A Christmas Gift For You (V/A) – LP Philles Records PHLP-4005, 22 de November, 1963.


A Christmas Gift for You ” is an excellent album that brings together various artists and some well -known Christmas songs, released by Philles Records in 1963 and produced by Phil Spector.
Spector produced a number of famous songs “standard” Christmas in his “Wall of Sound” label, which gathered several vocal performances of groups and artists during that time. This LP was released by Philles label, reaching the position # 13 Special Edition Christmas Billboard Magazine / End of year relative to the chart of album sales in December 1963.


Tracks / Tracklist: 
A1 Darlene Love – White Christmas (Irving Berlin)
A2 The Ronettes – Frosty The Snowman (Walter Rollins, Steve Nelson)
A3 Bob B. Soxx And The Blue Jeans – The Bells Of St. Mary (A. Emmett Adams, Douglas Furber)
A4 The Crystals – Santa Claus Is Coming To Town (Haven Gillespie, J. Fred Coots)
A5 The Ronettes – Sleigh Ride (Leroy Anderson, Mitchell Parish)
A6 Darlene Love – Marshmallow World (Carl Sigman, Peter De Rose)
B1 The Ronettes – I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus (Tommie Connor)
B2 The Crystals – Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer (Johnny Marks)
B3 Darlene Love – Winter Wonderland (Dick Smith, Felix Bernard)
B4 The Crystals – Parade Of The Wooden Soldiers (Léon Jessel)
B5 Darlene Love – Christmas (Baby Please Come Home) (Ellie Greenwich, Jeff Barry, Phil Spector)
B6 Bob B. Soxx And The Blue Jeans – Here Comes Santa Claus (Gene Autry, Oakley Haldeman)
B7 Phil Spector And Artists – Silent Night (Traditional)


The Girlfriends were an American girl group who scored one hit in the United States in 1964, “My One and Only Jimmy Boy”.

The group was founded as a result of the splintering of the Los Angeles-based studio group The Blossoms. The four members of the Blossoms – Gloria Jones, Nanette Williams, Fanita James, and Darlene Wright (Darlene Love)- first sang together in 1957. In 1962, Phil Spector created the group Bob B. Soxx and the Blue Jeans with James and Wright; Jones and Williams then formed their own group, The Girlfriends, with Carolyn Willis (formerly of The Ikettes).They released one single, “My One and Only Jimmy Boy”, on Colpix Recordsin 1963, written and produced by David Gates. The record peaked at #49 in 1964. The Girlfriends never released another record. Willis later joined Honey Cone and both she and Jones sang in one of the nostalgia-circuit groups performing as The Shirelles in the 1990s.


Claude Russell Bridges



Claude Russell Bridges
(Born: April 2, 1942 – Lawton, Oklahoma
Died: November 13, 2016 – Nashville, Tennessee

musician, composer, producer, arranger, vocalist, member of the ‘Wrecking Crew’, Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductee, Songwriters Hall of Fame inductee
(photo – 1965, Gold Star studio ‘A’)

Leon Russell, musician known for dynamic performances, dies at 74


Leon Russell, who emerged in the ’70s as one of rock’n’roll’s most dynamic performers and songwriters after playing anonymously on dozens of pop hits as a much-in-demand studio pianist in the 1960s, died on Sunday at the age of 74, according to his website.

Russell, who was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2011, died in his sleep in Nashville, Tennessee, his wife said in a statement on the website.

Russell had endured health problems in his later years, undergoing surgery to stop leaking brain fluid in 2010 and suffering a heart attack in July 2016.

Russell’s period of stardom as a performer was relatively brief but Elton John, who had once been Russell’s opening act, engineered a comeback for him in 2010 when they collaborated on an album titled “The Union.”

“He was my biggest influence as a piano player, a singer and a songwriter,” John told ABC News.

Russell recorded more than 35 albums and also excelled as a songwriter for other performers. His “A Song for You” was recorded by Joe Cocker, the Carpenters, the Temptations, Neil Diamond, Lou Rawls, Dusty Springfield, Ray Charles, Aretha Franklin and his good friend Willie Nelson. The Carpenters, Reddy, Shirley Bassey, Robert Goulet and George Benson all covered Russell’s “This Masquerade,” with Benson’s version winning the 1976 Grammy as record of the year.

Russell was known as “the master of space and time” in his ’70s heyday. He wore a cocked top hat and, with salt-and-pepper hair past his shoulders and a beard that reached his chest, created an inscrutable image that was equal parts shaman, tent revival preacher and cosmic ringmaster.

He ruled the stage with piano-banging abandon and, backed by a multi-piece band and a backup chorus, put on a show that was a roiling stew of rock, soul, gospel and country.


He was born Claude Russell Bridges on April 2, 1942, and grew up in the Tulsa, Oklahoma, area. He was playing in bars at age 14 and joined a band that included J.J. Cale, who also would go on to music stardom.

Russell moved to Los Angeles as American music was taking a new shape. He became part of a talented pool of studio musicians known informally as the Wrecking Crew who provided back up for pop and rock hits of the early and mid-1960s, including those by Jan and Dean, the Beach Boys, the Monkees and the Byrds. Russell also was part of producer Phil Spector’s trademark “Wall of Sound” recording team.

Russell also played guitar, worked as an arranger, songwriter and piano player for the house band on the popular television dance show “Shindig.”

Darlene Love steals the show at Proctors’ Golden Oldies Spectacular

Darlene Love in 2013

“We don’t call them oldies – we call them classics,” said singer Darlene Love during her performance at the annual Golden Oldies Spectacular at Proctors Theatre on Saturday night.

You could say the four-act bill was largely an oldies show for the first two hours, as Bobby Rydell, Lou Christie and Freddie Cannon regaled the packed crowd with songs and stories from decades’ past, reminding the audience – many of whom came of age in the 1950s and ‘60s – how good they had it back then.

But the irrepressible Love came onstage following a brief intermission and interjected a whole lot of energy and some of-the-moment currency into the proceedings, as she did last year when she stole the show during the 2015 golden oldies line-up at the Schenectady theatre.

It helps that the 75-year-old Love has a relatively new album out. Last year the ‘60s girl-group icon – who rarely got a star billing of her own – released “Introducing Darlene Love,” produced by her friend Steven Van Zandt (of Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band) to give Love the full-scale exposure she deserves.

From the newer material she offered up Van Zandt’s passionate and rollicking political caution tale “Among the Believers,” Linda Perry’s retro ballad “Love Kept Us Foolin’ Around” and Elvis Costello’s shimmery standouts “Forbidden Nights” and “Still Too Soon to Know.”

Wearing glittery pants that reflected light like a disco ball, her voice powerful and clear, Love didn’t short the crowd on the classics either, reaching back to the archives for some memorable songs from her days in Phil Spector’s Wall of Sound crew, when she sang in the Crystals and cut a few tracks under her own name but never got the credit she deserved.

That included “(Today I Met) the Boy I’m Gonna Marry,” “Da Doo Ron Ron” and a fantastic-sounding version of the Crystals’ “She’s a Rebel,” which her three stellar backup singers bolstered with a swinging R&B vocal groove. The latter tune “started it all” after Love met mercurial producer Phil Spector in 1962, she said onstage, lamenting that the song sold over three million copies yet “nobody got paid.”

“You know, payback is a mother,” she said of Spector, now in prison for murder. “After all, look where I am and where he is.”

The three previous acts offered a more anodyne version of the ‘60s. “Everything was so easy, so simple back then,” said former teen idol Bobby Rydell, who regaled the crowd with tales of meeting stars like Frank Sinatra and Bobby Darin during his days as a teenager on the cabaret circuit.

Seated on a stool, looking dapper in a blazer and jeans, Rydell gave an impassioned plea for organ donors (a double transplant saved his life in 2012) and sounded in fine form on his vintage, swinging recordings “Forget Him,” “Sway,” “Wildwood Days,” “Volare” and Darin’s signature hit “Mack the Knife.”

The unsung heroes of the night were the members of the house band – including a five-piece horn section – who gave on-point backing throughout the show.

“Lightening” Lou Christie worked hard to hit the high notes on his falsetto-filled repertoire, hamming it up lounge-singer style on “I’m Gonna Make You Mine,” “The Gypsy Cried,” the once-banned “Rhapsody in the Rain,” and the lecherous “Lighten’ Strikes.”

Marking his first-time appearance on the Proctors stage, the entertaining Freddie “Boom Boom” Cannon opened with no-frills, unsentimental versions of his rock and roll hits, including “Tallahassee Lassie,” “Where the Action Is” and “Palisades Park.”

Produced by former Teddy Bears group member, Marshall Leib, Los Angeles based Motown singer/songwriter/producer, FRANK WILSON along with Marc Gordon not only co-wrote this ‘Wall of Sound’ number which was marvelously arranged by Jack Nitzsche & Jerry Long, but also sang the lead vocals at the session. The highly collectible single was issued credited to CHESTER FIELDS as well as CHESTER ST. ANTHONY.