The Caliban Quartet of Bassoonists | Caliban Does Christmas

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Jazz: Jazz Vocals Classical: Contemporary Moods: Mood: Christmas
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Caliban Does Christmas

by The Caliban Quartet of Bassoonists

Happy mixture of vocal and instrumental Christmas music: some jazz, some comedy, some classics, lots of bassoons, lots of fun.
Genre: Jazz: Jazz Vocals
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Sleigh Ride
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2:56 $0.99
2. Santa Claus is Coming to Town
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3:14 $0.99
3. I Saw Three Ships
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3:28 $0.99
4. A Nutcracker Digest
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4:57 $0.99
5. A Christmas Carol
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2:00 $0.99
6. Siberian Sleighride
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2:49 $0.99
7. What Are You Doing New Year's Eve?
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4:18 $0.99
8. Secret Santa
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2:43 $0.99
9. The 12 Days of Christmas
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4:43 $0.99
10. The 12 Days After Christmas
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3:19 $0.99
11. Santa Baby
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3:09 $0.99
12. The Secret of Christmas
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4:20 $0.99
13. Marie-Noël
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3:05 $0.99
14. Too Fat for the Chimney
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2:19 $0.99
15. Theme from Hockey Night in Canada
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1:58 $0.99
16. The Same Christmas Cake
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3:05 $0.99
17. Megruli Alilo
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2:46 $0.99
18. Troika from Lt. Kije
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2:47 $0.99
Available as MP3, MP3 320, and FLAC files.


Album Notes
The Caliban Quartet of Bassoonists has been praised by critics around the world for its brilliant playing, inventive programming, and sunny good humour. Who better to lead you through a varied collection of sparkling Christmas music? Their new CD "Caliban Does Christmas" includes everything from comedy to swing to gorgeous ballads and classics. For this CD, the Quartet is joined by five different singers, two drummers and even a partridge in a pear tree. The queen of vocal comedy herself, soprano Mary Lou Fallis, sings four tunes including a goofy 1957 hit, "Too Fat for the Chimney" and Fred Silver's hilarious "The 12 Days After Christmas." The Quartet is delighted to present their special guest, Canadian folk music legend Valdy, winner of two Juno Awards and holder of four gold records including the huge hit "Play Me a Rock-and-Roll Song". He joins Caliban for the sweet and gentle "The Secret of Christmas" and his own "Secret Santa", written especially for this CD. Two of Canada's finest jazz singers are on board for tunes like "Santa Claus is Coming to Town" and the beautiful "What Are You Doing New Year's Eve?"; Bonnie Brett is a frequent guest of Toronto's finest jazz clubs and Heather Bambrick is a brilliant up-and-comer who was named Jazz Vocalist of the Year at the 2004 National Jazz Awards. Georgian music expert Alan Gasser joins in for a bracing rendition of a traditional Georgian Christmas tune. Cameo appearances by players like jazz trumpet star Guido Basso, trombonist Alain Trudel, trumpeter Guy Few and jazz drummer Brian Barlow round out the collection. A sensational line-up of talent and tunes guaranteed to bring a smile to your Christmas season.

Read a rave review of the CD at

Other comments:

"Where there are bassoonists, there is good humor. In several pieces... musical comedian Mary Lou Fallis has me in stitches.... Heather Bambrick's sensuous and sultry voice is perfect.... There are some other surprises and oddities... that set this album apart from any other Christmas compilation I have ever heard. I cannot imagine a more original Christmas album than this, and it is certain to put a smile on your face." (American Record Guide, November/December 2006)

"A completely crazy, out-of-this-world Christmas CD... A real pick-me-up cocktail." (Claude Saucier in the LCBO magazine, A Bon Verre, Bonne Table, 2005)

"I just don’t know how they can play the instrument as well as they do, with tongues in cheeks... Most of this disc is light and fun but there are more serious tracks. You’d be surprised how well some things work for bassoon quartet, like Sleigh Ride by Leroy Anderson, or selections from The Nutcracker by Tchaikovsky. It’s all expertly played and recorded. Five [stars] out of five." â€" Rick Phillips, Sound Advice, CBC Radio (December 3&4, 2005)

"The Caliban Quartet is pretty handy around these honking musical beasts... My favourites were Tom Lehrer's satirical "A Christmas Carol" and the Fred Silver-written "The 12 Days After Christmas," both sung by Fallis. The Calibans are brilliant in an all-instrumental rendition of the original "Twelve Days of Christmas." The five gold rings? Five cellphone tones. Very funny. There's something here for everybody." -- John Terauds, Toronto Star, Dec.8, 2005

"A perfect balance between traditional pieces, comedy, and surprises." â€" La Scena Musicale, December 2005

"A cheerful and accomplished CD." â€" The WholeNote Magazine, December 2005

"Unbelievably Beautiful!... It is an honour to know musicians of your collective calibre, and to record with you is equally over the moon; this is the finest I've EVER sounded. All God's children need an arranger and producer and engineer like those!... We must now endeavor to get the world hooked on this beautiful, fun, extraordinary CD. Caliban Does Christmas, and the bar has been raised."
(Valdy, Canadian Folksinging Star, September 2005)

"You made a dark and rainy Salt Spring morning shimmer and glow with your wonderful music! I love this new disc, it's a total delight from start to finish, thank you, thank you!" (S. Weeks, British Columbia)


to write a review


A Double-Reed Player's Christmas Wish Come True
A refreshing change from the run-of-the-mill Christmas album! Seemingly effortless technique, blended with great tone, musical sensitivity, and a dash of holiday humor. Anyone who can make "The 12 Days of Christmas" fresh deserves high praise indeed.

Margaret Richter

Very fun for Christmas!
I love this CD - it's now an important part of my Christmas CD rotation. The bassoons-only songs are the best, though. They're so creative and amazingly well-executed.

John Jadus

Awesome Christmas Album
I am always amazed at the high level of musicianship of the Caliban quartet. Perfect intonation and technique of the highest degree. Then they layer on their own particular style of humor and spice it with jazz. The guest artists are of the highest caliber making this one of my favorite Christmas CDs. Brilliant from start to finish.


Bassoon daughter likes it
Frankly it doesn't do much for me although it seems nice enough. But then my hearing went bad years ago and I'm not much into bassoons personally. Choral and folk music is more my line. However, my daughter who asked for it and received it for a Christmas gift and studied bassson at the Eastman School of Music thinks it is great. I can only defer to her judgement.

Kelly Norman

Fun & Festive all in one
This CD is a fabulous mix of instrumental tunes & vocal numbers... Hugely funny & every moment enjoyable. I absolutely recommend the "Twelve Days of Christmas" as the best version ever recorded!

Wendy Azrak

Wonderful gift to my bassonist-in-training, her teacher, and others.
Wonderful gift for my "bassoonist-in-training" daughter, her teacher, and several other musical devotees on our list.

Bill in the Pacific Northwest

At last, non-hokey double reed holiday music
Great fun and good music making, and not just for bassoonists. Very professional vocals.

Cathy McGuire

WOW- and that doesn't even begin to describe this wonderful mix! Fantastic playing throughout the ensemble- especially enjoyed the contra technique displayed. Bravo. Need to order more for Christmas gifts- should be a MUST on every bassoon players holiday list.