20 December: Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass: Jingle Bells

Published December 20, 2012

In the Sixties, Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass were one of the most popular recording artists in the United States. They had six number one albums on Billboard's Top Pop Albums chart, and according to Joel Whitburn's book of said chart, they were number 17 in the list of most successful album acts in that decade. Pretty good going for an act that has since, perhaps, been reduced to a foot-note in modern popular music history.

One of their LP chart-toppers was the 1968 Christmas Album, which mainly consisted of familiar Holiday season songs, re-arranged by Alpert and his gang in their inimitable fashion. My track of choice here is 'Jingle Bells', which starts out innocently enough with a nice choral part before the fun starts at around 01:00. (By the way, check out the band's insane fiesta version of the normally mysterious and mittel-European-flavoured 'Third Man Theme' for an even more outré example of their "take no prisoners" approach).

Listen to 'Jingle Bells' here.

Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass: Christmas Album