Usually I get a little more than a little cynical during the holiday season. Can't tell you for certain, but it probably has something to do with a long retail career where the mood gets smothered in the drive to make sales quotas. You probably know what I'm talking about, the type of attitude that had me humming this....
....from the last week in November until mid January, when retailers are pretty much done with the ghost of Christmas presents.
Not this year, though. I don't know if it was the snow....it's coming down as I write this....or what, but even the miserable holiday music played over store music systems hasn't crushed my spirit. Dented it a little maybe, but it's still there.
So to that end, I leafed through You Tube and found some of my favorite holiday songs. I may have posted some of these in years past, but at least a couple are new.
Like this. I caught it on a music system a couple of days ago. The group is called Holiday Express, and they've done a great disco takeoff on "Macho Man" and "YMCA"
Mike, if you're looking at this, can you place the East Lansing, MI locations?
Then there's this little gem. It's a takeoff on the old Chordettes song "Mr. Sandman", written by Pat Ballard, who wrote "Sandman", it was recorded by Shari Lewis (without Lamb Chop) in 1965, and Amy Grant has a version, but I think Suzy Bogguss comes closest of the Chordettes original. Amy's is overproduced, and I really like the Chet Atkins style guitar in this version.
There is a You Tube video of Chet and Suzy doing this. Alas the audio isn't very clear. But no matter. Ricky Skaggs covers the guitar part excellently.
One song that has shown up on music systems is probably the worlds worst cover. The song is "Santa Baby", and who ever is singing it is trying real hard to be coy and "cute". Bag it, girl, you're competing with a master of coy when it comes to song. THIS is the way this song should be sung.
Hey, if I were Santa, she would have gotten the Sable, the convertable, the whole nine yards. But I digress.
Then there's this Lou Baxter/Johnny Moore penned chestnut. It's actually Johnny Moore's Three Blazers, but the song has been so heavely tied to The Blazers' lead singer, it's effectively become his song. A great tune from 1947.
As a closer, there's probably my second favorite Christmas song (after Mel Torme's "a Christmas Song"). It's hard to realise that "A Charlie Brown Christmas" is 47 years old, but it is. Released in 1965, my senior year in high school (sigh....), Vince Guaraldi's standard has stood the test of time. And as much as I like the kids singing it, the original version is great for a cool, snowy evening.
So that's it. This year's collection of holiday tunes I like. Be of good cheer. If not, this might show up at your doorstep.