Skip to content

Ibrahim Maalouf – First Noel (2021) [Official Digital Download 24bit/48kHz]

Ibrahim Maalouf – First Noel (2021)
FLAC (tracks) 24bit/48kHz | Time – 01:13:25 minutes | 778 MB | Genre: Jazz
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download | Front Cover | © Mi’ster

As much as jazz musicians love to do it, the Christmas album exercise can quickly turn stale. Especially when you opt for a repertoire essentially composed of hits like Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas, Oh Christmas Tree, Il est né le divin enfant, Petit Papa Noël, Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow, Silent Night and Jingle Bells. But here, Ibrahim Maalouf has managed to create an impeccable record that gives his trumpet an even better showcase than usual. The starting point of the project is a set of very personal values. “It’s an album of 25 great Christmas standards and 3 new songs that I wrote to celebrate both my son’s very first Christmas and my grandmother Odette’s very last one last year. My memories of Christmas are full of wonderful moments and I wanted to record the album in a way that would capture the magic of those moments.“

For this classical, touching effort, Maalouf brought in three friends: guitarist François Delporte, pianist Frank Woeste and choir director Sofi Jeannin, who has selected eight singers with angelic voices. The whole group met in two different recording locations: Armand Amar’s Babel studios in Montreuil, where Ibrahim Maalouf worked on his first albums, and the Saint-Julien-le-Pauvre church, the oldest church in Paris, a few metres from Notre-Dame, where his father was sacristan in the 1960s; it was also where the trumpeter got engaged and married…

Bolstered by all these strong symbols, First Noël moves forward with simplicity and humility, emphasising the melodies above all, without any kind of Hollywood arrangements. “After having recorded so many albums, I felt that the time had come to set down my version of these great Christmas classics, giving them a less childish, more musical dimension, and a more spiritual aspect as well: but at the same time preserving their necessary and subtle fragility as music for children, and as great classics known and sung worldwide.” The end result is a soothing, dreamlike, fraternal and universal journey. – Marc Zisman

1. Ibrahim Maalouf – Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas
2. Ibrahim Maalouf – Mon beau sapin
3. Ibrahim Maalouf – Holly Jolly Christmas
4. Ibrahim Maalouf – Il est né le divin enfant
5. Ibrahim Maalouf – O Holy Night
6. Ibrahim Maalouf – Petit Papa Noël
7. Ibrahim Maalouf – Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!
8. Ibrahim Maalouf – The First Noel
9. Ibrahim Maalouf – Ave Maria (Charles Gounod)
10. Ibrahim Maalouf – Santa Claus Is Coming to Town
11. Ibrahim Maalouf – Winter Wonderland
12. Ibrahim Maalouf – Silent Night
13. Ibrahim Maalouf – Jingle Bells
14. Ibrahim Maalouf – It’s Beginning To Look a Lot Like Christmas
15. Ibrahim Maalouf – Hark! The Herald Angels Sing
16. Ibrahim Maalouf – I’ll Be Home for Christmas
17. Ibrahim Maalouf – White Christmas
18. Ibrahim Maalouf – Ave Maria (Franz Schubert)
19. Ibrahim Maalouf – All I Want for Christmas Is You
20. Ibrahim Maalouf – What a Wonderful World
21. Ibrahim Maalouf – Light a Candle in the Chapel
22. Ibrahim Maalouf – Adeste Fideles
23. Ibrahim Maalouf – God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen
24. Ibrahim Maalouf – We Wish You a Merry Christmas
25. Ibrahim Maalouf – Shubho Lhaw Qolo
26. Ibrahim Maalouf – Noel for Nael
27. Ibrahim Maalouf – Christmas 2009
28. Ibrahim Maalouf – The Last Christmas Eve


%d bloggers like this: