Christmas is now officially less than 1 week away, so PLEASE tell me you’ve at least STARTED your Christmas shopping. What’s that? You haven’t?? Good Lord, man, what are you waiting for?? Time is slipping away from you. I think the best thing for you to do at this point is click on this Amazon banner:
Man, this bums me out… With all the news about David Letterman retiring in 2015 from CBS’ The Late Show, and Stephen Colbert taking over the reins, I completely failed to realize one of the ramifications of this: That this Christmas, 2014, would be the LAST of Letterman’s annual Christmas Spectaculars, whose arrival each year had become an unabashed holiday tradition for me. (I wrote about last year’s Spectacular HERE. Check it out.)
The Christmas-themed posts are coming fast and furious, but ’tis the season…. I mentioned Andy Cirzan in my piece on the fantastic Jingle Bell Rocks documentary a few days ago. He’s devoted what even would admits is an unhealthy amount of spare time digging around record shops, attics, basements, yard sales, and flea markets for the most obscure holiday records. The kind of music that make you shake your head and wonder how in the hell anybody ever thought recording it was a good idea, and how in the hell anybody ever thought BUYING it was a good idea.
Paul McCartney’s 1979 single ‘Wonderful Christmastime‘ gets an awful lot of airplay this time of the year; it also has to be one of the modern Christmas classics that gets the most crap dumped on it (the other one being Mariah Carey’s ‘All I Want for Christmas is You,’ which is massively popular but also pure evil.) An awful lot of people seem to really hate ‘Wonderful Christmastime,’ which to be honest I’ve never really understood. It is what it is; a simple little pop song, the kind of song Paul McCartney can write in his sleep. He wrote and recorded the whole thing all by himself, and probably never intended it to become an annual headache for so many people. But I’ll say it: I like it. I’ve always liked it. Sure it can get tiresome when it’s played to death each year, but so can any other song. That said, I think I’d miss it if I didn’t hear it once or twice during the holidays. And now there’s a new version of the song that appeared online yesterday; and I think this version is even better than Sir Paul’s.
I posted a video in the last post that featured audio from some of The Beatles Christmas singles, so I thought this might be a good time to delve a bit deeper into some Beatles history that a lot of people today aren’t aware of.
Hey there! As evidence of me spending wasting a bit too much time on the internet, I’d like to share a few holiday tunes that I’ve stumbled across recently… Again, nothing mainstream here. There’s enough Mariah Carey and Buble and Bieber garbage on the radio and in the malls. You’ve got to dig a bit deeper for the good stuff. The stuff that falls between the cracks of the mainstream is so much more interesting, in my opinion.
*UPDATE 12/9/14: Jingle Bell Rocks is now available on Cable VOD, Digital & DVD!!! It’s also playing in theaters around the nation throughout December! In West Michigan, it will be screening at the Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts in Grand Rapids December 19-23!!* As I wrote about last time, I kinda have this thing about Christmas music. I love all music, and usually have it playing all day long, and the holidays are no exception. As a kid, mom always had Christmas platters spinning on the console hi-fi, and those old records burned themselves into my brain, and they remain a vital part of our holidays to this day.
The tail-end of 2014 has turned into a bit of a rough patch around here,as we are suffering from my Mom’s death in October. Getting myself into a good mood and keeping it there hasn’t exactly been easy, but I’m trying. With the holidays rapidly approaching, I find myself wondering if I’m going to find the holiday spirit at all this year. Mom was probably the main reason I love this time of the year so much, and her not being here is going to make things tough. But life goes on, and I’m going to try to persevere and not let myself get too down. Easier said than done, right?
I’m declaring my neutrality in the ongoing War on Christmas. Whether you say ‘Merry Christmas’, ‘Happy Holidays’, or simply ‘Get the Hell Off My Lawn!’ really doesn’t matter to me. This is to be a joyous season, and I hate to see it dragged into the mud by the 24-hour news media who really don’t have anything better to complain about. That said, I wish you and yours a ridiculously happy and relaxing Holiday. It’s Christmas Eve, and around here there’s lots to be done before we gather around the fire with kith and kin to celebrate. There’s gifts to be wrapped, halls to be decked, nog to be egged, all before Santa arrives late tonight… but the sun is shining on last nights’ gorgeous new snow and Bing is on the hi-fi, so all is well. We’ll see you on the flip side! Cheers