kyle Thomas Member

    I enjoy the special edition because I enjoy both the Carpenters Christmas albums, and it gives us a taste of both. But if given the choice, I'm going with the original. The overture isn't so long and choir-filled; it lets us get to Karen's voice faster. The album moves along faster, and I like the flow of it better. And there's no better finale than the Winter Wonderland medley leading into "Ave Maria."
    no1kandrfan likes this.
  9. Carpe diem

    Carpe diem Well-Known Member

    I'm in the original 1978 CP camp. I'm with you, Gary Alan, it's a masterpiece. Love the instrumental beginning segueing into Karen's vocals for the remainder of the album.
  10. Song4uman

    Song4uman Well-Known Member

    I grew up with the original. I new which song was next and what note it started on.

    I do listen to the Christmas Collection version in the car, but st gone it is the original vinyl.
  11. newvillefan

    newvillefan I Know My First Name Is Stephen

    I first discovered the Special Edition version but the long wait to hear Karen's voice drove me crazy...and still does. I discovered the original version soon after and that is the one I consider really special.
    Nelson R likes this.
  12. Carpe diem

    Carpe diem Well-Known Member

    Major Bummer...All this talk of CP got me inspired to throw on the vinyl. The turntable is not turning! I think the belt finally gave out:cry:, and all this with Christmas coming!!
  13. GaryAlan

    GaryAlan Well-Known Member

    All this talk has inspired me too ! A re-listening of sorts....
    First, the 1978 LP, then the Old-Fashioned Christmas LP,
    followed by the Special Edition cd,
    then, the West German cd,
    topping it all off with the Time-Life
    Christmas With The Carpenters....Disc B, itself, being divine, as it includes in one place:
    He Came Here For Me
    Santa Claus
    I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day
    Merry Christmas Darling
    Little Altar Boy
    Ave Maria

    Those six songs simply outstanding examples of Karen Carpenter vocals.
  14. tomswift2002

    tomswift2002 Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    I've got the Christmas Portrait: Special Edition playing right now (first Christmas album of the season) and it still amazes me just how cohesive this CD is. It's like being at a concert or symphony where the musicians just move from one song to the next, only pausing when it is needed.
  15. Jarred

    Jarred Active Member

    This has probably been brought up a few times before but why didn't Karen ever record a vocal for "O Holy Night"? Or did she?
  16. tomswift2002

    tomswift2002 Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    I don’t know. However “O Holy Night” was recorded for “The Carpenters At Christmas” and in the special Richard says the best way to do “O Holy Night” is with an orchestra and piano.

    (Check it out at about 28:55).

  17. ars nova

    ars nova Active Member

    O HOLY NIGHT and MERRY CHRISTMAS DARLING are my favorite Christmas songs; it was a big disappointment om the first spin of AOFC to hear it as an instrumental.
    Jamesj75 and newvillefan like this.
  18. tomswift2002

    tomswift2002 Well-Known Member Thread Starter

    Well on AOFC, “O Holy Night” is a remix of the TV special (besides remixing for stereo, Richard changed his piano).
  19. GaryAlan

    GaryAlan Well-Known Member

    I am pleased that the 1977 Special was entitled
    "The Carpenters at Christmas,"
    and not
    "Carpenters at Christmas."

    In any event, I really enjoy this special.
    It is pretty good as far as these shows go....
  20. Jarred

    Jarred Active Member

    But there shouldn't be a "THE"!
    newvillefan likes this.
  21. GaryAlan

    GaryAlan Well-Known Member

    ^^Interesting, the other Specials:
    The Carpenters Space Encounters (intro at 4:34).
    The Carpenters Christmas Portrait (intro at 5:08).
    The Carpenters, Music,Music,Music (intro at 3:45).
  22. Harry

    Harry Charter A&M Corner Member Moderator

    The whole idea of the duo's official name being just "Carpenters" was one of those late-60's/early '70s attempts at being somewhat "hip". Early on, Richard would make a big deal out the fact that the "the" was not appropriate, but it turned out to be a losing battle, and I believe that he and Karen were resigned to the fact that most people were simply always going to use the definite article in front of their name.

    Adding to the confusion is the fact that even if the group's name was properly "Carpenters", it was still correct in our English language to refer to the two people fronting the group as "the Carpenters", just as it would be correct to call your neighbors, "the Smiths" or "the Joneses" (that of course being their names!)

    So with that to deal with, and the TV specials coming later in their career, by then I think they'd just given in.
    Geographer and newvillefan like this.
  23. GaryAlan

    GaryAlan Well-Known Member

  24. Jarred

    Jarred Active Member

    That totally makes sense about why people would call them that when referring to them personally or even as a music group. It often sounds more like a natural way to talk about them even though I'm glad their official name is just "Carpenters" - it sounds more regal and stately, qualities reflected in Karen's voice and Richard's music.

    Still, if someone asked me who's your favorite musical group you could say "Carpenters" and not "the Carpenters", so there's definitely times when either one makes more sense.
    Geographer and John Adam like this.

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