Do you have a music lover to shop for this Christmas? If so, I have some ideas to help you.

This week, I offer four album suggestions that will be followed by four more in the Friday, Dec. 18, Out & About.

These also happen to be some of my favorite albums among this year’s releases.

Cat Stevens, “Tea For the Tillerman” — I had the original when it was released in 1970. This recording reflects upon Stevens’ experiences in the 50 years between the two releases.

Dave Alvin, “From An Old Guitar: Rare and Unreleased Recordings” — This presents 16 songs from Alvin’s personal archives, 13 of them covers. From the liner notes I learned most of the tunes were recorded for no other reason than that he and some friends went into the studio to play and record what they all loved and wanted to play. This has turned out to be one of my favorite recordings from Alvin.

Norah Jones, “Pick Me Up Off The Floor” — The reigning queen of the dimly lit, late-night smoky jazz scene has an excellent new recording on her hands. Jones’ innate ability to blend pop songs into a jazzy mix has resulted in a wonderful collection of songs.

Tom Petty, “Wildflowers and All the Rest” — This is quite possibly the most anticipated re-release of any rock ’n’ roll record ever recorded. Petty’s masterpiece, originally released in 1994, finally received the treatment Petty originally envisioned and then some. There are several versions of this, from stripped-down two-CD or three-LP sets with the complete album of 25 songs to the massive nine-LP or five-CD sets. There is a nine-LP Ultra Deluxe Limited Edition set available only at independent record stores.

Rock Cesario owns Triple Play Records, 530 Main St. Email him at

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