Zombies – This Will Be Our Year

Next to Auld Lang Syne this is my favorite New Years Song. A favorite of mine from a favorite band of mine. Everyone… I wish you a Happy New Year in 2022.

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 2021.

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

Foo Fighters – Next Year

Well…it is “Next Year” today…I hope 2022 is a great year for all of us. 

You could call this a power ballad. It sounds a little like Britpop and Dave Grohl has criticized the song…no not critize…he HATES the song but it’s one of my favorites by them.

Dave Grohl: ‘Next Year’ is a piece of shit! That song is so stupid! It’s weird.”

I like weird Dave…

The song was released in December of 2000. It was on the album There Is Nothing Left to Lose. It peaked at #14 in the US Alternative Airplay Charts, #12 in Canada, and #42 in the UK in 2000-2001. 

The video is great… it remakes the Apollo 11 mission with clips around that time. It ends with the Foo Fighters in astronaut gear similiar to this Led Zeppelin photo. 

Led Zeppelin's 25 Greatest Deep Cuts : Napster

Next Year - Wikiwand

From Wiki: The opening of “Next Year” was used as the theme song for the NBC television series Ed (2000–2004). The show’s creators, Rob Burnett and Jon Beckerman (formerly of the Late Show with David Letterman) used the song despite knowledge of production company Viacom’s insistence that they own the rights to the show’s theme song. “Next Year” was thus ultimately replaced by Clem Snide’s “Moment in the Sun” during the second season. As a result of outcries from Burnett and Beckerman, however, Viacom relented and “Next Year” returned as the theme song in the third and fourth seasons.

Next Year

I’m in the sky tonight
There I can keep by your side
Watching the wide world riot
And hiding out
I’ll be coming home next year

Into the sun we climb
Climbing our wings will burn white
Everyone strapped in tight
We’ll ride it out
I’ll be coming home next year

Come on, get on, get on
Take it till life runs out
No one can find us now
Living with our heads underground

Into the night we shine
Lighting the way we glide by
Catch me if I get too high
When I come down
I’ll be coming home next year

I’m in the sky tonight
There I can keep by your side
Watching the whole world wind
Around and round
I’ll be coming home next year

Come on, get on, get on
Take it till I fall down
No one can find us now
Living with our heads underground

I’ll be coming home next year
I’ll be coming home next year
Everything’s all right up here
And if I come down
I’ll be coming home next year

Say goodbye
Say goodbye
Say goodbye
Say goodbye

I’ll be coming home next year
I’ll be coming home next year
Everything’s all right up here
And if I come down
I’ll be coming home next year
I’ll be coming home next year
I’ll be coming home next year

Happy New Year To All Of You!

I want to thank everyone who has read my blog this year and the last few years.

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

In 2016 I would not have believed I would be communicating with people in different states across America, 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.

Now…I want to mention a few I follow and read and they come and visit me also. I was hesitant to do this 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 and Graham …after talking them I would love to visit there.

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

I’ve even listened to Heavy Metal and Canadian bands from Deke and Dave.

I’ve read great stories and read poems for really the first time from Lisa and Bruce

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 and Dave

Looked at sewing machines as works of art with run-sew-read

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

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

Monday songs from Eden

How radio really works and more about family from Keith

Learning every number 1 from the UK with Stuart

About life and friendship from Vic,

Wonderful life stories from Mitch,

Album reviews from John and Graham,

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

Awesome posts from Mojo Horizon

Restaurants to eat at from Blaine

Detailed history history from Rick

Cooking and Saint Bernards from Jeanne

Inspiring writing from Pam

Writing and an author… Steve

Movies from Master Mix Movies

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

Cool music from Hotfox63

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

I learn a lot about business situations from Kally

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

Nashville music history from my cousin Ricky

Comics from Harry Chamberlain

Stories from James

Animals from Cheche Winnie

Awesome Cartoons from Hobo Cartoons

Commenting over at Dave’s blog with Obbverse

The writing of Jason 

Fellow power pop fan Mike

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 and 2021…lets make this one better!

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

Otis Redding & Carla Thomas – New Year’s Resolution

This song is a great way to start a year! Anytime you can hear Otis…you are on the right path! Have a Happy New Year!

Stax’s house band, Booker T & the MGs, provides the backing.  Note Booker T’s subtle but effective organ lending the song a spiritual element, while Donald “Duck” Dunn’s bass and Steve Cropper’s tasteful guitar licks ground the track’s rhythm

Stax was hoping to replicate the success of Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell. Stax paired two of their greatest stars for the 1967 album King & Queen, which produced the hit “Tramp.” The album featured their takes on classics such as “Knock on Wood,” “When Something Is Wrong with My Baby,” “Bring It on Home to Me,” and “It Takes Two”

This song was on the King and Queen album released in 1967. This is the only album they got to make because Otis died in a plane crash on December 10, 1967.

New Year’s Resolution

I hope it’s not too late
Just to say that I’m sorry, honey
All I want to do
Is just finish what we started, baby

Let’s turn over a new leave
And baby let’s make promises
That we can keep
And call it a New Year’s resolution, hmmm

Oh, I’m a woman
And woman makes mistakes too
But will you, will you forget the changes
That I put you through

let’s try it again
Just you and me
And, baby, let’s see how happy honey, yeah
That we can be
And call it a New Year’s resolution, yeah, yeah, yeah

Many times we had our ups and downs
And times you needed me I couldn’t be found
I’m sorry
And I’m sorry too
I’ll never, never do it again, no, no, no
So baby before we fall out
Let’s fall on in, yeah, yeah
Oh, and we’re gonna try harder
Not to hurt each other again, oh
Love me baby, huh
Week after week
And baby let’s make promises
That we can keep
And call it a New Year’s resolution, yeah, oh
I know we can do it Carla
I’m gonna keep my promises
I’m gonna hold on that we can do it, baby
Oh, it’s not too late
You’re gonna love me
Nobody else
Oh Otis let’s finish what we started
Talk no mean

Bing Crosby – Silent Night

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 26,000 different versions of “Silent Night” on Spotify, meaning you could listen to a different rendition of the carol every night for 72 years.

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.

The Pretenders – 2000 Miles

Good morning everyone and I hope you have a great Christmas.

The guitar in this song is haunting…

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.

“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.

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

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 wonderful day today.

I just heard the  Jackson 5 version again yesterday. Every year I usually post the Bruce version…that one is my favorite version but I wanted to changed it up this year.

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 it came off the album Jackson 5 Christmas Album. The album peaked at #53 in 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
Rooty-toot-toot
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

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
Christmastime

Bing Crosby & David Bowie – Peace On Earth / The Little Drummer Boy

I know what I was doing on November 30, 1977. I was watching Merrie Olde Christmas special as a kid. I didn’t appreciate the weirdness of the combination of Bing Crosby and David Bowie at the time. Something that the seventies did well and sometimes bad…was to intersect generations on variety shows. This one was a good combination.

This special had guest stars  Twiggy, David Bowie, Ron Moody, Stanley Baxter, and The Trinity Boys Choir. It was the duet with Bing Crosby and David Bowie that has been remembered. I remember watching this knowing that Bing Crosby had died the month earlier. The duet was taped on September 11, 1977, and Crosby died on October 14, 1977.

David Bowie’s mother was a huge Bing Crosby fan and Bing Crosby’s children were big David Bowie fans…so the two agreed to sing together. It was questionable at first if it would work out.

Mary Crosby: “The doors opened and David walked in with his wife,” she recalled. “They were both wearing full-length mink coats, they have matching full makeup and their hair was bright red. We were thinking, ‘Oh my god.'” Nathaniel Crosby, Bing’s son, added: “It almost didn’t happen. I think the producers told him to take the lipstick off and take the earring out. It was just incredible to see the contrast.”

Another possible hitch happened with Bowie. He didn’t like The Little Drummer Boy and refused to sing it. The writers then wrote a revised version of the song that he liked. They wrote a counterpart section for Bowie to sing. Crosby liked the challenge of his part. The rest is history and one of the most unusual pairings you will ever see…

One funny part is Bowie’s idea of “older fellas” at the time is John Lennon and Harry Nilsson.

The Little Drummer Boy (Peace On Earth)

Come they told me pa-rum-pum-pum-pum
A newborn king to see pa-rum-pum-pum-pum
Our finest gifts we bring pa-rum-pum-pum-pum
Rum-pum-pum-pum, rum-pum-pum-pum

[Verse 2: Bowie and Crosby]
Peace on Earth can it be?
Come they told me pa-rum-pum-pum-pum
Years from now, perhaps we’ll see?
A newborn king to see pa-rum-pum-pum-pum
See the day of glory
Our finest gift we bring pa-rum-pum-pum-pum
See the day, when men of good will
To lay before the king pa-rum-pum-pum-pum
Live in peace, live in peace again
Rum-pum-pum-pum, Rum-pum-pum-pum
Peace on Earth
So to honour him pa-rum-pum-pum-pum
Can it be
When we come

[Bridge: Bowie and Crosby in unison]
Every child must be made aware
Every child must be made to care
Care enough for his fellow man
To give all the love that he can

[Verse 4: Bowie and Crosby]
I pray my wish will come true
Little baby pa-rum-pum-pum-pum
For my child and your child too
I stood beside him there pa-rum-pum-pum-pum
He’ll see the day of glory
I played my drum for him pa-rum-pum-pum-pum
See the day when men of good will
I played my best for him pa-rum-pum-pum-pum
Live in peace, live in peace again
Rum-pum-pum-pum, rum-pum-pum-pum
Peace on Earth
Me and my drum
Can it be

Can it be

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer

Merry Christmas Eve everyone! We always have our Christmas on Christmas Eve night. Some of the family comes 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 in Germany visiting his girlfriend so it’s our first Christmas without him…that part is hard but we will enjoy this Christmas Eve.

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 convinced 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.

https://christmas-specials.fandom.com/wiki/Rudolph_the_Red-Nosed_Reindeer_(Rankin/Bass)

Slade – Merry Xmas Everybody

Merry Christmas Everybody… for all of the UK readers…I know I know…you are so tired of it. I’ve only heard it for the past three years or so. There are a few Christmas songs along with Alices Restaurant that I reblog every year…and this is one of them. I have this on our music list at Christmas and we love it.

This is fast becoming my favorite rock Christmas song second only to John Lennon’s Happy Xmas (War Is Over)

This is a great Christmas song that was released in 1973 and ever since it re-enters the charts every December in the UK. The song never hit in America but it went to #1 in the UK Charts. I first heard it on a Doctor Who episode in the mid-2000s and have liked it ever since.

This was based on a psychedelic song, “My Rocking Chair,” which Noddy Holder wrote in 1967. In 1973 the Slade vocalist decided to convert it into a Christmas song after a night out drinking at a local pub.

He and the band’s bass player and co-writer Jimmy Lea camped out at Noddy’s mother’s house and got down to changing the lyrics to make them more Christmassy. Jimmy Lea incorporated into the verse parts of another song which he was then writing and Noddy re-wrote the words incorporating different aspects of the Christmas holiday season as they came to mind.

This went straight in at #1 in the UK, selling over 300,000 copies on the day of its release, making it at the time the fastest ever selling record in Britain. It eventually became Slade’s best-ever selling single in the UK, selling over a million copies.

In the UK this has become a standard, and it is usually reissued in its original form each Christmas. On several occasions, the song has re-entered the Top 40.

UK copyright collection society and performance rights organization PRS For Music estimated in 2009 that 42 percent of the earth’s population has heard this tune.

The song was written by Noddy Holder and Jim Lea of Slade. It was produced by Chas Chandler formerly of the Animals.

Noddy Holder: “I wrote the original verse with the lyrics, ‘Buy me a rocking chair, I’ll watch the world go by. Bring me a mirror, I’ll look you in the eye,’ in 1967 in the aftermath of The Beatles’ Sgt Pepper,” I was being psychedelic. Dave (Hill) wrote another part to the song but it didn’t work so we put it away. Then in 1973 he remembered my verse one day when we were trying to write a Christmas single. We changed the words to, ‘Are you hanging up your stocking on the wall?’ and the rest fell into place.”

From Songfacts.

When Noddy Holder wrote the line “Look to the future now, it’s only just begun,” he had in mind the strikes that were blighting Britain at the time. He told the Daily Mail On Sunday November 10, 2007: “We’d decided to write a Christmas song and I wanted to make it reflect a British family Christmas. Economically, the country was up the creek. The miners had been on strike, along with the gravediggers, the bakers and almost everybody else. I think people wanted something to cheer them up – and so did I. That’s why I came up with the line.”

The harmonium used on this is the same one that John Lennon used on his Mind Games album, which was being recorded at the studio next door.

This was recorded at the Record Plant studios in New York while the band were on a tour of the States in the summer of 1973. When they recorded the vocals, they sang the chorus on the stairs in order to achieve the echo that they required. Guitarist Jimmy Lea recalled to Uncut magazine in 2012: “All these Americans were walking past in their suits thinking we were off our rockers singing about Christmas in the summer.”

Producer Chas Chandler opened the song with a howl recorded during some of Noddy Holder’s vocal exercises.

A few months before Slade recorded this song, drummer Don Powell was badly injured in a car crash. Though his physical recovery was quick, the mental scars took longer to heal. Noddy Holder explained to The Daily Mail December 18, 2009: “The doctors told us to get him playing drums again as soon as possible to boost his confidence. But he was suffering from short-term memory loss – he could remember our old songs, but not the new ones. So, instead of recording live, we built up Merry Xmas Everybody layer by layer. That gave it a more poignant, restrained sound. It was something new for us. But the fates were with us and it became our biggest hit.”

Noddy Holder’s earliest childhood memory served as inspiration for one of the song’s lines. He recalled to the Mail On Sunday’s Live magazine: “As a lad we used to knock sleds with old orange boxes and go tobogganing down this big old quarry in the snow at Christmas. It was the inspiration for the line ‘are you hoping that the snow will start to fall.’”

I want that hat he starts off with… in this video…very subtle.

Merry Christmas Everybody

Are you hanging up a stocking on your wall?
It’s the time that every Santa has a ball
Does he ride a red nosed reindeer?
Does a ‘ton up’ on his sleigh
Do the fairies keep him sober for a day?

Chorus:
So here it is merry Christmas
Everybody’s having fun
Look to the future now
It’s only just begun

Are you waiting for the family to arrive?
Are you sure you got the room to spare inside?
Does your granny always tell ya that the old are the best?
Then she’s up and rock ‘n’ rollin’ with the rest

Chorus:
So here it is merry Christmas
Everybody’s having fun
Look to the future now
It’s only just begun

What will your daddy do
When he sees your Mama kissin’ Santa Claus?
Ah ah

Are you hanging up a stocking on your wall?
Are you hoping that the snow will start to fall?
Do you ride on down the hillside in a buggy you have made?
When you land upon your head then you’ve been slayed

Chorus (4x)
So here it is merry Christmas
Everybody’s having fun
Look to the future now
It’s only just begun

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”
Stink
Stank
Stunk

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

http://mentalfloss.com/article/72593/13-spirited-facts-about-how-grinch-stole-christmas

Bruce Springsteen – Merry Christmas Baby

There has been many versions of this song but this one is the one I listen to the most. The dynamics in this version is great.

This Dec 31st, 1980 performance of Merry Christmas Baby was recorded at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Uniondale, NY, during The River Tour. The song was played in its E Street Band arrangement. It was released in November 1986 as the B-side to WAR. This was the lead single from the Live/1975-85 box set.

Although Chuck Berry and Elvis Presley covered “Merry Christmas Baby” before Bruce did, it sounds like he based  his version on Otis Redding’s 1968 version.

Lou Baxter wrote this song but it was called “Merry Christmas Blues” and Charles Brown took it home to work it out. He rewrote it with the new title. Baxter wanted Charles Brown to record it the way Charles rewrote it and it became a big hit with Brown singing with Johnny Moore’s Three Blazers.

Then the music business struck again…The company promised Charles he would have a co-writer credit but of course, it didn’t happen and Johnny Moore had his name listed on the song instead. Charles never got paid royalties for the song. It was originally released in 1947 and peaked at #3 in the Charts.

Moore died, largely unknown, in the 1960s. Brown, meanwhile, became renowned as a pioneer of the laid-back, piano-driven style of West Coast blues and was recognized as an early influence on Ray Charles; he had a renaissance in the 1990s, touring with Bonnie Raitt.

Charles Brown was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1999 but died before the induction.

It was also on a complication album A Very Special Christmas of various artists released in 1987.

Merry Christmas Baby

Bring it down, band!

Now, I just came here tonight to say…
I just wanna say…
I just wanna say…

Merry Christmas baby, you surely treat me nice
Come on, merry Christmas baby, you surely treat me nice
I feel just like I’m living, living in paradise

Now listen
Now you see, I feel real good tonight
And I got music on the radio
And I feel real good tonight
And I got music on the radio
And the boys in the band are playing pretty good!
Now, I feel just like I wanna kiss you
Underneath my mistletoe

But now listen
Santa came down chimney, half past three
With lots of nice little presents for my baby and me
Merry Christmas baby, you surely treat me nice
And I feel like I’m living, just living in paradise
Come on boys!

Well now, Santa came down chimney, half past three
With lots of nice little presents for my baby and me
Merry Christmas baby, you surely treat me nice
I feel like I’m living, I’m living in paradise

And I just came down to say
Merry Christmas baby
I just wanna say, merry Christmas baby
I just wanna say, merry Christmas baby
I just wanna say, merry Christmas baby
And happy New Year, too!
Oh yeah!
Play it boys, go!
Merry Christmas
Ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-happy New Year
Ohhhh!

Oh yeah!
Merry Christmas baby!

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.

Frosty The Snowman

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.