Title - 'Mitch Ryder Christmas, Take A Ride'
Artist - Mitch Ryder
For those not in the know, William S. Levise, Jr. (born February 26, 1945), known better by his stage name Mitch Ryder, is an American musician who has recorded more than two dozen albums over more than four decades.
Ryder is noted for his gruff, wailing singing style and his dynamic stage performances. He was influenced by his father, a musician. As a teenager, Ryder sang backup with a black soul-music group known as the Peps, but racial animosities interfered with his continued presence in the group.
Ryder formed his first band, Tempest, when he was at Warren High School, and the group gained some notoriety playing at a Detroit soul music club called The Village.
Ryder next appeared fronting a band named Billy Lee & The Rivieras, which had limited success until they met songwriter / record producer Bob Crewe.
Crewe renamed the group Mitch Ryder & The Detroit Wheels, and they recorded several hit records for his DynoVoice Records and New Voice labels in the mid to late 1960s, most notably "Devil with a Blue Dress On", their highest-charting single at number 4, as well as "Sock It to Me, Baby!", a number 6 hit in 1967, and "Jenny Take a Ride!", which reached number 10 in 1965.
The Detroit Wheels were John Badanjek on drums, Mark Manko on lead guitar, Joe Kubert on rhythm guitar, Jim McCarty on lead guitar and Jim McAllister on bass.
Now you get to celebrate the holiday season with one of the most distinctive voices in rock history, the brilliant Mitch Ryder!
Yep, on the just-released Christmas, Take A Ride (Goldenlane Records), the aforementioned voice of "Devil With A Blue Dress" and "Jenny Take A Ride!' breathes new life into some holiday classics made famous by Elvis Presley, Stevie Wonder, Mariah Carey, and more!
1. 'What Christmas Means to Me'
2. 'Blue Christmas'
3. 'Santa Claus Is Coming to Town'
4. 'Someday at Christmas'
5. 'Jingle Bell Rock'
6. 'Santa Claus'
7. 'Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer'
8. 'Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)'
9. 'Sleigh Ride'
10. 'Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer'
11. 'Let It Snow'
12. 'Put a Little Love in Your Heart'
We begin with the soulful Motown sway of 'What Christmas Means to Me' and it's a track that introduces you perfectly to what to expect from this quite delicious new Christmas gathering. Then comes a lush, and not Elvis impersonated (luckily) 'Blue Christmas' which is backed by a slightly less frantic version of 'Santa Claus Is Coming to Town.'
Up next is a yearning 'Someday at Christmas,' and then one of my own personal favorites amongst the festive bunch, a cozy lil' 'Jingle Bell Rock.' A guitar-laden doozy in 'Santa Claus' is next and is followed by a shut-your-eyes-and-believe rendition of 'Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.'
A powerful dose of soul-music springs forth within 'Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)' with a vibrant 'Sleigh Ride' along next. Then comes the always-fun 'Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer,' with the album coming to a close with the quietly delightful 'Let It Snow,' and then the Jackie DeShannon hit (albeit not necessarily a Christmas track), 'Put a Little Love in Your Heart' wrapping things up.
Mitch has been inducted into the Michigan Rock 'N' Roll Hall Of Fame, and he continues to perform live (both with and without The Detroit Wheels) around the country!
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