During the week of February 19th and February 24th, I reviewed six different Christmas compilations that I acquired from various friends and other Christmas music aficionados. I had no other homemade compilations to review... or so I thought.
Mike Ung, a resident of Kansas City and yet another person who I met through FaLaLaLaLa.com happened to read my reviews. He e-mailed me to ask if I would be willing to trade copies of our annual comps.
"I've always liked weird/obscure music" Mike admits. He also admitted to reworking the Beatles' White Album down to 6 tracks... That was enough for me! I agreed to send him one and off they went through the mail.
His compilation arrived exactly one week ago. I didn't know what to expect - this was Mike's 5th Christmas comp. The artwork was pretty good - I did a quick scan of the playlist... when I discovered the title of a long lost Christmas song I've been searching for, I knew I was in for a treat.
1.) The Crafty Ladies - We Wish You A Merry Xmas
Was that a Dean Martin Christmas sound bite that you started with? As for the song, it's definitely different!
2.) No artist info - Jingle Bells
This is the famous Herb Alpert sound-a-like band The Border Brass. He finishes it off with a Jayne Mansfield Christmas Countdown sound clip .... sweet!
3.) Fat Daddy - Fat Daddy
A great song from the "John Waters Christmas" album! And a groovy Batman Christmas sound bite to end it!
4.) The Christmas Jug Band - S-A-N-T-A (Gloria)
A live cover of the classic Them! song - runs around 7 minutes... Another Christmas Countdown clip... this one's fab Tab Hunter!
5.) The Hentchman - Merry Christmas Baby
A 1960 garage band doing a raw cover of Charles Brown' "Merry Christmas Baby". Nice find!
6.) Avon 45 single - Dance Of The Sugar Plum Fairy
Released as a B side in 1968 by the "Avon calling" company. Look for this single over at Ernie Not Bert's blog!
7.) Barry Gordon - I Like Christmas, I Like It, I Like It
This was first offered at FaLaLaLaLa.com during its first year of existence. I downloaded it and lost it in the Great Spring Hard Drive Crash of 2005. I finally got a copy again!
8.) The Voices - Santa Claus Baby
A fantastic R&B Christmas lament song... You can hear it on Rhino's "Blue Yule" CD!
9.) Louis Armstrong & The Commanders - 'Zat You, Santa Claus?
This is the TENTH different CD that contains this song in my collection...
10.) Canadian Quartette - Santa, Please
The group's name is just Quartette... but they are from Canada! And this was one of the first CDs I requested from Jeffco Productions up in Canada.
11.) The Wailers - Christmas Time Is Finally Here
The actual name of this song is "She's Comin' Home"... and a dandy tune from a dandy album!
12.) Fred Lowery - Silent Night
The famous Blind Whistler strikes again... check his story out here!
13.) Max Bygreaves - C*H*R*I*S*T*M*A*S
I thought I owned this song... turns out I didn't! Thanks Mike for the great tune!
14.) Paddy Roberts - Merry Christmas You Suckers
GREAT JUMPING ICEBERGS!! THIS IS THE SONG! I've been looking for this one for a long time... it's a twisted, sarcastic, irreverent Christmas song about the overindulgence of the holidays recorded in 1962! Very much like Tom Lehrer but more honest! THANKS MIKE!
15.) Heather Noel - Santa Came On A Nuclear Missle
Boy, the American Song-Poem Christmas CD sure has been popular over the last year or two!
16.) Big Bad Voodoo Daddy - Last Night (I Went Out With Santa Claus)
A swinging tune from the Daddy!
17.) Senor Tonto - Hooray For Santa Claus
Another download offered at FaLaLaLaLa.com! Very similar to Petty Booka... Batman again at the end!
18.) Joey Ramone - Christmas
A cover of the Darlene Love song so the real title is "Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)". Joey, Joey, Joey...
19.) Brenda Lee - I'm Gonna Lasso Santa Claus
Why do radio stations only play "Rockin' Around The Christmas Tree" and not this one by Brenda Lee?
20.) Roger Christian - Little Mary Christmas
Another gem from the "John Waters Christmas" CD... nothing like an orphaned disabled child at Christmas song!
21.) Run DMC - Christmas In Hollis
The penultimate Christmas rap song. I remember my friend Nate Lipscomb doing this one at a 1986 HS Christmas concert... tore it up!
22.) White Stripes - Candy Cane Children
They were really trying to sound like Led Zeppelin in this song... came awfully close!
23.) The Moog Machine - Carol Of The Bells
MOOOOOG! Sounds as fresh as the day it was recorded! Great stuff! Batman's making his rescue now!
24.) The Blind Boys Of Alabama - Go Tell It On The Mountain (featuring Tom Waits)
Not my favorite song off this album because I don't like Tom Waits... he's a caricature of his former great self.
25.) Funky Christmas - Funky Christmas (???)
Mike, this is track #5 on my CD. Artist / title = Corporal Blossom / White Christmas.
26.) Asche & Spencer - Merry Christmas Fruitcake
Read the full story on this song here ... ANYONE HAVE THE FULL CD ???
You did a fine job Mike in compiling a witty and fun Christmas comp to listen to. Keep searching out the weird and obscure and you can go a long way in impressing your friends and others.
One tip: keep developing the style of the CD as a whole. Don't be content to keep the format the same (song / sound bite at the end of the song) - shake it up, mix it up, and never be afraid to try something different. The more you do this, the more you'll find a format that's uniquely yours and ultimately comfortable for you.
Take a bow Mike... Your CD is exactly the 650th Christmas disc I now own!
650... I feel like Barry Bonds zeroing on Babe Ruth and Hank Aaron (minus the money, steroids, and attitude)!
On to the next new Christmas CD in my collection...