Happy New Year To Powerpop Readers!

I want to thank everyone who has read my blog this year and the last few years. I ran this last year and I’ve added many more names! It’s so much fun communicating with all of you. I’ve been told my blog is a place people come to comment like sitting around a campfire. That is the way I hope it is. I’m not a real writer so I just write as if I’m talking to you in a room.

I started this blog in September 2017 and I have learned a lot from reading your blogs and interacting with you all. It was cool to find fellow Big Star, Beatles, Who, Twilight Zone, Baseball, Jazz, Classical, Power Pop, Rock, Hard Rock, Folk, Old Country, Surf, Classic TV, Classic Movie, the 1970s, fans…. and everything in between.

In 2016 I would not have believed I would be communicating with people in different states across America plus the world…such as New Zealand, The UK, Hong Kong, Germany, Columbia, Australia, India, France, Sweden, Spain, and more! I’m also learning more about new music, old new music, cool old and new movies, and most of all…people. I probably comment too much at times but it’s a lot of fun learning.

I was hesitant to do this post because I know I will miss someone …if I did… it wasn’t on purpose.

I’ve commented with you all, emailed many of you, talked to some of you over the phone, and met one of you. Thank you all once again.

I didn’t know where New Zealand was until I started to talk to Bruce,  Graham, and Obbverse…after talking to them I would love to visit there. They also leave some of the best comments of anyone.

I’ve learned about Australia and Columbia…and classical music from Matt

A fellow Big Star and mid-60s pop/rock fan! Obbverse

I’ve even listened to Heavy Metal and Canadian bands from Canadians Deke and Dave and became friends with both.

I’ve read great stories and read poems for really the first time from Lisa and Bruce. I still don’t know much about them but I’m learning.

Learned about new music from Jeff, Graham, and Christian.

Learned even more about the Beatles and music from Hanspostcard

Learned even more about baseball from Hanspostcard, John,  and Dave

Looked at sewing machines as works of art with run-sew-read and learned more about The Moody Blues, books, and movies.

Learned a whole lot about the Grateful Dead and music from Jim

My guide to 80’s alternative bands from Paul and Dave

Learned so much about movies from Bernie… a great movie reviewer and person.

Fellow Twilight Zone fan Beth

the press music reviewsexcellent top-notch posts on music and I love the alternate album covers you present.

I’ve started to comment a lot with walkingoffthechessboard

Getting to know Paul and Colin at onceuponatime70s … with that title how could I not like them?

Loudhorizon where I find rare bands of the 60s and 70s.

Commenting with Under The Mask

Vinyl Connection for all the info on albums that I love and music in general.

Monday songs from Eden make my Mondays better.

Recently commenting with halffastcyclingclub

Liam…another great blogger I met through our TV Draft last year.

I’ve had a good time commenting about music with princecranoir

How radio really works and more about family from Keith… Keith

Learning every number 1 from the UK with Stewart

I’m learning a lot about cover versions from randydafoe

About life and friendship from my friend Vic,

Wonderful life stories from Mitch,

Album reviews from 2loud2oldmusic and Graham

Learned about Chicago and interesting music from fan and fellow musician John 

One of my favorite blogs from Mojo Horizon

Restaurants to eat at from Blaine. I want to make it down to Louisana so I can try these wonderful restaurants that he recommends.

Detailed history from Rick

MobsterTiger who is kind enough to re-blog some of my posts.

Kingclover who I’ve got to know more about this year talking about music.

Cooking and Saint Bernards from Jeanne

Inspiring writing from Pam

Writing and an author… Steve Campbell

Movies from Master Mix Movies

Off-the-radar songs and movies, and everything cool from Cincinnati  Babyhead (CB)

ALWAYS cool music from Hotfox63

Some of the most entertaining  true stories I’ve ever heard from Phil Strawn

I got to know Paula Light from our TV Show draft.

Great posts and one of my first followers…and fellow Monkee fan Blackwing

Nashville music history from my cousin Ricky

Comics from Harry Chamberlain

Learning about all the places that usfman travels

Stories from James

Just recently commenting with Dana at Regular Girl Devos

Awesome Cartoons from Hobo Cartoons

Sheree for dropping by my site every day.

The writing of Jason 

Fellow power pop fan Mike and fellow Nashvillian.

Great posts from Mark

Again if I missed anyone I’m sorry…I just ran through this off the top of my head.

Thanks to everyone and have a Happy New Year to you and your family from Powerpop.blog (and it’s curator…Max). We survived 2020, 2021 and 2022…lets make this one better!



Zombies – This Will Be Our Year

This is usually my first post in the New Year. I love tradition so here we are again!

Next to Auld Lang Syne this is my favorite New Years’ Song. A favorite of mine from one of my favorite bands. Everyone… I wish you a Happy New Year in 2023.

You didn’t have to read my blog but you did and I really appreciate it…I want to thank all of you for reading and commenting in 2022.

This song sounds like it should have been a hit but it was never pushed as a single at the time. It was the B side to Butcher’s Tale  (Western Front 1914) which is an experimental song and was a big surprise to the band that it was picked as the first single. Both are from the great album Odessey and Oracle in 1968. There are several songs on this album that could have been in the charts but Time of the Season was the only one that made it and it was a year after the album was released.

Bruce Eder of AllMusic gave the album five stars out of five, calling it “one of the flukiest (and best) albums of the 1960s, and one of the most enduring long-players to come out of the entire British psychedelic boom”.

On recording Odessey and Oracle…Rod Argent:

“We had the chance of going in and putting things down in the way we wanted people to hear them and we had a new studio, we walked in just after The Beatles had walked out [after recording Sgt. Pepper]. We were the next band in. They’d left some of their instruments behind … I used John Lennon’s Mellotron, that’s why it’s all over Odessey and Oracle. We used some of their technological advances … we were using seven tracks, and that meant we could overdub for the first time. And it meant that when I played the piano part I could then overdub a Mellotron part, and it meant we could have a fuller sound on some of the songs and it means that at the moment the tour we’re doing with Odessey and Oracle it means we’re actually reproducing every note on the original record by having extra player with us as well.”

This Will Be A Year

The warmth of your love
Is like the warmth of the sun
And this will be our year
Took a long time to come

Don’t let go of my hand 
Now darkness has gone
And this will be our year 
Took a long time to come

And I won’t forget 
The way you held me up when I was down
And I won’t forget the way you said, 
“Darling I love you”
You gave me faith to go on

Now we’re there and we’ve only just begun
This will be our year
Took a long time to come

The warmth of your smile
Smile for me, little one
And this will be our year
Took a long time to come

You don’t have to worry
All your worried days are gone
This will be our year
Took a long time to come

And I won’t forget 
The way you held me up when I was down
And I won’t forget the way you said, 
“Darling I love you”
You gave me faith to go on

Now we’re there and we’ve only just begun
And this will be our year
Took a long time to come

Yeah we only just begun
Yeah this will be our year
Took a long time to come

Jackson 5 – Santa Claus is Coming to Town

Merry Christmas to the entire WordPress world. This is a great community we have going on and I hope everyone has a beautiful day today.

I just heard the  Jackson 5 version again yesterday. I need to write the Bruce version up…I never have since I’ve been blogging which is dumb.

I’ve never been a huge Michael Jackson fan except with the Jackson 5. He was immensely talented and had some great-selling albums. Maybe it was just being burned out hearing him.. The Jackson 5 though I really liked and still do. I thought they had some great pop/soul/bubblegum singles in the early to mid-seventies.

This version was released in 1970 and it peaked at #46 in the Billboard 100 and came off the Jackson 5 Christmas Album album. The album peaked at #53 on the Billboard Album Charts and #45 in Canada.

According to Wiki: The album spent four weeks at the number one position on Billboard magazine’s special Christmas Albums chart that the magazine published in December 1970, making it the best-selling Christmas album of that year and also of the year 1972 in the United States.

According to a Top 30 list released by the performance rights organization ASCAP in December 2014, this is the most-performed holiday song of all time. “The Christmas Song (Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire)” was ranked second and “White Christmas” third.

This was written in 1932 by Haven Gillespie and J. Fred Coots. They had trouble convincing anyone to produce it because it was seen as a kids’ song, which would have been very hard to sell. The big break came when Eddie Cantor sang it on his radio show in 1934, and the song became an instant hit. Coots was a writer for Cantor’s show and pushed for the host to perform it. Cantor was going to pass on the song but was convinced by his wife, Ida, to give it a try.

One of the most successful Christmas carols of all time, this was outsold only by “Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer” and “White Christmas.”

Santa Clause Is Coming To Town

Santa Claus is comin’ to town
Santa Claus is comin’ to town

You better watch out
You better not cry
You better not pout
I’m telling you why

Santa Claus is comin’ to town
Santa Claus is comin’ to town
Santa Claus is comin’ to town

He is making a list
And checking it twice
Gonna find out who’s naughty and nice

Santa Claus is comin’ to town, oh yeah
Santa Claus is comin’ to town
Santa Claus is comin’ to town

He sees you when you’re sleeping
He knows when you’re awake
He knows if you’ve been bad or good
So be good for goodness sake

Oh, you d better watch out
You better not cry
Better not pout
I’m telling you why

Oh, Santa Claus is comin’ to town, oh yeah
Santa Claus is comin’ to town
Santa Claus is comin’ to town, woo hoo

Woo hoo
Woo hoo
Santa Claus is comin’ to town
Santa Claus is comin’ to town
Santa Claus is comin’ to town

Little tin horns
And little toy drums
And rump-a-tum-tums
Curly-haired dolls
That tootle and coo
Elephants, boats and kiddie cars too

Oh, Santa Claus is comin’ to town, oh yeah
Santa Claus is comin’ to town
Santa Claus is comin’ to town

One more time now

Santa Claus is comin’ to town, oh yeah
Santa Claus is comin’ to town
Santa Claus is comin’ to town

Bing Crosby – Silent Night

Merry Christmas Everyone!!! Thank you all for tuning in all year…I really appreciate it. 

This song is not only my favorite Christmas Carol… I think it’s up there with the best songs ever written. I hope everyone has a great Christmas/Holiday.

There are over 733 different versions of “Silent Night” in the last 36 years…not counting the years before that. 

Halfway through December 1818, the church organ in St. Nicholas in Oberndorf, 11 miles north of Salzburg in what is now Austria, broke (a popular version of the story claims that mice had eaten out the bellows). The curate, 26-year-old Josef Mohr, realized it couldn’t be repaired in time to provide music on Christmas Eve. He told his troubles to his friend, a headmaster and amateur composer named Franz Gruber, while giving him as a present a poem he had written two years earlier. Gruber was so taken by the rhythm of the poem that he set it to music, and on Christmas Eve there was music after all. Mohr played his guitar while the pair sang the song. It was the first public performance of “Stille Nacht” or as we know it “Silent Night.”

It is believed that Silent Night has been translated into over 300 languages around the world, and it is one of the most popular carols of all time.

From Songfacts

Bing Crosby’s version became his best-seller of the 1930s.

Music licensing company PPL announced in December 2010 that this carol tops the list of Britain’s “most recorded Christmas song of all time.” Said Mike Dalby, Lead Reporting Analyst at PPL: “Silent Night is a beautiful carol which encapsulates the feeling of Christmas entirely. Everyone from punk band The Dickies right through to Sinead O’Connor has recorded it, which exemplifies just how much it resonates with all different types of artists.”

According to PPL, Sinead O’Connor’s 1991 recording was the most popular version of the carol in Britain.

When the organ builder finally did show up to repair the St. Nicholas organ, he was given a copy of the “Silent Night” composition and brought it home. From there, traveling folk singers got a hold of it and began incorporating the carol into their repertoire. It didn’t make its way to America until 1839.

As the song gained traction throughout Europe, Franz Gruber composed several different orchestral arrangements. He donated all profits from the carol to local charities for children and the elderly, and eventually died penniless.

According to Steve Sullivan’s Encyclopedia of Great Popular Song Recordings, Crosby, a devout Catholic, refused to record the religious song, arguing it would be “like cashing in on the church or the Bible.” Crosby met with Father Richard Ranaghan, a priest trying to raise money for overseas missions, and decided to donate the royalties to the cause. But Ranaghan died in a car accident later that year, so the money went to several charities throughout the US and abroad.

This song lends itself to interpretation because the first four bars are all on the same chord. Jim Brickman explains: “There’s room to treat it dynamically in a different way: in the tempo, in the sounds and silences, in the time signature.”

Silent Night

Silent night, holy night.
All is calm, all is bright.
‘Round yon virgin mother and child.
Holy infant so tender and mild.
Sleep in heavenly peace,
Sleep in heavenly peace.

Silent night, holy night.
All is calm, all is bright.
‘Round yon virgin mother and child.
Holy infant so tender and mild.
Sleep in heavenly peace,
Sleep in heavenly peace.

Paul McCartney – Wonderful Christmastime

I hope all of you are having a wonderful Christmas Eve. I looked back and I’ve never posted this song before. It’s never been my favorite Christmas song but it has grown on me through the years.

This song was recorded during the sessions for the McCartney II album which featured Coming Up. Paul went to his farm and laid down all the tracks himself. He was experimenting with an early synthesizer called a Sequential Circuits Prophet-5, which was also used on Kim Carnes’ “Bette Davis Eyes” and the Doobie Brothers’ “What a Fool Believes.”

Released as a single, it peaked at #6 in the UK, #39 in Canada, and #28 in the Billboard 100 in 1979. It took him just ten minutes to write the song.

Although the members of Wings do not feature on the song, they do appear in the song’s music video, which was filmed at the Fountain Inn in Ashurst, West Sussex. McCartney recalled to NME in 2012… “We went out to some pub somewhere, and so that was a laugh… we just run out of the pub occasionally, filmed a bit, and then went back into the pub. So that was quite a nice evening!”

Diana Ross, Demi Lovato, Kelly Rowland, Hanson and The Monkees have all made their own versions.

The Monkees did a stripped down version of this song without the synth that is really good.

Here is the Monkees version in 2018

Wonderful Christmastime

The moon is right
The spirits up
We’re here tonight
And that’s enough
Simply having a wonderful Christmastime
Simply having a wonderful Christmastime

The party’s on
The feelin’s here
That only comes
This time of year

Simply having a wonderful Christmastime
Simply having a wonderful Christmastime

The choir of children sing their song
Ding dong, ding dong
Ding dong, ding ooo
Ooo ooo toot toot toot toot toot toot

We’re simply having a wonderful Christmastime
Simply having a wonderful Christmastime

The word is out
About the town
To lift a glass
Ah don’t look down

Simply having a wonderful Christmastime

The choir of children sing their song
They practiced all year long
Ding dong, ding dong
Ding dong, ding dong
Ding dong, ding dong, dong, dong, dong, dong

The party’s on
The spirits up
We’re here tonight
And that’s enough

Simply having a wonderful Christmastime
We’re simply having a wonderful Christmastime

The moon is right
The spirits up
We’re here tonight
Oh and that’s enough

We’re simply having a wonderful Christmastime
Simply having a wonderful Christmastime
Simply having a wonderful Christmastime

Oh oh

Beatles – Christmas Time Is Here Again

It’s that time of year…and this is one-holiday song that is on my list and not worn out. I first heard this in 1994 when I bought the Beatles Anthology album. I never knew of this song before. this song was never officially released until it appeared as the B-side to “Free As A Bird” in 1994. I’ve posted it every year since I’ve blogged and will continue to do so…it’s repetitive butI like it…it drives home the point.

My friend Dave posted this song last year and he has more info than I do so check it out.

The song is credited to Lennon-McCartney-Harrison-Starkey. The original version was distributed to The Beatles fan club in 1967. It’s the only song ever written specifically for the Beatles Fan Club members. Along with the Beatles…actor Victor Spinetti and roadie Mal Evans were on the recording.

Between December 1963 to December 1969, sent out 7 flexi discs that had  spoken and musical messages to their official fan clubs in the UK and the US at Christmas time.

The Beatles recorded this in 1967 and wasn’t released until 1994 paired with “Free As A Bird”. It is a fun Christmas song that will stick in your head. The Beatles did not release a Christmas song commercially… only to their fan club when they were active.

Many performers of this era like The Beach Boys and The Four Seasons released Christmas songs, but The Beatles never had an official Christmas release.

Christmas time is here again

Christmas time is here again
Christmas time is here again
Christmas time is here again
Christmas time is here again

Ain’t been round since you know when
Christmas time is here again
O-U-T spells “out”

Christmas time is here again
Christmas time is here again
Christmas time is here again
Christmas time is here again

Ain’t been round since you know when
Christmas time is here again
O-U-T spells “out”

Christmas time is here again
Christmas time is here again
Christmas time is here again
Christmas time is here again

Ain’t been round since you know when
Christmas time…[music continues and fades to background]


This is Paul McCartney here, I’d just like to wish you everything you wish yourself for Christmas.

This is John Lennon saying on behalf of the Beatles, have a very Happy Christmas and a good New Year.

George Harrison speaking. I’d like to take this opportunity to wish you a very Merry Christmas, listeners everywhere.

This is Ringo Starr and I’d just like to say Merry Christmas and a really Happy New Year to all listeners

[a John Lennon pastiche at this point, very hard to understand]

Vince Guaraldi Trio – Linus and Lucy

Good morning everyone! I woke up to snow this morning…and it’s a toasty -4 near Nashville where I live. …It’s hard to resist this song. It automatically makes me happy when I hear it. I see the Peanuts gang doing their thing.

Peanuts GIFs - Get the best GIF on GIPHY

This song I can hear anytime of the year and be happy. It’s associated with Christmas also…whichever… I never get tired of it.

Here is another post of the song in Hanspostcard’s song draft a few years ago when run-sew-read’s pick was this song.

Ironically, just about everyone would call this “the Charlie Brown song” even though it’s actually titled after Linus and Lucy Van Pelt, brother and sister in Charles Schulz’s Peanuts comic strip universe.

The song is most famous for its use in the yearly favorite A Charlie Brown Christmas, which first aired in 1965, but it was written two years earlier for a documentary about Schulz and the Peanuts gang called A Boy Named Charlie Brown, which never aired.

Producer Lee Mendelson was in charge of the documentary and asked Vince Guaraldi to compose music for it

Guaraldi was huge in the jazz world and won the 1962 Grammy for Best Original Jazz Composition for “Cast Your Fate To The Wind” for his group, the Vince Guaraldi Trio. Mendelson was searching for what kind of music to play for the documentary when he took a taxi cab and “Cast Your Fate To The Wind” was playing as he crossed the Golden Gate bridge. He loved it and his decision was made.

Guaraldi wrote a series of songs for the project, including “Linus and Lucy,” which he recorded with his group, the Vince Guaraldi Trio. Even though A Boy Named Charlie Brown was shelved, the soundtrack was released in 1964, which is where “Linus and Lucy” first appeared.

In 1965, Mendelson put together the first Peanuts TV special, A Charlie Brown Christmas, using many of the same people who worked on the documentary. “Linus and Lucy” formed the score, and a song he wrote with Guaraldi called “Christmas Time Is Here” was included in a key scene.

When A Charlie Brown Christmas debuted in 1965, it quickly turned the Peanuts franchise into a television institution. That first special also shot Guaraldi to greater fame, and he became connected to all subsequent Peanuts shows.

Guaraldi would continue to work on Peanuts films until his death in 1976.


No words…just enjoy

How The Grinch Stole Christmas

You’re a mean one…Mr. Grinch. I first posted this in 2018…It’s not Christmas without the Grinch…

The cartoon was released in 1966 and has been shown every year since. This one along with Rudolph, Charlie Brown, and a few more were a part of Christmas. These specials would prime you for the big day.

One cool thing about the cartoon was that Boris Karloff was the narrator. Thurl Ravenscroft (voice of Tony the Tiger) sang the great song “You’re a Mean One Mr. Grinch. ”

The citizens of Whoville looked and acted like the others of Dr. Suess’s universe. They were all getting ready for Christmas while a certain someone…or thing looked down from Mt. Crumpit. The Grinch has hated Christmas for years and sees the Whovillians getting ready for Christmas and is determined once and for all to put an end to it.

He dresses up as Santa Clause and makes his poor dog Max act as a reindeer to swoop down and steal Christmas. The Grinch sleds down the hill almost killing Max and they soon reach Whoville. He is busted by one kid…Cindy Lou Who, who asks him questions as the Grinch took her family tree. He lies to her and sends her to bed.

In the morning after he has everything including “The Roast Beast,” he listens for the sorrow to begin.

You need to watch the rest or rewatch…

A live-action remake came out in 2000 but I still like this one the best. You cannot replicate Boris Karloff.

The Budget – Coming in at over $300,000, or $2.2 million in today’s dollars, the special’s budget was unheard of at the time for a 26-minute cartoon adaptation. For comparison’s sake, A Charlie Brown Christmas’s budget was reported as $96,000, or roughly $722,000 today (and this was after production had gone $20,000 over the original budget).

You’re a mean one Mr. Grinch The famous voice actor and singer, best known for providing the voice of Kellogg’s Tony the Tiger, wasn’t recognized for his work in How the Grinch Stole Christmas. Because of this, most viewers wrongly assumed that the narrator of the special, Boris Karloff, also sang the piece in question. Upset by this oversight, Geisel personally apologized to Ravenscroft and vowed to make amends. Geisel went on to pen a letter, urging all the major columnists that he knew to help him rectify the mistake by issuing a notice of correction in their publications.

Mr Grinch

You’re a mean one, Mr. Grinch
You really are a heel
You’re as cuddly as a cactus
You’re as charming as an eel
Mr. Grinch
You’re a bad banana with a greasy black peel
You’re a monster, Mr. Grinch
Your heart’s an empty hole
Your brain is full of spiders
You’ve got garlic in your soul, Mr Grinch
I wouldn’t touch you with a
Thirty-nine and a half foot pole

You’re a vile one, Mr. Grinch
You have termites in your smile
You have all the tender sweetness of a seasick crocodile
Mr Grinch
Given the choice between the two of you
I’d take the seasick crocodile

You’re a foul one, Mr. Grinch
You’re a nasty wasty skunk
Your heart is full of unwashed socks
Your soul is full of gunk
Mr Grinch

The three best words that best describe you
Are as follows, and I quote”

You’re a rotter Mr Grinch
You’re the king of sinful sots
Your heart’s a dead tomato splotched with moldy purple spots
Mr Grinch

Your soul is an appalling dump heap
Overflowing with the most disgraceful
Assortment of deplorable rubbish imaginable
Mangled up in tangled up knots

You nauseate me, Mr Grinch
With a nauseous super nos
You’re a crooked jerky jockey and
You drive a crooked horse
Mr Grinch

You’re a three-decker sauerkraut
And toadstool sandwich
With arsenic sauce


A Christmas Carol (1951)

I watched this movie last week. It gets me in the mood for Christmas. Alastair Sim is such a pleasure to watch and he is the reason that this is my favorite interpretation of  A Christmas Carol.

There have been many versions of this great story. This is the version that I like the most. The great Alastair Sim plays Ebenezer Scrooge and he is the reason I like this so much. When I think of Scrooge… I think of him.

The movie is in black and white which turns some people off but it makes it that much better to me. They do have a color version but trust me…watch the black-and-white version. It gives the movie a darker feeling.

The effects they use are obviously not CGI but they get the point across well and serve the story. I like the scene where the ghost of Jacob Marley is warning Ebenezer of being greedy…the two were not on the set at the same time…it looked really good for being 1951…or anytime for that matter.

So get some eggnog or hot butter rum and sit back and watch this great movie.

From IMDB…spoilers

Ebenezer Scrooge (Alastair Sim) is a greedy businessman who thinks only of making money. For him, Christmas is, in his own words, a humbug. It has been seven years since his friend and partner, Jacob Marley (Sir Michael Hordern), died and on Christmas Eve. Marley’s ghost tells him he is to be visited during the night by three spirits. The Ghost of Christmas Past (Michael Dolan) revisits some of the main events in Scrooge’s life to date, including his unhappy childhood, his happy apprenticeship to Mr. Fezziwig (Roddy Hughes), who cared for his employees, and the end of his engagement to a pretty young woman due to a growing love of money. The Ghost of Christmas Present (Francis De Wolff) shows him how joyously is nephew Fred (Brian Worth) and his clerk, Bob Cratchit (Mervyn Johns), celebrate Christmas with those they love. The Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come (Czeslaw Konarski) shows him what he will leave behind after he is gone. Scrooge awakens on Christmas morning, a new man intent on doing good and celebrating the season with all of those around him.


  • Alastair Sim (Ebenezer Scrooge)
  • Kathleen Harrison (Mrs. Dilber)
  • Mervyn Johns (Bob Cratchit)
  • Hermione Baddeley (Mrs. Cratchit)
  • Michael Hordern (Jacob Marley)
  • Glyn Dearman (Tiny Tim)

Chuck Berry – Run Rudolph Run

Nice little Christmas song by Chuck Berry… the father of Rock and Roll.  The song has a “Carol” vibe to it and that is never a bad thing.  It was one of the first rock and roll Christmas songs and it was released in 1958.

Berry based this song on “Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer,” giving Rudolph a bit of an attitude as he delivers the toys. The song is credited to Johnny Marks and Marvin Brodie. Johnny Marks wrote Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer.  Chuck puts his stamp on this song. 

The song is sometimes known as “Run Run Rudolph,” which is how it appears on some other covers. Other artists to record the song include Sheryl Crow, Bryan Adams, The Grateful Dead, Jimmy Buffett, Dwight Yoakam, Bon Jovi, and Keith Richards.

The song peaked at #69 in the Billboard 100 in 1958 and has re-charted many times through the years…it peaked at #36 in the Billboard 100 in January of 2020…and I’m sure it is charting now.

The song appeared in a lot of films including Home Alone, Diner, The Santa Clause 2, Cast Away, and Jingle All the Way.

Run Rudolph Run

Out of all the reindeers you know you’re the mastermind
Run, run Rudolph, Randalph ain’t too far behind
Run, run Rudolph, Santa’s got to make it to town
Santa make him hurry, tell him he can take the freeway down
Run, run Rudolph ’cause I’m reelin’ like a merry-go-round

Said Santa to a boy child what have you been longing for?
All I want for Christmas is a rock and roll electric guitar
And then away went Rudolph a whizzing like a shooting star
Run, run Rudolph, Santa’s got to make it to town
Santa make him hurry, tell him he can take the freeway down
Run, run Rudolph, reeling like a merry-go-round

Run, run Rudolph, Santa’s got to make it to town
Santa make him hurry, tell him he can take the freeway down
Run, run Rudolph, reeling like a merry-go-round

Said Santa to a girl child what would please you most to get?
A little baby doll that can cry, sleep, drink and wet
And then away went Rudolph a whizzing like a Saber jet
Run, run Rudolph, Santa’s got to make it to town
Santa make him hurry, tell him he can take the freeway down
Run, run Rudolph ’cause I’m reelin’ like a merry-go-round

Frosty The Snowman

I apologize for so many posts today…this one I scheduled wrong…

Most of us had favorite Christmas specials we would watch as kids. Mine was Rudolph, A Charlie Brown Christmas, The Grinch, and this one…Frosty The Snowman. These four would get me primed and ready for Christmas…like I needed anything else.

“Frosty the Snowman,” debuted in 1969. It was by Rankin/Bass Productions, the same company that produced many holiday specials.

Narrated by the legend Jimmy Durante, the special involves a magic hat that transforms a snowman, Frosty, into a living being. The magician who owned the hat wants it back now that he knows it contained actual magic, so the kids had to get together and find a way to bring Frosty to the North Pole to keep him from melting. However, once there, Frosty sacrifices himself to warm up the little girl, Karen, who took him to the North Pole. He melts, but Santa Claus explains that Frosty is made out of special Christmas snow and thus can never truly melt. Frosty then comes back to life and everyone has a Merry Christmas.

The song was written in 1950 by Walter “Jack” Rollins and Steve Nelson. They wrote it for Gene Autry, especially, after Autry had such a huge hit with “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” the previous year. It was later recorded by Jimmy Durante as we hear in this wonderful cartoon.

This wasn’t the only animation of Frosty…

In 1954, United Productions of America (UPA) brought Frosty to life in a short cartoon that is little more than an animated music video for a jazzy version of the song. It introduced the characters mentioned in the lyrics visually, from Frosty himself to the traffic cop. The three-minute, black-and-white piece quickly became a holiday tradition in various markets, particularly in Chicago, where it’s been broadcast annually on WGN since 1955.

The Pretenders – 2000 Miles

Good morning everyone! I think you will like this wonderful Christmas song.

The guitar in this song is haunting…and for good reason.

This song is actually Hynde’s tribute to guitarist and founding band member James Honeyman-Scott, who died of a drug overdose in 1982 at the age of 25. In 1982, two days after lead singer Chrissie Hynde fired bassist Pete Farndon for drug abuse, the guitarist died of cocaine-induced heart failure. He was only 25 years old. Farndon himself passed away the following year.

“2000 Miles” was released as a single in December of 1983 and appeared as the 10th track of The Pretenders’ Learning to Crawl album. The single was popular in the UK, where it peaked at #15 on the UK Singles Chart. Learning to Crawl peaked at #5 in the  Billboard 200 albums chart.

In 2014, while finishing up her album Stockholm, Hynde collaborated with Bjorn Yttling on an updated version of “2000 Miles. It was released as a Christmas single in the UK that December.

Lisa covered this one a few days ago on Tao Talk.

2000 Miles

He’s gone two thousand miles
It’s very far
The snow is falling down
Gets colder day by day
I miss you The children will sing
He’ll be back at Christmas timeIn these frozen and silent nights
Sometimes in a dream you appear
Outside under the purple sky
Diamonds in the snow sparkle
Our hearts were singing
It felt like Christmas timeTwo thousand miles
Is very far through the snow
I’ll think of you
Wherever you go

He’s gone two thousand miles
It’s very far
The snow is falling down
Gets colder day by day
I miss you

I can hear people singing
It must be Christmas time
I hear people singing
It must be Christmas time

A Charlie Brown Christmas

I watched this last night…gearing up for Christmas…it’s not Christmas without The Peanuts and watching them all dance to “Linus and Lucy.”

The Peanuts were my favorite cartoon growing up and I would never miss their Thanksgiving, Halloween, and Christmas specials. Everyone can relate to Charlie Brown because we all lose more than we win in life. He doesn’t get to kick that football, his dog has more things than he does, and he is forever trying to get the elusive little redhead girl to notice him.

The Peanuts inhabit a kids world where grownups are felt but not heard. At least not in English. I’ve said this before but… Charlie Brown, one day when you grow up… I hope you end up with the little red head girl that you like so much and win just for once…for all of us.

Little Red-Haired Girl | Charlie brown characters, Charlie brown and  snoopy, Charlie brown cartoon

This 1965 special has everything good about them in one show.

The gang is skating and Charlie Brown is telling Linus that despite Christmas being a happy time he is depressed. Linus tells Charlie that is normal and Lucy pipes in with “Of all the Charlie Browns in the world, you’re the Charlie Browniest.” That sums it all up.

Charlie gets to direct the Christmas play and his main job was to get a spectacular Christmas tree under Lucy’s orders. …He picks the only real tree there…more like a branch but he is sure it will do the job. Most of the gang do not agree when he comes back with the tree but Charlie persists. Linus gets up and reads from the Bible and the inflection he lends to the reading is great.

After that, you will need to watch because it will be worth it.

Aluminum Christmas trees were marketed beginning in 1958 and enjoyed fairly strong sales by eliminating pesky needles and tree sap. But the annual airings of A Charlie Brown Christmas swayed public thinking: In the special, Charlie Brown refuses to get a fake tree. Viewers began to do the same, and the product was virtually phased out by 1969. The leftovers are now collector’s items.

Actors and Actresses The early Peanuts specials made use of both untrained kids and professional actors: Peter Robbins (Charlie Brown) and Christopher Shea (Linus) were working child performers, while the rest of the cast consisted of “regular” kids coached by Melendez in the studio. When Schulz told Melendez that Snoopy couldn’t have any lines in the show—he’s a dog, and Schulz’s dogs didn’t talk—the animator decided to bark and chuff into a microphone himself, then speed up the recording to give it a more emotive quality.

Love the Christmas Dance.

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer

Merry Christmas everyone! We will have some of the family over and we all celebrate. My nephew has three children and one is only 3 years old so we will have a good time. This year my son is at home…he traveled last year to Germany to see his girlfriend. This year Maria and Bailey will be here so I’m looking forward to it.

Watching Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer every year is the same as setting up the tree. Every year I would look forward to seeing this along with the others but what a fantastic durable show this has been. When I hear Burl Ives in anything…I think of him as the narrator Sam the Snowman of this program.

I’ve marked out some time to watch this tonight during our Christmas Eve party.

The characters are wonderful. Well except those other young reindeer who really come down on Rudolph when his nose lights up.

Hermey the elf who wants to be a dentist
Clarice – The reindeer who likes Rudolph just as he is red nose and all.
Yukon Cornelius the prospector who loves silver and gold and has a tongue that can find his silver and gold.
Abominable Snowman – The bad guy of the show who only needs a dentist to make him a good guy.
Head Elf – He leans on Hermey to get his elf self-act together and discourages him from being a dentist…I never liked him too much.

Throughout the special, Yukon Cornelius is seen throwing his pickaxe into the ground, taking it out, and licking it. It turns out that he is checking for neither gold nor silver; Yukon was actually searching for an elusive peppermint mine. In a scene right at the end of the special’s original broadcast, deleted the next year to make room for the Misfit Toys’ new scene, Cornelius pulled his pick from the ground, licked it, and said, “Peppermint! What I’ve been searching for all my life! I’ve struck it rich! I’ve got me a peppermint mine! Wahoo!” The scene was restored in 1998 and has been reinstated in all the subsequent home video release except for the 2004 DVD release. However, this scene is still cut from recent televised airings.

The Island of Misplaced Toys got to me when I was a kid. I really felt sorry for these lonely toys. King Moonracer was over the island and tried to convince Rudolph to tell Santa about them so he could pick them up and find kids who would play with them.

Related image

The original 1964 airing did not include the closing scene where Santa picks up the misfit toys. That scene was added in 1965, in response to complaints that Santa was not shown fulfilling his promise to include them in his annual delivery.

The stop animation in this works really well.

The songs are really good. Silver and Gold, Holly Jolly Christmas, Jingle Jingle Jingle, We Are Santa’s Elves, There’s Always Tomorrow, We’re a Couple of Misfits, and The Most Wonderful Day of the Year.

I must say…I like stop motion more than computer animation.


Johnny Cash and Neil Young – Little Drummer Boy

I have to admit…I didn’t know this existed until a few days ago. I was looking for more Dylan Christmas songs and this popped up. I will be honest…Little Drummer Boy has never been my favorite Christmas song but this version is probably the best I’ve heard. 

 It comes from Seven Gates: A Christmas Album by Ben Keith and Friends, which was released in 1994. It was co-produced by Neil Young. You can hear Johnny Cash loud and clear but Neil doesn’t have his usual voice in this one. 

Ben Keith and Neil Young’s relationship began when the multi-instrumentalist Keith first worked with him in 1971 on the Harvest album. The two were introduced together by the producer Elliot Mazer, who found him in Nashville and asked him to be a last-minute session musician on the record. After that first meeting, they helped each other until Ben Keith passed away at Neil Young’s ranch in 2010. 

Remarkably, this cover is the only time that Johnny Cash and Neil Young have ever collaborated. Neil was a guest on The Johnny Cash Show in the early seventies. 

The song was written by Harry Simeone, Katherine Kennicott Davis, and Henry Onorati. First recorded in 1951 by the Trapp Family. The song was originally titled “Carol of the Drum” and was based upon a traditional Czech carol.

Neil also contributed Greensleeves on that album so I thought I would add that below. 

Neil Young on the Johnny Cash Show. 


Little Drummer Boy

Come they told me, pa rum pa pum pum
Our newborn King to see, pa rum pa pum pum
Our finest gifts we bring, pa rum pa pum pum
To lay before the King, pa rum pa pum pum,
Rum pa pum pum, rum pa pum pum,
So to honor Him, pa rum pa pum pum,
When we come…
Little Baby , pa rum pa pum pum
I am a poor boy too, pa rum pa pum pum
I have no gift to bring, pa rum pa pum pum
To lay before the King, pa rum pa pum pum,
Rum pa pum pum, rum pa pum pum,
Shall I play for you, pa rum pa pum pum,
On my drum?…

Mary nodded, pa rum pa pum pum
The ox and lamb kept time, pa rum pa pum pum
I played my drum for Him, pa rum pa pum pum
I played my best for Him, pa rum pa pum pum
Rum pa pum pum, rum pa pum pum
Then He smiled at me, pa rum pa pum pum
Me and my drum…
Me and my drum…
Me and my drum…
Me and my drum…
Me and my drum…