Craft Recordings is excited to announce the digital release of Teddy Pendergrass’s holiday gem, This Christmas (I’d Rather Have Love). Making its digital debut on Nov. 3rd, this long-awaited album, celebrating its 25th anniversary, offers a soulful blend of original songs like “Happy Kwanzaa” and “Christmas and You,” alongside classic festive tunes including “Little Drummer Boy,” “Oh Holy Night,” and “The Christmas Song.”
Fresh from a starring role in the gospel musical “Your Arms Too Short to Box with God” and preparing to publish his autobiography, “Truly Blessed,” Pendergrass was inspired to create his first-ever Christmas album. Collaborating with regular partners like Grammy-winning songwriter/producer Reggie Calloway and songwriter/producer Jim Salamone, Pendergrass crafted a unique blend of holiday magic. The album also featured Pendergrass’s distinctive take on traditional holiday classics like “Joy to the World,” “Little Drummer Boy,” and “Oh Holy Night.”
“What a thrill to realize that Teddy’s album is being re-released! So many great memories are attached to the creation of this timeless work,” said Jim Salamone, album producer. “It will be very satisfying for people to be able to enjoy this record every Holiday season.” Adds Daniel Markus, Pendergrass’s co-manager “Teddy was very proud of this album. He put it all together himself with some help from the Calloway Brothers (of Midnight Star fame) and Jim [Salamone].”
Upon its original release in September 1998, This Christmas (I’d Rather Have Love) landed at No. 83 on Billboard’s Top R&B Hip-Hop Albums chart. After Pendergrass’s passing in 2010, the album experienced a resurgence, peaking at No. 43 on the Holiday Albums chart. Critics praised the record for its romantic allure, with AllMusic noting that Pendergrass’s “smoldering vocals” make it “one of the most romantic seasonal records on the market.” Now, fans can enjoy this timeless holiday classic in the digital realm, keeping Teddy Pendergrass’s legacy alive for a new generation of music lovers.
You can pre-save the album now.