December 03, 2009

Calling on Mary Is Voluntary

The holidays should usually be a blast, but I realize more and more, my favorite songs of the season aren’t about joy or happiness. They’re about loneliness, death, and sorrow. But relax—I don’t want to depress everyone so I threw in two bouncy tunes to clean your palette of the salty taste of your own tears.

I know PC is enjoying his first snowfall in the second city. The weather forced him to abandon his project of sculpting a life-size Santa out of the mud of Lake Michigan. Now, he’s working on building a life-size replica of Santa’s sleigh out of fudgesicle sticks. And is he ever eating the fudgesicles! I told him to just let them melt but he insisted that it would be cheating. Hopefully he can get a picture up of his progress, just as soon as his body temperature rises to a level where he’s capable of basic hand-eye coordination.

Last Month of the Year – The Blind Boys of Alabama

The twenty-fifth day of December in the last month of the year. (Yes, this is one of the happy tunes!)

Calling on Mary – Aimee Mann

A choice nugget from Mann’s fantastic holiday album, One More Drifter in the Snow, has some fantastic images. There’s just something here that drives you into a depression—the commercialism, the starless sky, and the endless search for comfort.

Hard Candy Christmas – Dolly Parton

Me? I’ll bounce right back. Something tells me that she won’t. Dolly nails the restless, aimless days of spending the holiday season alone.

Call Collect on Christmas – Del McCoury

A true bluegrass weeper with an important message—don’t forget to call your mother on Christmas.

Christmas in Heaven – Eddie Bond

This seems like a natural follow-up—another staggering tearjerker.

It Won’t Be the Same This Year – Vince Gill

And yet another song about facing death at Christmas—this one is about the death of Vince Gill’s brother. Gill, a supremely underrated as a modern country artist, has a voice that could carry the weight of Santa’s sleigh.

Snoopy’s Christmas – The Royal Guardsmen

Enough with the downers! Let’s close out today with that bloody Red Baron. Merry Christmas, my friend!