Saturday, December 12, 2009

Show #23 CHRISTMAS SPECTACULAR December 12, 2009

It could only be Mary this special night....

Mary Christmas- Redd Kross Santa Claus and The Power Pop Criminals
Christmas Is Coming- Payolas Christmas Is Coming 12"
Come On Christmas- Cheap Trick A Christmas Blog Gift For You
I Want An Alien For Christmas- Fountains Of Wayne Out-Of-State Plates
Christmas Time Again- Bad Manners Christmas Time Again 12"
(It's Gonna Be A) Punk Rock Christmas- The Ravers Punk Rock Christmas 7"
Christmas- Buzz Of Delight Sound Castles EP
Christmas Crush- Home Grown Santa's Got A GTO Rodney On The Roq's Fav X-Mas Songs
^Christmas Wrapping- The Waitresses A Christmas Record
Give Me A 2nd Chance For Christmas- Mike Viola and the Candy Butchers A Christmas Blog Gift For You
Santa's Beard- They Might Be Giants Holidayland
Jesus Christ- Big Star Big Star's 3rd/Sister Lovers
Just Like Christmas- Low Christmas
It's A Big Country- Davitt Sigerson A Christmas Record
*How Do You Spell Channukkah?- The LeeVees Hanukkah Rocks
*Hanukkah Girl- Metronome I Made It Out Of Clay - A Hanukkah Pop Compilation
*'Til Next Hanukkah- Velouria Santa's Got A GTO Rodney On The Roq's Fav X-Mas Songs
*Hanukkah Blessings- Barenaked Ladies Barenaked For The Holidays
Are You Ready For Christmas- Luther 'N The BBB's Are You Ready For Christmas 7"
Everyday Is Christmas- Swag A Christmas Blog Gift For You
Christmas Wish- NRBQ Christmas Wish
Christmas With The Snow- Marah A Christmas Kind of Town
Red Lights- Dreams So Real Red Lights 7"
Runaway Christmas- Pencil Test Santa's Got A GTO Rodney On The Roq's Fav X-Mas Songs
>Don't Believe In Christmas- The Sonics Don't Believe In Christmas 45
Christmas Is Cancelled (This Year)- Farrah A Christmas Blog Gift For You
Lonely Christmas- Sloppy Seconds Lonely Christmas
Jingle Bells- The Laugher A Light Christmas
Space Christmas- Shonen Knife Space Christmas 7"
It's Christmas Time Ebenezer- The Len Price 3 Santa Claus & The Power Pop Criminals
X-Mas- Epicycle Santa Claus and The Power Pop Criminals
Christmas Time- Chris Stamey Christmas Time
Merry Christmas Will Do- Material Issue A Christmas Blog Gift For You
The Christmas Wish- Kermit The Frog A Christmas Together

^Power Pop Peak: #41 UK Pop Chart December 1982

*SacroSet: Hanukkah Songs

>Power Pop Prototype: 1965

I don't remember exactly when I first starting making Christmas mix tapes for people, but it was probably close to 25 years ago. I've always loved Christmas and while I consider myself more of a "music fan" than "record collector," I have to cop to the latter when it comes to Christmas music. I like the old chestnuts like "I'll Be Home For Christmas" and "The Christmas Song," the only time I listen to KOIT, the Adult
Contemporary station in San Francisco, is during the holidays when they are playing all Christmas music. Yet, as tonight's playlist shows, it's the original Christmas songs I like best. Summer is perhaps the only other season that inspires songwriters as
much as Christmas. From "Christmas is coming, it's been a long year...." (Payola$) to "Santa get off of my girlfriend!" (Home Grown) to "That Christmas magic's brought this tale to a very happy ending" (The Waitresses), I love all the different perspectives on the holiday.

The Dickies version of "Silent Night" was an early find, but I trace my original Christmas music habit back to The Ravers' "(It's Gonna Be A) Punk Rock Christmas."  I remember Chuck Warner of Throbbing Lobster (now of playing the song on an all Christmas music show on WMBR in Cambridge.  Cousin Rich tracked it down and ordered two copies of the original 1977 45.  In 1978 Rhino re-issued it as the 12" EP pictured above. You've gotta love these lyrics:

Let's 'avit! Oi! Yeh!
It's gonna be a punk rock christmas this year,
Even Santa's gonna be a Sex Pistol for a day
All those christmas trees swinging safety pins from their leaves
It's gonna be a punk rock christmas this year

Farah Fawcett will change her hairstyle for a day,
The Queen will sing "Anarchy In The UK"
And old Mick Jagger will adopt The Strangler's swagger
Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah baby

Rick Wakeman will take up the electric guitar, ha
And Johnny Ramone will get a sled for a car,
There's a group called The Damned they say
Who play the four wise men in a play, in a play, IN A PLAY!!

(SPOKEN: Santa) What do you want for christmas, Little boy?
(Boy) I want a Damned LP with Eddie and The Hot Rods on the back,
I want a colour TV so I can kick it in I want an Ace guitar,
And a subscription to Punk Magazine!
(Santa) What else do you you want for christmas, Little boy?
(Boy) I want ten copies of "God Save The Queen" with a picture sleeve!
(Santa) With a picture sleeve?
(Santa) If you're a good little boy your wish will come true

We're gonna give ya a punk rock christmas this year
And I'm gonna give you a nice sweater all ripped to shreds,
Get mum and dad chic get them safety pins for their cheeks
It gonna be a punk rock christmas this year

Who knows what happened to The Ravers, yet we'll always have "Punk Rock Christmas." That's one of the things I love about Christmas music- its history of slipping totally random songs past the staid record industry gauntlet, whether it's "Jingle Bells" by The Singing Dogs, "The Chipmunk Song" or "Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer" by Bay Area veterinarian Dr. Elmo.

There are a lot of movies and TV shows about how stressful Christmas is for families and, especially as I get older, I see how that can be. Thanks to my parents, however, I'm happy to say that when I was a kid, Christmas was the best. Jaime and I work hard to make Christmas something special for our kids too, though it can be challenging in a lean year like this one. Our daughter Veronica even suggested we skip putting Christmas lights up this year to save money on electricity. Yet there I was last week, hanging off a ladder and walking on the roof hanging lights- it seemed even more important this time specifically because 2009 was such a hard year. My Mum is here in Sonoma now and sister Sarah came out for a visit last week so I think it's going to be another great Christmas in the Love household. I wish all of you the same- Merry Christmas!!

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