I Wanna Be Santa Claus

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I Wanna Be Santa Claus
Studio album by Ringo Starr
Released 19 October 1999 (US)
Recorded September 1998,
March–September 1999,
Whatinthewhatthe? Studios, Los Angeles
Genre Rock and roll, Christmas music
Length 44:59
Label Mercury
Producer Mark Hudson and Ringo Starr
Ringo Starr chronology
VH1 Storytellers
(1998)
I Wanna Be Santa Claus
(1999)
The Anthology... So Far
(2001)
Singles from I Wanna Be Santa Claus
  1. "Come on Christmas, Christmas Come On"
    Released: 1999 (promo only)

I Wanna Be Santa Claus is a Christmas album by Ringo Starr, issued in 1999.

Background and recording[edit]

Ringo Starr and musical partner Mark Hudson composed "Dear Santa" and "Christmas Eve" in July 1998 at Starr's Surrey residence.[1] The pair of the songs were recorded a few months later, between 14 and 16 September in the UK.[1] Follow-up sessions didn't commence till 8 March 1999 at Whatinthewhatthe? Studios in Los Angeles, where the tracks "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer", "The Little Drummer Boy", "Christmas Time (Is Here Again)" and further work on "Dear Santa", were taped that day.[1] Featured on these tracks were Starr, Hudson, Jim Cox and Steve Dudas.[1] Recorded throughout 1999 between Starr and Hudson, I Wanna Be Santa Claus—which is composed of half-and-half traditional songs and new originals—was made in several studios in the US and UK,[1] with their families joining in and including two notable celebrity guests, Aerosmith's Joe Perry and former Eagles member Timothy B. Schmit. Jeff Lynne also sings backing vocals on "Come on Christmas, Christmas Come On",[2] "I Wanna Be Santa Claus",[3] and "Christmas Time (Is Here Again)".[4] The final sessions for the album were held on 8 and 9 September at Whatinthewhatthe? Studios, with mixing taking place at A&M Studios, Los Angeles and Sterling Sound, New York.[1]

Music and lyrics[edit]

The title track is about spreading Christmas cheer on every day of the year, compared to just on Christmas Day.[1]

Release and reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4/5 stars[5]

Released on 19 October 1999, in the US[6] by Mercury,[nb 1][1] ahead of the Christmas season, I Wanna Be Santa Claus was not a commercial success, despite its strong reviews. It was re-released on 23 September 2003 entitled 20th Century Masters: The Best of Ringo Starr/The Christmas Collection.[7] Starr left Mercury after they had done no promotion for the album, which in-turn resulted in little sales.[1]

Track listing[edit]

  1. "Come On Christmas, Christmas Come On" (Richard Starkey, Mark Hudson, Dean Grakal) – 3:36
  2. "Winter Wonderland" (Felix Bernard, Richard B. Smith) – 2:55
  3. "I Wanna Be Santa Claus" (Starkey, Hudson, Dick Monda) – 3:46
  4. "The Little Drummer Boy" (Harry Simeone, Henry Onorati, Katherine K. Davis) – 3:19
    • features Timothy B. Schmit on backing vocals
  5. "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" (Johnny Marks) – 2:21
  6. "Christmas Eve" (Starkey, Hudson) – 4:26
  7. "The Christmas Dance" (Starkey, Hudson, Jim Cox, Steve Dudas) – 4:06
    • followed by studio chatter in between this and the following track
  8. "Christmas Time (Is Here Again)" (George Harrison, John Lennon, Paul McCartney, Richard Starkey) – 4:06
  9. "Blue Christmas" (Bill Hayes, Jay Johnson) – 2:58
  10. "Dear Santa" (Starkey, Hudson, Dudas) – 5:12
  11. "White Christmas" (Irving Berlin) – 2:56
    • features Timothy B. Schmit on backing vocals
    • followed by a short violin piece in between this and the following track
  12. "Pax Um Biscum (Peace Be with You)" (Starkey, Hudson, Scott Gordon) – 4:46

References[edit]

Footnotes
  1. ^ US Mercury 314,546,668-2[1]
Citations
  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Harry, Bill (2004). The Ringo Starr Encyclopedia. London: Virgin Books. p. 220. ISBN 9780753508435. 
  2. ^ Porter, Robert. "Jeff Lynne Song Database – 1990s Songs". Jefflynnesongs.com. Retrieved 28 February 2013.  Scroll down to the section header Miscellaneous production sessions 1997 to 1999 click Come on Christmas, Christmas Come On then click Album Version.
  3. ^ Porter, Robert. "Jeff Lynne Song Database – 1990s Songs". Jefflynnesongs.com. Retrieved 28 February 2013.  Scroll down to the section header Miscellaneous production sessions 1997 to 1999 click I Wanna Be Santa Claus then click Album Version.
  4. ^ Porter, Robert. "Jeff Lynne Song Database – 1990s Songs". Jefflynnesongs.com. Retrieved 28 February 2013.  Scroll down to the section header Miscellaneous production sessions 1997 to 1999 click Christmas Time Is Here Again then click Album Version.
  5. ^ I Wanna Be Santa Claus at AllMusic
  6. ^ Harry, Bill (2004). The Ringo Starr Encyclopedia. London: Virgin Books. p. 166. ISBN 9780753508435. 
  7. ^ Harry, Bill (2004). The Ringo Starr Encyclopedia. London: Virgin Books. p. 294. ISBN 9780753508435.