Merry Christmas, Baby (feat. Rod Stewart & Trombone Shorty)
Label: Elektra (NEK)
CeeLo's Christmas spectacular is just like one of his Vegas shows. It's audacious and unabashedly cheesy, and bolstered by prodigious vocal talent. The best moments are the over-the-top ones, like when he duets with the Muppets on "All I Need Is Love," or plays tomcat to Christina Aguilera's shy kitty on "Baby It's Cold Outside." There's also an imaginative rewrite of Joni Mitchell's "River" as a holiday tune, and a heartwarming rendition of Donny Hathaway's "This Christmas." The overwrought gospel of "Mary, Did You Know?" might make CeeLo's secular fans cringe, but c'mon -- it's Christmas.