Don’t you feel the urge as well to talk about trees, angels, presents and Santa Clause? While I had four pre-publication reviews on Flyctory.com int he week of 25th September 2020, it indeed left two Christmas albums for the weekend. One was the festive interpretation by Carrie Underwood, accompanied by Terri Clark’s holiday thoughts, which are simply called It’s Christmas … Cheers! Time for old beer or bubbly champagne for Santa Clause with Terri? Read my review!
Terri Clark – About The Artist
Terri Lynn Sauson was born on 5th August 1968 in Montreal, Canada. She however grew up in Alberta with three siblings in Alberta. Her grandparents were country music artists, who even opened for Johnny Cash. In her high school years, she more and more enjoyed country music and moved to Nashville after graduation in 1987. Traditional-style country music was not too well receipted during these days, but finally, she signed a record deal in 1994 and released her debut single Better Things to Do in 1995. The track was a huge success, peaking third in parallel in the US and Canadian Country Charts. The song was followed by When Boy Meets Girl, which confirmed these chart placements. Her third single If I Were You was her first Number One in the Canadian Country Charts. The songs were the backbone of her self-titled debut album, which peaked second in Canada (Country Charts). She co-wrote almost all tracks.
Until 2000, she released three more album, all in the Top 10 of the US and Canadian rankings. Her third album, How I Feel (1998) finally contained her first chart topper in the US, You’re Easy on the Eyes. Thereafter, the success in the album charts decreased slowly, especially in her home country. Her last album, Raising the Bar (2018), did not even record any charts success any more. Interestingly, in the single charts, she still did strong in Canada, while lacking chart placements in the US, including Top 10 singles like In My Next Life (2007) or One Drink Ago 2018 (with Dallas Smith). Her 2020 Christmas album is already Terri Clark’s twelfth studio album release.
Terri Clark – It’s Christmas … Cheers! – Track by Track
The ten track album lasts 31 minutes.
1. Winter Wonderland
To me, the first tunes of a Christmas album already tell a lot about the album: will be be rather sloe and thoughtful,very festive – but therefore maybe quite different to the music the artist is typically performing? Or is there a certain focus on doing the holiday season in the artist’s very own style? Terri Clark definitely goes for the second option already at Winter Wonderland, even though the orchestral support might be Santa’s add-on.
2. Jingle Bells
Jingle Bells has a lot of rhythm, a lot of speed – but also a lot of festive spirit. It still might feel too early to enjoy at the end of September, but I guess I will love to listen to it in mid-November, when I have a stronger urge to boost myself for Santa.
3. The Christmas Song (Chestnuts Roasting On An Open Fire)
After I felt Jingle Bells could be a perfect Christmas warm-up track, The Christmas Song (Chestnuts Roasting On An Open Fire) is definitely a track right underneath the tree. Very slow, but still a traditional country touch in there. Definitely a beauty.
4. I’ll Be Home For Christmas
I’ll Be Home For Christimas is not my favorite so far, but still it spreads the spirit – and it’s got a touch of the holidays as well as a flavor of Terri Clark. That’s what I really enjoy about listening to her album so far.
5. Cowboy Christmas (feat. Ricky Skaggs)
Clash of the legends under the Christmas tree? For the Cowboy Christmas, Terri Clark is joined by RIcky Skaggs. The song has a bit of a too soupy touch – but hey, it is Christmas season (at least regarding the album), so that should be fine.
6. Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow! (feat. Dierks Bentley)
Legends doing X-Mas, Part 2: this song released before the album is definitely one of the best tracks of the album. Terri Clark and Dierks Bentley… The last time we had that was with a band called the Hot Country Knights and the K was silent…
7. Silent Night (feat. Vince Gill)
… silent like the legendary Silent Night song. Interesting to compare this interpretation and to compare it to the one released by Carrie Underwood on her My Gift album: not just because Vince Gill (Legends, part III) is joining Clark and that just leads to a more family-alike atmosphere – Terri just does better in this duel.
8. Up On The Housetop
Up On The Housetop is more like a children’s Christmas song – and Terri Clark keeps that spirit of the track in her version. Its cheeky and fresh sound definitely adds a nice musical character to the album, so that I really enjoy listening.
9. Silver Bells (feat. The Oak Ridge Boys)
If I continued splitting songs between Santa Clause warm-up tracks and the soundtrack for the family evening underneath the Christmas tree, this beauty is definitely one for Christmas Eve / Christmas Day (depending on where you are celebrating). One of the most beautiful recordings of the album.
10. Away In A Manger (feat. Pam Tillis & Suzy Bogguss)
For the closing song of the album, Clark inviting two female country legends to sing Away In A Manger. Soft, gentle, Christmas feeling. Love it!
Terri Clark – It’s Christmas … Cheers! – Spotify
Here is the Spotify widget to Terri Clark’s 2020 Christmas album:
Terri Clark – It’s Christmas … Cheers! – My View
First of all, reviewing two Christmas albums in a row in September just is a bit of a mental pain and simply has to cause confusion. But if I look into It’s Christmas … Cheers!, Terri Clark did a wonderful job. After I struggled with the Carrie Underwood review, Clark really gave me a feeling of the holidays, even though people are still in the streets wearing a t-shirt. If you see the two albums as a small female country legends Christmas fight, Terri Clark won in the ring by a first round knock-out against Underwood for sure. If you are thinking about some Christmas songs with a country music touch the next months, you should definitely bear Terri in mind. Top Pick!