John Legend previewed his upcoming holiday LP, A Legendary Christmas, with two new tracks: the original “Bring Me Love” and a jazzy rendition of “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” featuring Esperanza Spalding.
On the latter Yuletide staple, Legend unfurls his dramatic vibrato over electric guitar, organ, upright bass and wild drums that veer from swinging to stuttering. Spalding adds snappy backing vocals to the track.
The Motown-leaning “Bring Me Love” opens with soulful a drum groove that recalls the Supremes’ “You Can’t Hurry Love.” “I don’t need my stocking filled with toys, and I don’t need no joys to bring me joy,” Legend sings over horns, piano, congas and stacked vocal harmonies. “Baby, I haven’t hung my mistletoe ’cause without you, baby, I can’t see no point.”
A Legendary Christmas, out October 26th, is Legend’s first holiday record. Raphael Saadiq produced the project, which also features a harmonica guest spot from Stevie Wonder on “What Christmas Means to Me.” The album also includes Legend’s takes on “Silver Bells” and “The Christmas Song (Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire),” among other Christmas tunes.
Legend will promote the LP on a North American tour that kicks off November 15th in Clearwater, Florida and concludes December 30th in San Diego, California.