Various Artists

Ocean Drive Christmas, Vol. 2

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AllMusic Review by

This is such a good-natured collection of holiday soul, that -- like its predecessor -- it's a shame to leave it stored away for 11 months of the year. All of the acts here are associated at some level with the beach music scene in the Carolinas, but the diversity of sounds among these 14 tracks leaves lots of room for variety. From the opening "Wrapped in Your Arms" by the Band of Oz, the mostly elegantly harmonized and produced vibes that run through this collection -- interspersed with a few slightly harder sounds such as the Embers' "Boogie Woogie Shake Shag on Christmas" and "What You Done Got for Me" by King Tyrone & the Graveyard Ramblers (actually, a fiercely topical number, resounding with class consciousness) -- make this is a CD that will charm listeners in private and also delight partygoers. So, in that regard, it's kind of an all-purpose CD, and well worth owning for beach music and R&B enthusiasts. Even the distinctly latter-day Drifters are welcome with their cover of the Beach Boys' "Little Saint Nick," putting an interesting vocal spin on some instrumental riffs from the original. As with its predecessor, the sound is excellent, and one only wishes there were more annotation.

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