Stories » The Blind Boys of Alabama w/Taj Mahal - Talkin? Christmas! / Toledo Free Press review

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The Blind Boys of Alabama w/Taj Mahal - Talkin? Christmas! / Toledo Free Press review

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In many years, when November arrives, it's time to brace for the onslaught of Christmas albums. Often, the selection is filled with the usual by-the-numbers versions of holiday standards that add nothing to the hundreds of holiday albums that have come before them. This year, we get a break. Sure, there are a few predictable releases, but just as many boast some inspired and original approaches to Christmas music. Here are some releases to add - and delete - from your holiday album shopping list:

Taj Mahal/The Blind Boys of Alabama, "Talkin' Christmas!"  (Sony Masterworks): This holiday summit between blues legend Mahal and the equally venerable gospel/soul vocal group, The Blind Boys of Alabama, is a rousing success. Featuring several fine original songs and inspired and unique versions of a few holiday favorites, "Talkin' Christmas!" rates as 2014's best holiday album.