Christmas Song Nr. 5: Christmas Song by Roger Whittaker

I first heard of Roger Whittaker when I saw him on a Danish talk show where he displayed his various talents. As a youth, I must have been about 16, just discovering the ins and outs of music construction I none the less understood that this older man had a perfect voice. Since that day Whittaker has come in and out of my life and during the holiday season he has a given place on the stereo; and especially his wonderful Christmas Song,

Roger Whittaker was born in 1936 to British parents in Nairobi, Kenya where he also did his military service. After a variety of career alternatives he was signed to a record deal and embarked on a long musical profession. Singing a fairly harmless version of folk music Whittaker displayed some very distinct traits that have cemented his legacy in the annals of music; His baritone voice with a near perfect pitch, his ability to whistle, his guitar playing and his song writing skills. He used to have a radio show where listeners would send in verse that he would set to music. Some of his biggest hits would originate from that show. Today he mostly releases covers and collections, several of them in German since he has retained a great following among the Huns.

It’s not surprising that a singer like Whittaker would release a Christmas album and , as a matter of fact, he has released several. His first release, and probably the most unknown one, is a collection of contemporary tunes with some classics mixed in. The Christmas Song is itself a tribute to the songs of Christmas. A ballad about how the entire Christmas spirit and the goodwill shared among men is expressed in carols like God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen and so forth. It’s about resting by the fire on Christmas Eve with a glass of eggnog and how the atmosphere is captured through the carols sung in harmony.

Roger Whittaker’s Christmas Album deserves a place on any Christmas List due to its alternative tunes that would not offend anyone,  but due to its celebration of Christmas songs in general Christmas Song is the number five pick.

-Andrew Tobias


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