Audio Mixers: Randy Waldman; Woody Woodruff.
Recording information: Bennett Studios, Englewood, NJ; Bergen/PAC Theatre, Engelwood, NJ; Capitol studios, Los Angeles, CA; Deep Diner Studios, New York, NY; East West Studios, Los Angeles, CA; Echo Beach STudios, Jupiter, FL; Entourage Studios, North Hollywood, CA; Moonee Ponds Studios, Malibu, CA; NRG Studios, North Hollywood, CA; Pacific Studios, North Hollywood, CA; Randini Studio, Studio City, CA; Ron Rose Productions, Tampa, FL.
Photographer: Rav Holly.
Longtime friends and long-ago Grease co-stars John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John chose to team up once again in 2012, this time for a Christmas album designed to benefit their respective charities, the Olivia Newton-John Cancer & Wellness Center and the Jett Travolta Foundation. So, This Christmas is camp for a cause, a cheerful celebration of the familiar trappings of the season. There are friends by the busload -- Cliff Richard, Chick Corea, Barbra Streisand, Kenny G, Tony Bennett, and James Taylor all pop in for a tune -- there's a production as clean and crisp as newly fallen snow, there's as much cheesy Christmas cheer as a stack of reindeer sweaters sitting underneath a plastic Christmas tree. Musically, the only left turn arrives in the amiably rocking new song "I Think You Might Like It" -- its guitars sound randier than the rest of the record but that's certainly on a relative scale -- otherwise these are songs you know by heart, all sung with a visible smile that's either ingratiating or insufferably, unwittingly campy, depending on your perspective. The thing of it is, This Christmas winds up serving both audiences equally well: it'll brighten the season of fans who take this at face value, and for those looking for a ridiculous dose of celeb Christmas cheer, Travolta's asides to "Liv" will more than fulfill their needs. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine