Music Article

Xmas Cheers (and Jeers)

How not to get Scrooged on new holiday music. New seasonal CDs that are naughty and nice

FAMILY AFFAIR Wainwright joins his mom and other kin for The McGarrigle Christmas Hour
FAMILY AFFAIR Wainwright joins his mom and other kin for The McGarrigle Christmas Hour

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KATE AND ANNA MCGARRIGLE
The McGarrigle Christmas Hour (Nonesuch) It's a family affair, with Rufus and Martha Wainwright and other offspring joining in. (Emmylou Harris is honorary kin.) The hushed chamber feel keeps up even as sisterly hymns give way to Rufus covering Frank Loesser. A-

THE LEEVEES
Hanukkah Rocks (Reprise) How often have you said, ''Finally, the perfect menorah-friendly rock CD!''...only to be let down again? But these dudes do dreidel rock proud. And cuts like ''Kugel'' and ''Gelt Melts'' make this the most gastro-centric disc since Weird Al's heyday. B+

VARIOUS ARTISTS
To: Kate — A Benefit for Kate's Sake (Western Beat) E Streeter Garry Tallent hit the Americana trail to score talent for this charity disc. Steve Earle recuts ''Nothing but a Child'' with new bride Allison Moorer; not-so-newlyweds Buddy and Julie Miller gently swing ''Away in a Manger.'' B

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