Tunes for the Holidays
I can't tell you how much I despise Christmas music. I really don't understand why there are so many versions of the same songs out there. The initial premise is that someone wrote a song to celebrate a certain holiday this time of the year, and the primary motive (other than making money, which, you must admit, is REALLY what Christmas is all about. In fact, side rant here, America's religion is not really Christianity, like so many conservatives would like you to believe, but it's money. That's right, I said it, America's national religion is Money. Now go to your banks and worship) is to get people in a festive mood.
I have to admit, in small doses, I don't mind Christmas music, despite the fact that I told you I despise it in the first sentence there. But when the same CD gets played over and over, I start looking for something to stab myself with. This really isn't just confined to Christmas music, because one time, my room mate in college played Pink Floyd's "Momentary Lapse of Reason" CD ad nauseum. Problem was, it was my CD, so what I did was I sold it to my friend down the hall for like $3. Of course, I told Banas who I sold it to, and then he went and borrowed it. I think he was doing some kind of crazy art project that kept him up for 3 days, and he just kept playing that CD over and over. Oh well, I guess it could have been worse. The dude did have a Marillion poster on the wall.
The problem with most Christmas songs (or maybe "thankfully") is that they're only good during Christmas.
So I was thinking of Christmas songs I actually like, and I came up with a short list. Unfortunately, I'm too lazy to actually download these songs to my computer and then upload them somewhere you can find them. Luckily, you can sample all of these on iTunes. Some of these are good at times other than Christmas, some are not. Here's my very short list:
4. "Under the Christmas Fish" - Didjits
As far as Didjits tunes go, this is probably a typical one, but not one of their best. Rick Sims of the Didjits and the other guys were from the Shelbyville and Mattoon, Illinois area. I mentioned this to my wife, and she's like, "So?" Yeah, I know. But still, crossing paths with minor stars is my specialty. Praise God, THE CHRISTMAS FISH!
3. "Feliz Navi-Nada" - El Vez
El Vez is the Mexican Elvis. This version is from the Happy Birthday, Baby Jesus CD. Nice distorted vocals. Pretty much any version I have heard of this song is great. For the most part, it's pretty upbeat, and I like the influence of Mexican music. There's a Mexican music station out of Chicago, and the songs are very uptempo, polka-like, and the DJs always sound like they're having a good time, even though I don't understand a word they're saying.
2. "Christmas Vacation" - Descendents
This one is from their "I Don't Wanna Grow Up" release. I think I actually like the live version from "Hallraker" better. Nice vocals on the live version, Milo doesn't sound as restrained as the studio version. I think it's either about a break-up, but for some reason I always thought it was about suicide. Good year-round tune. Christmas vacation, you took a vacation from me.
1. "Merry Christmas from the Family" - Robert Earl Keen
This is kind of a stereotypical redneck-family song, but still very enjoyable. Great character sketches, typical holiday activities (turn the ball game on, turning on the house Christmas lights), as well as lists for someone to run to the Quickpack store (tampons come up on two lists, classy). This is one of those that I can listen to year-round.
Carve the turkey, turn the ball game on
Mix margaritas when the eggnog's gone
Send somebody to the Quickpak store
We need some ice and an extenstion cord
A can of bean dip and some Diet Rites
A box of tampons and some Marlboro Lights
Halelujah, everybody say "Cheese"
Merry Christmas from the family