Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Consumer Guide Album

Freddy Fender: Feliz Navidad: Merry Christmas From Freddy Fender [ABC/Dot, 1977]
A tough ex-con blissfully unembarrassed by sentimentality, and with a terrific sense of rhythm, Freddy could have made a (bilingual!) Christmas album to rank with Phil Spector's. If only Huey Meaux (producer-svengali) hadn't hogged the copyrights, thus keeping Freddy away from "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" (his kind of song!) and--even worse--"Feliz Navidad" itself. But I kind of love it anyway, and if it doesn't match UA's rereleased 12 Hits of Christmas or Rhythm and Blues Christmas, it beats hell out of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir's White (get it?) (do I have to complete this title?) B