R&B Stars Tape Soul Train Xmas Special

SANTA MONICA, California — With temperatures in the 70s, the weather outside was anything but frightful, but Christmas was definitely in the air at the Civic Auditorium on Monday for the taping of Soul Train's holiday special.

R&B stars past and present — including Smokey Robinson, Brian McKnight, Kelly Price, Yolanda Adams, Peabo Bryson, Jeffrey Osborne, Vanessa L. Williams — and Lou Rawls, via tape — contributed their favorite Christmas tunes for a crowd of about 5,000. "The Soul Train Christmas Starfest" will be syndicated nationally this holiday season.

Price, who performed "The Christmas Song," said she is working on a holiday inspired album to be released next year that will include some collaborations "you couldn't guess if you tried."

"I'm going to Nashville to do some writing," she said. "Country is still one of the purest forms of music out there."

Price said the album will include a duet with a "major female country

star" on a tune Price has written, "Mary's Song."

Meanwhile, Williams, who brought down the house with "What Child Is This", said she too has some holiday-themed career moves planned, including a TV movie in which she will play a female version of Ebenezer Scrooge.