The 2001 remastered edition of NOEL features 6 bonus tracks and new cover art as well as a replica of the original cover and liner notes.
Personnel: Joan Baez (vocals, guitar); Peter Schickele (arranger, conductor).
Producer: Maynard Solomon.
Reissue producer: Mark Spector.
Originally released on Vanguard (79230). Includes original liner notes by Joan Baez and reissue liner notes by Peter Schickele.
Digitally remastered by Jeff Zaraya.
This is part of Vanguard's Original Master series.
Personnel: Joan Baez (vocals, guitar).
Liner Note Authors: Joan Baez; Peter Schickele.
Photographer: Marshall Fallwell.
Unknown Contributor Role: Georgette Cartwright.
Arranger: Peter Schickele.
An unexpectedly delightful collection of traditional Christmas carols, 1966's NOEL is one of a handful of Joan Baez albums arranged and produced by Peter Schickele--better known as comedic classical performer P.D.Q. Bach--during the mid-'60s. Even more than 1968's baroquely-orchestrated BAPTISM, NOEL sounds more like a Peter Schickele album than a Joan Baez album. Nearly a third of the 17 tracks are instrumentals on which Baez doesn't even appear, and although her voice is front and center throughout, Schickele's arrangements largely use it as merely another instrument in his ornate arrangements. A German-sung version of "Ave Maria" and a delicate rendering of "Coventry Carol" are particularly beautiful.