22/10/2019 6:19 pm  #26

Re: Bing and London Symphony Orchestra at Christmas

That was great hearing those brief samples from the whole CD.  Interesting there are 2 versions of White Christmas but both sound like they source the same '42 Bing record, I do prefer the 2nd version (the last cut on the CD) where they let Bing solo thru it.  The first version on the CD he's accompanied by a very loud singing group.  Fire that loud chorus and re-do it solo with Bing's '55 vocals.   For good news they seem to have used the vocal from one of Bing's '50's radio recordings for the "Christmas Song" re-vamp.  Least I think it's from the '50's, maybe a '60's recording for TV??   The sound quality of Bing's voice is so much better than the original muffled Decca recording, also 2 different versions of this song too both using the excellent vocal sound from his radio/TV? '50's/'60's recordings!   But from the far too brief sample of Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas (vocal must be from the Capital recording) I couldn't tell the difference between the original Capital and this supposed re-do.  But it was very brief so I'm sure the differences must show up later. 

As far as that's concerned though, why bother re-doing the Capital Christmas recordings at all?   The sound quality on those originals was already superb and in beautiful stereo too on the originals, so why try to improve perfection?    But those mono elderly Decca Christmas records are greatly improved with the beautiful stereo orchestra. 


23/10/2019 3:32 am  #27

Re: Bing and London Symphony Orchestra at Christmas

You know, the more I've thought about it the more I suspect that NONE of these Bing vocals are from Decca recordings.   That they may all be recordings Bing did for radio broadcasts in the '50's and recordings he made for TV broadcasts in the '60's (recordings he would then mouth to pretending to be singing live for the TV show).   Even what we thought was the '42 Decca recording of White Christmas may actually be from an early radio recording from the same early '40's time period. 

Knowing how the Bing  people of today don't like to involve Decca as sources for any of their Bing CD releases instead prefer using radio and TV recordings for their CD releases of 10 or more years ago (yes, it's been that long since the Bing company has done anything).   Anything to avoid sharing profits with Decca.   This would explain why "Christmas Song" and other songs on the new CD have such a better audio quality than the original Decca records, they're all later '50's and '60's recordings Bing made for radio and TV.  

This is my new and probably real explanation of what the real sources for Bing's vocals are on this new Christmas CD.   By the way, I'm not complaining, any recording of Bing's voice which is an improvement over the older Decca '40's records is a good thing.   Luckily for all of us Bing re-recorded practically all of his Christmas songs for radio and TV broadcasts, if not for these we would have to rely on the old Decca records for sources. 


23/10/2019 11:17 am  #28

Re: Bing and London Symphony Orchestra at Christmas

Hi Archiefit,
First of all, thanks for your interesting comments.
It was my belief that the juridical dispute between Bing Crosby Enterprises and Decca/Universal was solved a number of years ago. I note that at least on the more recent releases of BCE several Decca recordings are included. If you believe BCE hasn't released anything Bing in the past ten years, I urge you to check your retailers, because this is not the case. I refer for instance  to New Tricks and Among your Souvenirs, released in 2017. And then there's the BCE/Time Life set of Bing's TV specials on DVD of last year. Whether one likes that last release or not, it ìs a release. ;-)
I find it difficult to ascertain from the sound excerpts that are available now whether or not Bing's voice originates from Decca recordings or not. In the case of White Christmas we have the song as a complete preview and I compared the recordings. Although there is some tampering with Bing's voice track, I am quite certain it is the Decca recording.

And I must say many of the sound excerpts sound quite like the familiar Decca recordings to my ears. Anyway, this new album is actually released on the Decca label, so why do you think they would not use their own back catalogue in favour of radio tracks for which they probably should pay copyrights to the owners of those recordings?
Reading your remarks on Bing's version of The Christmas Song, I gave the recording another listen. I never noted a difference in sound quality between this recording and any of his other recordings of the period. Can it be it's your copy that has a lesser sound quality? I am certain any better sound quality of the voice tracks on the new album is due to the continuing advancement of digital technology.   
Anyway, it was interesting to read your views and I hope you don't mind me disagreeing with some things you wrote.


23/10/2019 10:52 pm  #29

Re: Bing and London Symphony Orchestra at Christmas

Oooh, I didn't know this new CD was going to be put out by Decca, I thought it was another BCE release.   You know, I'm not sure of my theory (not Decca, but radio recordings) it's just what I was beginning to think the more I heard these brief excerpts and I thought knowing how BCE would not involve Decca before I thought this could very well be radio vocals.   But if this is a Decca release, that kind of changes my thinking. 

As for Christmas Song, I have this same Decca version on several different Decca CDs and all of them have a muffled quality esp. when compared to the other Bing Decca Christmas recordings, BIng's voice is clear on those but on all the Decca versions of Christmas Song it's muffled.   Maybe I just happen to be plopping on ear muffs everytime that  song plays.   But I notice the vast improvement of Bing's audio quality on his '50's radio recordings of the same song.  Nowadays I prefer his radio recording of Christmas Song (from the CDs put out by BCE in the semi-recent past, by the way) than the Decca version. 

As for New Tricks, I never bought the BCE release because I hated the phony cover they used rather than the original hound cover (besides I already had a previously commercial release of this CD) and Among My Souvenirs I never bought either, I wasn't impressed with the song lineup, very oddball.   Suppose though I should get it just to be a completest, but as of yet I haven't felt the need or mad desire.

As for a disagreement I don't mind at all, we're all entitled to our opinions.   And when you pointed out this new CD is on the Decca label, I learned something.   So I's happy.


26/10/2019 12:27 am  #30

Re: Bing and London Symphony Orchestra at Christmas

Richard Baker wrote:

jeremyrose wrote:

Presumably there’s some BCE involvement in the release..?

Involvement of the family, obviously, but formal involvement of  the business organisation  BCE is not obvious - no claims of it and no obvious logos displayed. However Bing Crosby.com are promoting it - see 


I'm sure the album will be fun to play.  And it'll be a novelty to hear Bing sing xmas songs with 21st century recording technology in the orchestra that backs him up.
But nothing can touch Bing's early xmas recordings, such as him doing Hark The Herald Angels Sing and many others.


28/10/2019 6:33 am  #31

Re: Bing and London Symphony Orchestra at Christmas

I think the promotional video is well done and I enjoyed the .new' version of 'White Christmas'. Bing's restrained rendition of 'White Christmas' backed by the choir from A CHRISTMAS SING is commendable.


15/11/2019 2:57 pm  #32

Re: Bing and London Symphony Orchestra at Christmas

Since today, complete versions of several of the songs on the CD are available on YouTube: White Christmas (3 versions), Let it snow, It's beginning to look a lot like christmas, and Winter wonderland.

You can listen and see them here:

Three versions of White Christmas, you might think? There are only two on the CD ... But check out the third version here, if you like:
I like it very much!

Last edited by frans (15/11/2019 2:57 pm)


26/11/2019 2:55 pm  #33

Re: Bing and London Symphony Orchestra at Christmas

Interestingly, I see in the UK there is a listing for a vinyl version of this new Christmas release...however I have not seen the vinyl listed anywhere in North America. Has anyone seen a vinyl listing here in North America for this release? I thought there was only a CD or digital release of this new album.



27/11/2019 3:30 pm  #34

Re: Bing and London Symphony Orchestra at Christmas

02:441/10/1951  It's Beginning To Look Like Christmas 02:4017/11/1952  Sleigh Ride 02:095/10/1962  Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow! 02:5929/5/1942  White Christmas 02:341/10/1943  I'll Be Home For Christmas 02:3327/9/1943  Jingle Bells 02:525/10/1962  Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas 02:4621/10/1963  Do You Hear What I Hear? 02:5219/3/1947  The Christmas Song 02:3611/9/1977  The Little Drummer Boy / Peace On Earth 03:2110/5/1949  The Twelve Days Of Christmas 02:275/10/1962  Winter Wonderland 02:5219/3/1947  The Christmas Song 03:0119/3/1947  White Christmas 

I think, the list above (from the great website Jazzdiscography) ist not correct.

For the new "Let It Snow" they used the 1946-version.

And "Sleigh Bells" seems to be a different version than the usual one vom Nov. 17th, 1952.

Last edited by Freddy (27/11/2019 3:33 pm)


27/11/2019 10:29 pm  #35

Re: Bing and London Symphony Orchestra at Christmas

Holy Mackerel, how can you trust this list of original recording dates when the most obvious glaring inaccuracy shows that that song I dislike most Drummer Boy/Pieces On Oith was supposedly from 1949!!!   Uh, I don't think Bing & Bowie got together in 1949.  Yuh think?


28/11/2019 7:39 am  #36

Re: Bing and London Symphony Orchestra at Christmas

Archiefit, I think that the dates quoted are meant to precede the song titles, not as you have concluded, follow them.

     Thread Starter

28/11/2019 8:35 am  #37

Re: Bing and London Symphony Orchestra at Christmas

The entry on jazzdiscography has now been updated following receipt of the CD.


30/11/2019 8:16 am  #38

Re: Bing and London Symphony Orchestra at Christmas

     Thread Starter

30/11/2019 8:47 am  #39

Re: Bing and London Symphony Orchestra at Christmas

That’s amazing..! Thank you, Richard. What a great start to a frosty Saturday here in Cambridgeshire!


30/11/2019 6:20 pm  #40

Re: Bing and London Symphony Orchestra at Christmas

Really good news - or in the Christmas spirit - jolly good news and now we have a new wave of  Bing fans.
One can’t help thinking of how the family delayed keeping Bing in the eyes and ears of a generation or two - not like the Sinatra family keeping Frank up there although his star may now be behind the clouds but in the stores there appears to be more Sinatra CD’s than there are of Bing.
Jeremy, I head to Australia onMonday, so I might just pass a duty free shop, to boot. Although the ‘duty free’ shops in the US still seem to collect a tax, not like the UK or Australia.


02/12/2019 7:33 am  #41

Re: Bing and London Symphony Orchestra at Christmas


02/12/2019 8:12 am  #42

Re: Bing and London Symphony Orchestra at Christmas

A  very good review. One paragraph leapt out at me -  

"My one complaint about Bing At Christmas is the inclusion of modern guest artists. I get why the likes of The Puppini Sisters, The Tenors and Pentatonix are included here but the album really didn’t need them. Bing on his own is enough to pull people in and when you add The London Symphony Orchestra, everything after is just an unnecessary distraction. There’s nothing wrong with any of those songs but you can’t beat Bing singing on his own really can you?"

I agree 110%

     Thread Starter

02/12/2019 3:42 pm  #43

Re: Bing and London Symphony Orchestra at Christmas

Just been on a weekly visit to my local supermarket. Like many others, at one time it used to have a goodly display of CDs, but more recently it has been restricting  the space to three racks no more than three feet wide with a vertical "featured" display above. This limits them to showing something like the top ten sellers with most of the remaining stock consisting of earlier top tens that have not yet sold. Most times I hardly recognise the names of the artists shown.  But today I had a surprise. Bing was sitting in pride of place in the centre of the feature. What's he doing there? Oh, wait a minute, he IS in the top ten!

What's more, whilst I paused to take in the sight, a shopper actually took a copy and popped it in her trolley.


     Thread Starter

02/12/2019 7:41 pm  #44

Re: Bing and London Symphony Orchestra at Christmas

I have just watched an amazing plug for the new album on BBC 1’s prime-time evening magazine programme, “The One Show”. Mary-Frances was interviewed and although they didn’t play anything from the album, the cover was prominently displayed and there was a definite push from all concerned to get “White Christmas” to the number 1 spot in the charts for Christmas.
I NEVER watch “The One Show” but - luckily - my mother ‘phoned me to let me know! I got to it just in time and even managed to press the “record” button!

Did anyone know about this in advance?

How wonderful it would be if Bing were to top the charts more than 40 years after his passing...

Last edited by jeremyrose (02/12/2019 7:41 pm)


02/12/2019 8:53 pm  #45

Re: Bing and London Symphony Orchestra at Christmas

Like you, Jeremy, I NEVER watch The One Show! Just like you, I received a telephone call 15 mins before the programme started from BING magazine editor Malcolm Macfarlane (who obviously knew in advance) to give me the ‘heads up’.

There was a nice contribution from Frank Skinner, too, regarding Bing’s comedy skills.

I have to say, I’m really enjoying the new album. I’m sure it will help open the door to Bing’s output for a lot of new listeners...


02/12/2019 11:35 pm  #46

Re: Bing and London Symphony Orchestra at Christmas

For those in the UK The One Show is of course available on the BBC's catch up service.
The piece with Mary Crosby starts about 16 minutes in and although the topic appears to end at about 21 minutes they return to it later when they also show a snip of the shooting of "JR" in "Dallas"!. There is also a very brief mention of Bing and White Christmas at 12 minutes.
The very opening of the show has a very faint background of Bing's singing voice when they are announcing the later appearance of Mary.


     Thread Starter

03/12/2019 3:43 am  #47

Re: Bing and London Symphony Orchestra at Christmas

I’m at Vancouver airport awaiting my flight to Sydney and can’t hook up as only for the UK.


03/12/2019 6:46 am  #48

Re: Bing and London Symphony Orchestra at Christmas

Well, no CD’s available in Vancouver airport.
Looking at the ‘duty free’ shops, I think some items are cheaper on the high street.


03/12/2019 7:34 am  #49

Re: Bing and London Symphony Orchestra at Christmas

I found about Mary Crosby being on The One Show about an hour before it was broadcast when I was checking the BBC site for Bing songs used in the last 7 days. Typically my email system was down so I couldn't bang out an email to ICC members but I phoned Jason as I guessed he might want to record it for showing at his Bing meeting on December 14. By the way, Mary will also be heard on the Good Morning Sunday show on Radio 2 on Dec. 22.

Last edited by Malcolm Macfarlane (03/12/2019 7:35 am)


04/12/2019 5:29 pm  #50

Re: Bing and London Symphony Orchestra at Christmas

Yet another bit of exposure on BBC TV. This time on the Breakfast Show at 9:05 today, 4th December.

Mary Crosby interviewed with clips of Bing in a variety of Christmas shows with Fred Astaire, the family and David Bowie.  

Mary seems to be working strenuously at present and has been popping up all over the place on UK radio and TV.

UK residents can pick up on the show here for 29 days. The piece is just over 3 hours in and takes up most of the tail end of the show.

And we get that clip of the shooting of JR again. 

Later correction. I'm sorry - most BBC programmes are available for a total of 30 days. This one apparently only for 24 hours, so it expires at 9:15 on 5 December. 


Last edited by Richard Baker (05/12/2019 7:28 am)

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