Every Friday night we smooth our way into the weekend with music, the universal language. These selections demonstrate that despite what is being passed off as art today, there is plenty of really good music available. Come along and enjoy.
Hard to believe but some folks have already taken down their Christmas trees, lights and decorations. Did it on December 26th.
Wrong, wrong, wrong!
On January 6th, the Feast of the Epiphany (in most places in the U.S. the feast is transferred to the Sunday between January 2 and January 8), the Church celebrates the biblical event where the Magi, also called the Three Wise Men or Three Kings, traveled from the East to pay homage to the newborn King, Jesus Christ. Many believe that this is the date when the Christmas season officially ends, being the end of the traditional 12 days of Christmas.
Suffice it to say it’s still the Christmas season. At least I think so. With that in mind here’s another round of holiday music as we head into the New Year celebration.
We open with a twin spin. Here’s the Grammy Award-winning Gordon Goodwin’s Big Phat Band with a selection from a modern film adaption of “A Christmas Carol” where Daffy Duck, in an Ebenezer Scrooge role, is visited by three Christmas Ghosts.
Yes, “Christmas” is in the title. But you’d never know it’s a Christmas melody just by listening, unless you knew the song.
Let’s resolve a holly berry mystery. From Birds and Blooms:
Birders and gardeners know their feathered friends love to feast on holly bushes’ berries. But it’s also worth noting that holly berries, leaves, and bark are all mildly poisonous because they contain theobromine, a substance similar to caffeine. In small amounts this won’t really affect humans, but large amounts can bring on stomach issues and more. In fact, one species of holly native to the southeastern U.S., known as Yaupon holly, has the terrific botanical name Ilex vomitoria. Native Americans even used some of these species in traditional medicines to induce vomiting.
While birds can handle the toxicity of the berries, like dogs and and cats cannot.
Christmas DAY may be over but we continue to celebrate the Christmas SEASON, a most joyous time.
One of the greatest classical composers of all time, Johann Sebastian Bach is credited with over 1000 known compositions including more than 200 cantatas.
Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring was composed in 1716 and revised in 1723.
You often hear it played reverently, slowly at weddings when the bridal party enters for its procession.
Would Bach have objected to any tinkering, perhaps a more upbeat tempo?
The 1941 song “Tangerine” was made famous again in 1976 by the Salsoul Orchestra that also recorded a Christmas album that same year.
Their second Christmas album released in 1981, “Christmas Jollies II” featured a definite uptempo rendition of one of Bach’s biggest hits.
The Salsoul Orchestra formed in 1974 and disbanded in 1982.
Turns out Bach had something in common with rock and roll Hall of Famer Jerry Lee Lewis who recently passed away. Bach married his cousin Maria Barbara Bach at Dornheim on October 17, 1707.
She died unexpectedly and was buried on July 7, 1720. Bach re-married the following year. During his lifetime the composer had 20 children, only 10 of whom survived to maturity. Bach reportedly was a very good husband and father.
The mere thought of New Year’s Eve brings back childhood memories of Mom and Dad glued to the TV and bandleader Guy Lombardo’s annual show.
Was the music corny? Depends on how old you are I guess.
Not a bad era. Men in tuxedos and women in evening gowns out on the dance floor on the final night of the year. Perfect waltz opportunities.
Here’s another twin spin, beginning with the final portion of a beautiful Johann Strauss piece followed by Keith Lockhart conducting.
Next, a quick obscure selection. Sounds like it would come out of Dad’s record collection.
Speaking of Guy Lombardo he popularized the most famous New Year’s musical selection performed here by Bob James on piano, Larry Carlton on guitar, Nathan East on bass, and Harvey Mason on drums.
Should auld acquaintance be forgot
And never brought to mind?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot
And the days of auld lang syne?
For auld lang syne, my dear
For auld lang syne
We’ll drink a cup of kindness yet
For the sake of auld lang syne
That’s it for this week.
Happy New Year.
Brian Setzer has tinnitus, a constant ringing in his ears. Tinnitus forced him to cancel his annual holiday shows with the Brian Setzer Orchestra in 2020 and 2021 and he has no scheduled tour dates as of today.
“Dealing with tinnitus — picture a tea kettle going off in your head all the time — it was maddening. It never goes away. You deal with it. I felt despondent that I wouldn’t be able to use my nice big Fender amp again.”
Before tinnitus Setzer could really swing. This album is celebrating its 20th anniversary. Setzer sings with his wife since 2005, Julie Reiten.
ENJOY OTHER CHRISTMAS MUSIC BLOGS!