Judging from merchandise in Waco stores, the Christmas season started in earnest the day after Halloween. Christmas has been on the mind of Texas country singer-songwriter Wade Bowen for months before that.
The reason why arrives today with the release of Bowen's first Christmas album, "Twelve Twenty-Five" and the album art tips off much of its sound with a 1950s style framing (The multi-colored (((STEREO))) tag at the top is a nice touch).
Bowen says it's a throwback of sorts to the 1950s Christmas albums his family listened to, and his sisters sung along with, when he was growing up. It's got some tradition Christmas ("Silent Night," "O Holy Night"), some unique choices (George Michael's "Last Christmas," Mariah Carey's "All I Want For Christmas Is You"), some country (Dolly Parton's "Once Upon A Christmas," Merle Haggard's "If We Make It Through December") and some family, literally (sons Bruce and Brock join in the singing as does brother-in-law Cody Canada).
Those who like to hear their Christmas music live will get their chance with Bowen in a few weeks as the Waco native returns for a day-after-Thanksgiving show at The Backyard, with the likelihood he'll add some holiday tunes to the concert set list.