It was in 1997, not 1977 when Cynthia Basinet recorded her beautiful rendition of Eartha Kitt’s 1953 classic, “Santa Baby” as a Christmas gift for her lover. At the time, she did not envision the global impact that would accompany this tune, flanked by its equally rampant mistaken identity. More than two decades later, this rendition has amassed millions of streams, been played on radios worldwide, and been featured in numerous Christmas playlists. At the same time, this track has been mistakenly attributed to Marilyn Monroe…call that a contrasting fortune. While there have been notable covers of this track by artists like Madonna, Lady Gaga, Taylor Swift, Ariana Grande, and others, Cynthia’s version is particularly distinctive.
Let’s talk about her vocal efficiency. My god, this lady can sing. Her strong bluesy vocals pack a powerful punch, gracefully navigating the dulcet jazz foundation with effortless power.
Her jazzy vocal tones seamlessly blend with the delicate piano, the bass, and the saxophone, which adds depth, elegance, and crystal-clear polish to the arrangement.
Her vocal aptitude hits a listener right in the nostalgia, and I love how proficiently she maintains the cheeky personality of the jam similar to the original but with an identifiable vocal imprint that is uniquely her own!
Cynthia Basinet has come from far, changing narratives at every turn. I mean, she is a successful author, fashion model, actress, and jazz music virtuoso, and she deserves to be recognized and commended as her artist and voice that achieved such a splendid cover.
Her intriguing stories can be explored in her podcast, “The World According to Cynthia,” along with her latest recordings from Nashville.
With this rendition earning her global resonance, it’s only right that we continue streaming and adding it to our Christmas playlists, and sharing it even more for Cynthia to finally earn the recognition she deserves as the captivating singer who voiced this classic!