Cool Yule

Bette Midler

She smiles, she sizzles, she coos, she swings. So goes the lively and completely charming Christmas record by the cheeky Divine one. There’s never a note out of place, a chart too excessive, or the sentiments too sentimental. Plus Midler’s tasty stable of producers and arrangers have packed the big band and stringed arrangements with their own musical warmth against Midler’s smart song choices and contagious vocal performances. Cool Yule mixes the standard traditional pop pieces—like Steve Allen’s snappy title track, “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas,” and “I’ll Be Home for Christmas”—with the sole hymn, “O Come, O Come, Emanuel.” But nobody’s picking up this stocking stuffer because they want to go to church. Bette’s got merrymaking on her mind more than anything else. Her duet with Johnny Mathis on “Winter Wonderland/Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!” is as much fun as her “From a Distance (Christmas Version)” is a somber and sobering antiwar statement. How she can move from sounding girlish and playful to sophisticated and jazz-smart in the space of one note to the next may not be supernaturally inspired, but it sure is fun to hear the joyful sounds she makes. From her lips to your ears, you gotta love it.

  • Merry Christmas
  • Cool Yule
  • Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas
  • Winter Wonderland/Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!
  • I'll Be Home For Christmas
  • What Are You Doing New Year's Eve?
  • I've Got My Love To Keep Me Warm
  • O Come, O Come, Emmanuel
  • Mele Kalikimaka
  • From A Distance (Christmas Version)
  • White Christmas