Personnel: Jim Avgeris (acoustic guitar, electric guitar); Gabriel Tenorio (electric guitar, classical guitar, bajo sexto, melodica); Paul Morris (electric guitar); Ravi Knypstra (lap steel guitar); Byron Reynolds (drums); Lena Marie Aguirre, Pinky (background vocals).
Audio Mixer: El Vez.
Recording information: Earl's Sound And body Shop.
Arranger: El Vez.
On the surface, El Vez (a.k.a. Robert Lopez) presents himself as a Hispanic Elvis Presley. But that's only the surface story. His delightful musical quilt is one woven out of musical threads originating in the '50s and beyond. This impressive set of Christmas songs is similar to his equally excellent and far-ranging GRACIASLAND.
A true reverence for Presley is brought to bear on music that addresses social issues concerning Southern California. It is a remarkable feat that El Vez's act never falls into novelty or parody. Indeed, it's rare for social commentary to rub shoulders so comfortably with humor, but El Vez pulls it off with grace and aplomb. He can even sing it solely from the heart, as he does on "Christmas Time Is Here." As usual, strong players help flesh out El Vez's superb songwriting.