Martina McBride’s swingin‘ Christmas

Fanning Out

McBride goes jazzy for the holidays

She may be a Grammy-nominated country artist but Martina McBride has pretty diverse tastes in music.

Ask her who her influences are and she’ll name people like Aretha Franklin, Linda Ronstadt and Pat Benatar. “Just a lot of big, big singers and big, belty voices.”

And for Christmas, she’s just released “It’s the Holiday Season,” an album with Christmas standards such as “Frosty the Snowman,” “Home for the Holidays” and “It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas,” that come complete with the big band sound.

“I really wanted it to sound like those old Frank Sinatra/Ella Fitzgerald/Dean Martin records,” the 52-year-old Kansas native explains. “So we cut it at Capital Studios in L.A. with a big band and (frequent Sinatra collaborator) Patrick Williams did all the arrangements, so it’s really authentic. It’s beautiful and it’s fun. And my goal was to make a record that sounded like those records and not a copy of those records. So it’s really authentic sounding and I think it’s also going to stand the test of time. I think it’s the kind of record people can put on year after year after year.

George Dickie

George Dickie

George Dickie has been a features writer for Gracenote/Tribune Media Services since 1989, when “Hee-Haw” was still on the air and George “Goober” Lindsay was his first interview. His early interviews ranged from Jim Henson and Dick Van Dyke to Phil Collins and the Dixie Chicks.

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