The Last Month of the Year

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The Last Month of the Year
Studio album by The Kingston Trio
Released October 3, 1960
Recorded June 1960, Capitol Studios, Hollywood, CA
Genre Folk, Christmas
Length 27:28
Label Capitol T/ST-1446
Producer Voyle Gilmore
The Kingston Trio chronology
String Along
(1960)
The Last Month of the Year
(1960)
Make Way
(1961)

The Last Month of the Year is an album of Christmas music by The Kingston Trio, released in 1960 (see 1960 in music). It became the first Kingston Trio album release to fall below expected sales and Capitol withdrew the album from circulation shortly after its release.[1] In 1992 the tracks were digitally re-mastered from the original three-track master session tapes and it was reissued on CD, but was once again deleted from the Capitol catalog.

History[edit]

The Last Month of the Year is considered their most musically ambitious and also one of the Trio's least known. It was recorded in 1960 between shows at The Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles, CA.

Nick Reynolds stated in an interview for the liner notes of The Guard Years: "It wasn't your standard Christmas album. That's why we called it The Last Month of the Year. It was a pretty complicated little album, some very intricate stuff. Dave (Guard) brought in a lot of the arrangements with stuff like bouzouki instrumentation; Buckwheat (David Wheat, the Trio's bassist) played some wonderful gut-string guitar. We really worked hard on that one, laying down a lot of the instrumental tracks before we did the vocals, working on harmonies over and over. David (Guard) was responsible for a lot of that album, but we all brought things in... Musically, it came off very well; it just didn't sell."[1]

Reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4.5/5 stars[2]

Sales for the album fell far below expected sales and Capitol withdrew the album from circulation shortly after its release.[1]

In his Allmusic review, critic David A. Milberg called the The Last Month of the Year "An essential part of any Christmas album collection, these are true Christmas folk songs, from spirituals to Old English rounds."[2]

Reissues[edit]

  • The Last Month of the Year was reissued in 1991 on CD by Capitol, with eight other albums from the Dave Guard era.
  • In 1997, all of the tracks from The Last Month of the Year were included in The Guard Years 10-CD box set issued by Bear Family Records.
  • The album was reissued on CD again in 1999 by Collectors' Choice Music.

Track listing[edit]

Side one[edit]

  1. "Bye Bye Thou Little Tiny Child" (Dave Guard) – 2:35
  2. "The White Snows of Winter" (Bob Shane, Tom Drake) – 2:34
  3. "We Wish You a Merry Christmas" (Paul Campbell) – 1:34
  4. "All Through the Night" (Nick Reynolds) – 2:44
  5. "Goodnight My Baby" (Reynolds) – 1:54
  6. "Go Where I Send Thee" (Guard, Reynolds, Shane) – 2:31

Side two[edit]

  1. "Follow Now, Oh Shepherds" (Gretchen Guard) – 2:49
  2. "Somerset Gloucestershire Wassail" (Dave Guard, E. Schwandt) – 1:47
  3. "Mary Mild" (Miriam Stafford, Shane, Drake) – 2:50
  4. "A Round About Christmas" (Reynolds) – 1:30
  5. "Sing We Noel" (Dave Guard) – 2:03
  6. "The Last Month of the Year (What Month Was Jesus Born In)" (Hall, Tartt, Lomax) – 2:37

Personnel[edit]

Production notes (1991 CD version)[edit]

  • Produced by Voyle Gilmore
  • Engineered by Pete Abbot
  • Compilation produced and researched by Ron Furmanek
  • Digitally remastered by Bob Norberg
  • Remixed by Ron Furmanek and Bob Norberg

Chart positions[edit]

Year Chart Position
1960 Billboard Pop Albums 11

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Liner notes: The Kingston Trio: The Guard Years, 1997, by Bill Bush.
  2. ^ a b Milberg, David A. "The Last Month of the Year > Review". Allmusic. Retrieved January 31, 2011. 

External links[edit]