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Friday, December 17, 2004

Christmas Music

Does anyone remember the Claymation Christmas special? It must've aired more than 10 years ago, back when the California Raisins were takin the world by storm (think of the drug combination that would lead to thinkin up singing and dancing raisins). Anyway, that half hour was so spectacular, my brother and I watched the video at least 100 times while growing up. The Carol of the Bells skit was by far the funniest.

Being from New Hampshire, Christmas actually feels like Christmas. More often than not, snow is on the ground and wood stoves are pouring eat throughout neighborhood houses. Walking downtown, past decorated store fronts and the giant Christmas tree in Central Square, the holiday mood really hits you when you walk into a store and hear Christmas music. Of course, there is no greater platform for Christmas music than church on Chistmas Eve. Every year at the midnite service, my church ends its service by singing Joy to the World. It's just so powerful, so pure, I'm gettin a bit teary-eyed just writing about it. It makes you appreciate everything you have, even the sub-zero weather (still warmer than Canada) sitting on the other side of the church windows as it awaits your walk to the car.

My family always sits in one of the sanctuary's side balconies, enabling me to see everyone below. The wide variety of Christmas attire is sobering, ranging from suits and ties to old sweaters and winter hats; here, on Christmas Eve, the poor shake hands w/ the wealthy, wishing each other Merry Christmas as everyone climbs into their coats and scarves before leaving.

Since T-Rock, the Christmaholic, threw out her fav songs, I'll have to counter w/ my choices. And no, there are no muppets on my list.

Carol of the Bells
This is a fast lil diddly (can you call a Christmas song a "diddly?") that originated as a Ukrainian folk song called "shchedrivka." Just in case you were wondering. This is also one of the few Christmas songs I can play on the guitar. Btw, for all you true Americans who love Seinfeld: "The Ukraine is weak." -- Kramer

O Come, All Ye Faithful (church choir)
Maybe it's cuz this is usually the first powerful song sung during my church's midnite service, but there's something to be said about the strength of hundreds of people singing w/ the giant pipe organ while most of the city is already dreaming of morning. The way the choir belts out "Come and behold him, born the king of angels" really gets me into the Christmas spirit.

Do You Hear What I Hear? (The Roches)
Everyone remembers songs they listened to when they were really little because their parents listened to 'em. Well, The Roches' Christmas album is something I've listened to every Christmas I can remember, which could be why they hold a special place in my heart. This A capella group can flat-out sing, too. Ch-ch-check 'em out.

Christmas Time is Here (Charlie Brown and friends)
I've always loved Charlie Brown, probably because he's such a hard-luck loser all the time. You've gotta feel for the kid. Btw, is he bald, or does he just have a really bad haircut? These are the things that keep me awake at nite. This is a great gift-wrapping anthem, as it's very soothing w/ a touch of melancholy, fitting for the beautiful wrapping paper soon to be torn to shreds. Also a good choice when sliding that ring on your g/f's finger. Remember, every kiss begins w/ Kay.


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