By Ralph Burnett
Of the 13 albums that David Benoit has recorded as a leader, one was quite a surprise -- not a surprise in content or performance, but in design. "Christmastime is probably one of the few Christmas albums that was actually recorded during Christmas time," says Benoit, referring to the tradition that Christmas albums are recorded in the dead of Summer in order to reach the retail stores by the holidays. "We recorded it on December 22nd , and it was meant as a cassette tape Christmas present to my friends. During the session we had eggnog and a little brandy and it was at night so we were all like in the holiday spirit. The whole thing was recorded that night and I like to think that we captured something special. A year later AVI called me and said that they wanted to put it out as a record and I said oh, cool." Sharing the spirits with David on this date were guitarist Jimmy Fox, bassist Wade Short and drummer Tony Morales. Along with Christmastime, five other early Benoit AVI titles are currently available on CD through Mesa/Bluemoon Recordings.