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The Star Ledger
Middlesex Ledger
Thursday, October 25, 2007

Larry Campanella "Can't It Last a Little After Christmas"

three stars

Pulse Online 12/23/05

Can't it last a little after Christmas? Yes it can, thanks to Larry Campanella, a special education teacher at New Brunswick 's McKinley Community School and performer at this year's city tree lighting ceremony. Campanella has released the album "Can't It Last A Little After Christmas" through his Web site, www.palmbeach, and it's a seasonal treat that's sure to please.

Campanella's not reinventing the Christmas wreath here, but he has a warm, distinctive singing voice that's somewhat of a cross between Johnny Ray and Burl Ives. We mean that in the best possible way. All the Christmas standards are here, and an original, too. The title track is a sweet lament on the passing nature of the Christmas spirit. A portion of the proceeds goes to Hurricane Katrina relief, according to the Web site.

Chris Jordan, Pulse writer


The South Brunswick Post 11/23/05

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Larry Campanella will perform at the New Brunswick tree lighting on Nov. 28.

   Even on a sultry July day in Palm Beach , Fla. , Larry Campanella can get into the holiday spirit.
    The Dayton resident spent two months this summer recording his second Christmas album, "Can't It Last a Little After Christmas" ? splitting studio time between his native New Jersey and his former home in Palm Beach , Fla.
    One might think it a tricky task to belt out renditions of Elvis' "Blue Christmas" while gazing at palm trees instead of trimmed trees, but, for Mr. Campanella, it was simple.
    "I envisioned myself performing at live events, like tree lightings," he said. "The time of year didn't play a factor because I can always get in the mood to sing Christmas songs."
    Soon, Mr. Campanella can cease using his imagination to radiate the holiday spirit. On Nov. 28, he will be performing at the New Brunswick tree lighting. The event takes place at 5 p.m. at Monument Square , located on Livingston Avenue at George Street .
    Mr. Campanella, a native of New Jersey who returned from the Sunshine State two years ago and lives on Aster Way , said he was inspired to create holiday albums due to his longstanding love of Christmas.
    "I always enjoyed the holidays ? growing up it was my favorite time of year," he said. While digesting movies like "Miracle on 34th Street " and "White Christmas," Mr. Campanella formed an appreciation for holiday jingles.
    "I always enjoyed the standard Christmas songs ? I started singing them as a kid," he said.
    So, when creating his latest album, it wasn't hard for him to select which songs to include.
    "I picked out the most popular ones over the years, and some of my personal favorites as well," Mr. Campanella said. "When you have Bing Crosby, Nat King Cole, Elvis, you just can't go wrong."
    Not all of the songs he sings in the sprit of the holidays are renditions, however. An original song ? which serves as the namesake for the album, "Can't It Last a Little After Christmas" ? was written specifically for Mr. Campanella by friends Gloria Nissenson and Marcia DeFren.
    Other songs on Mr. Campanella's 10-track album include "Holly Jolly Christmas," "Felice Navidad" and "Let It Snow."
    Mr. Campanella said his favorite singers, Harry Connick Jr. and Johnny Mathis, have inspired his style. " I consider myself a crooner," he said. "They tell me I sound like Elvis when I do my "Blue Christmas."
    To be consistent with the true spirit of the season, Mr. Campanella has pledged to donate 20 percent of the album's proceeds to the Red Cross. The money will be earmarked for distribution to those affected by hurricanes Katrina, Rita and Wilma. Hurricane Wilma devastated the Florida community Mr. Campanella once called home.
    "Being from West Palm Beach , I just wanted to try to help out those people who could use a little bit of income," he said.
    For more information or to purchase a copy of Mr. Campanella's album, visit his Web site at