This odd number comp (21 to be exact) is the FINAL disc that Martin Johns created for the 2006 Christmas season and the last themed CD from his laboratory in Greenville, South Carolina.
When Martin sent his shoebox full of CDs to our P.O. Box, this comp wasn't inside. At the time, it didn't even exist.
Burning the midnight oil, he quickly assembled some of the best finds via the Christmas sharity community and assembled a brand new comp.
Martin first posted the covers of this comp at the wonderful world known as FaLaLaLaLa.com on December 20, 2006 and sent me a link that I could download for it.
I was flattered to see several of my contributions to the 2006 Christmas downloading season on the disc. Other contributors included many longtime contributors and members of FaLaLaLaLa.com (PDMan, Esstee, Trendbend, Mister Miller), The King Of Jingaling himself, Lee Hartsfield of Music You (Possibly)Won't Hear Anywhere Else, and the tireless Ernie (not Bert).
To date, I haven't posted one comp from any submission received here at the yuleblog. Considering this is the final day of the whole two month look at comps... and Martin properly gave credit where credit is due on this comp... and I'm thoroughly exhausted and not thinking straight...
JohnsCDs 2006-1172-001 - A Sleigh Full Of Joy: Sharity Rarities 2006
Click on the link to get your download. While you're waiting in line, here is more background info about this disc from Mr. Johns himself. This is the final time you'll be able to read...
2006 was my first year exploring and participating in the Sharity community. By comparison, downloading 30+ CDs of Indie music ("Santa's On The Download") now seems quaint. There was so much unbelievable Christmas music shared out at sites like FaLaLaLaLa, I don’t know how I'll ever get it all together in any sensible kind of order (CAPT'S NOTE: Join the club!).
And that, as much as anything, was the point of this one. It was a way of bookmarking some of my particular favorites from the avalanche.
Ultimately, I think it was the Music You (Possibly) Won't Hear Anyplace Else tracks that necessitated this one. The Baby Dolls' version of "The Bell That Couldn't Jingle" and Bobby Stewart's "Sing A Kris Kringle Jingle" are just such wonderful songs.
They are also songs that don't quite fit what I usually do. So the only reasonable thing to do was a comp built around them. Also, The Mike Sammes Singers just blew my mind (thank you King)! Where was that when I was growing up?
I knew that was my perfect "encore" number. On a lot of my mixes, the last track serves as either a "bonus" or an "encore"; the journey is complete... here's one for the road - kinda like this comp, itself, really.
Your own contributions, Captain, are extra special delights (though I clearly overdid the noise reduction on the Capitol Records piece - I'll work on that at some point).
Between "Christmas In July" and "The 25 Days Of Christmas", Ernie shared up some truly amazing stuff. And I threw "Dasher" in there just to show that I had contributed, too. Really, though, everyone in the Sharity community was outstanding in every way possible. I don't see how it could ever get any better than it was in 2006.
As it was a comp of "sharities", I distributed it in that form. Which is to say I uploaded it and sent the link to a select few subscribers - no rhyme or reason for which ones - just one final piece of holiday fruitcake a few days before Christmas. If I decide to make hard copies, I'll send them out next year, but, officially, I'm reserving the right to use these tracks, individually, on future comps.
1.) A 30 second reminder (to the tune of "Jingle Bells" by The Singing Mailmen of Miami) to "use zone numbers on your mail".
2.) Sounds like a forgotten Rankin-Bass tune from one of their countless Christmas specials. Lee at MY(P)WHAE also offered Bobby Stewart's version of "Nuttin For Christmas".
3.) Al Aitchson has this song on his "Al's Christmas Ale 2005" that I reviewed during last year's look at Christmas comps - Red Ryder BB Gun offered this at his blog back in January, 2006 (no longer available).
4.) During the pre-legal Napster days (2001), I downloaded this 78 promo - scratchy, burnt, and hard to listen to. For the next five years, I've searched for a clean copy of Bugs Bunny (Mel Blanc) taking a tour of Capitol Records, giving each musical department a chance to say "Merry Christmas". I found a clean copy last year, signed away my kidneys, and shared it out at FLLLL.com. Hope you like it.
5.) Is this Tomorrow's World or Claudine Longet? It's from "él Christmas - The World in Winter"... I think the sleep deprivation is catching up to me. It's very good either way.
6.) It's amazing that this great song isn't included on ANY of Johnny Mathis' Christmas collections. Ernie picked up on that and offered this during his 25 Days Of Christmas (see above).
7.) When Ernie offered this and stated it was off the "Charade" soundtrack, I made a note to pull the DVD and locate where it was used in the movie... I've yet to do it! Typical brilliance from Mancini!
8.) Esstee offered these exactly one month before James Brown died at FLLLL.com. Did you know something then that we didn't Ess? This is a great Christmas song period.
9.) Line Material was (is?) an electrical manufacturing company that used to issue fantastic Christmas records like this for a time for employees and their kids. Lee at MY(P)WHAE offered several of these mini epic 45s last year. Someone should gather these singles up for an anthology!
10.) Reggaexx at Distinctly Jamaican Sounds was searching for a long lost reggae Christmas song (this one) at FLLLL.com to add to his Christmas mixes. I found this song on "Al's Christmas Ale 2005" (see #3 above) and posted it.
11.) Rato Records first posted this back in December, 2005 but Christmas A Go Go posted this last December. Thank you Martin - I missed this dynamite, swinging 1960s Christmas twist tune sung in French twice! WOW!
12.) Another great song I missed. This one came from Bongo Bells - can't seem to find what album this came from! I really need to learn how to subscribe to RSS feeds.
13.) Ernie loves scouring old vinyl to find those separated from the pack Christmas gems. This version of "Sleigh Ride" could fit in very well with Hugo's Christmas albums neatly...but instead it came from a non-Christmas album only to be rescued and offered by the hardest working man in sharity biz - Ernie.
14.) The Four Freshmen hick it up (hiccup?). Ernie rescued this song and offered it for his "Christmas In July" celebration (see above).
15.) Hi ho Steverino! Ricky Vera & Steve Allen released this as a B-side in 1953 but Ernie found it on a 4 LP set entitled "One Hundred Favorite Songs Of Christmas (MCA Special Markets SR 8726 DXS 504)". Steve sings on this - quite the crooner!
16.) WOW! Why can't we hear this Gayla Peevey song on Christmas radio instead of "I Want A Hippopotamus For Christmas"? From Rato Records (December, 2005).
17.) PDMan offered some fine albums throughout the 2006 downloading season at FLLLL.com: Paradise Islanders, two Jan Garber albums, a Ed Sullivan Christmas album, and this one. Look for full reviews of all these albums here before the year is out.
18.) GREAT JUMPIN' ICEBERGS!!! I never knew Fudgeland existed - and they have a great Christmas comp you can get with this song on it! So many blogs and websites, so little time (feel free to use that as a title Martin). Fudge, thanks for this one!
19.) This came from one of the best finds at this past year. Stubbyfears (aka Martin) offered this entire Feather & Burns album at FLLLL.com - brilliant stuff!
20.) Another "Best Find of 2006" - click on MY(P)WHAE to read the full story of this excellent cover of the Burt Bacharach song with some British flair!
21.) If you haven't visited Anna-Lena Lodenius' amazing blog called "Jul Igen - Christmas Again", you're missing out on some of the best Swedish Christmas music out there. This is a perfect example! Thanks Anna-Lena!
22.) Trendbend had a bundle of great Christmas singles to share at FLLLL.com. This is one of the gems! Thank you Trend - I enjoyed the Goon Show!
23.) If you want the full story behind this one, read the yuleblog entry about it. This was the share I was most proud of last year.
24.) WOW! This 1975 Christmas album by Vera Lynn was posted by Mister Miller at FLLLL.com and you can expect a full review on this here soon.
25.) Another great post by Trendbend at FLLLL.com. Ernie later added this great link about the Spotnicks. I think it's a fabulous song (my contribution).
26.) FLLLL member Shesapeach posted this kiddie song which prompted Tony at Way Out Junk to post the entire album (yes, it will be reviewed here as well).
27.) GREAT JUMPIN' ICEBERGS!!! Cheezepleeze found a long lost syndicated radio special with Lorne Greene and posted the whole thing at his site. This is great for those Christmas comps for next year folks!
28.) The irrepressible Kay Martin singing the title track from her 1962 Christmas album. The Groove Grotto picked up high marks for posting this last year.
29.) This was a track I grabbed off this album in my archives for my annual 2005 Christmas CD. April Winchell posted it at her site (bless her heart). Don't ask me why but if it's Jack Webb and Christmas related, I'm right there!
30.) From the King Of Jingaling's all time favorite Christmas album - which he posted at FLLLL.com and remains one of its most popular shares!
Looking and listening to this comp captured, for a brief moment, the excitement and anticipation the 2006 downloading season brought. It was the biggest and best season on the books and at the yearly rate it keeps growing, Lord help us all in 2007. Thanks to the sharity community as a whole.
Martin, Martin, Martin... I want to thank you for not just this comp but for the entire shoebox of comps you sent once again. These past two weeks have been fun, stressful, hectic, relaxed, tiring, and so full of artist links, Christmas album links, and links, links, and links that I began seeing blue underlines when reading the morning paper, restaurant menus, even a funeral card!
I've enjoyed reading your insights, listening to your hard work, and sharing your appreciation for Christmas music in all sorts, shapes, and forms. Back in my introduction of you two weeks ago (seems like two months), I stated that I have met my match in passion for Christmas music. I can now unequivocally say that you have surpassed me in that regard. Congratulations and thanks again Martin.
The journey of a thousand miles ends with a single tired step. And so it ends.
UP NEXT: April 2007