For 20-plus years, Ivan Parker has delighted listeners with a rich lead vocal performing with such southern gospel greats as The Singing Americans and Gold City before going solo. Yet with all that musical mileage, Christmas Dreaming is only the second holiday release of the artist’s career. As such, Parker keeps things simple, not wanting to recreate the wheel as he croons through a solid set of sacred and secular classics.
The title track is the lone original and boasts a toasty jazz vibe while Parker’s take on classics like “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year” and “It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas” follow suit. His rendition of “My Grown-Up Christmas List” is delivered with warm emotion that gives the song life as a western swing soundscape decorates familiar carol “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen,” allowing it new life.
Warm and inviting like a cup of cocoa, Ivan Parker’s Christmas Dreaming delivers a heartfelt dose of Christmas cheer and worship.