Good news, holiday revelers — my latest seasonal mix is now available for your careful review and amusement, and, like the dozen or so previous CDs I've generously made available over the years, this collection will have you shaking and scratching your head at the same time. It's called Is There Really a Santa Claus? and it features 39 unforgettable tracks that collectively speak to the full spectrum of human emotions. There's a little something here for everyone, and try as you may, once heard, you'll soon discover that some of these bells can never be unrung.
This offering opens with a pair of compositions by Daniel Johnston, the widely acclaimed "outsider musician" and star of the 2006 film The Devil and Daniel Johnston. After a quick hello from Smokey Robinson, the next voice you'll hear will be that of former Tennessee gubernatorial candidate Basil Marceaux, or as he now refers to himself, "Basil Marceaux dot com." His campaign may have never really got off the ground, but his song "Come Christmas" will propel any holiday gathering from zero to sixty before he starts singing his first indecipherable chorus. For the next 70 minutes or so, you'll be subjected to the sort of wild rollercoaster ride you've come to expect from my previous holiday mixes. On the one hand, there are a number of stunningly good selections, such as "Sha La Da La La (Christmas Time)," by the Sha La Das, and two different versions of the beautiful hymn "Oh Come, Oh Come, Emmanuel," by the Front Range Christian School Advanced Band and the R&B supergroup Boyz II Men. But for every wonderful tune you'll discover here there's another less fortunate number, like Wing's "Santa Claus on a Helicopter," and Red Sovine's heartbreaking rendition of the title track, which will have you wondering whether there's a law against this sort of thing — and if not, why not?
As has been the custom, this year's mix winds down with a handful of tracks that honor the memories of several gifted entertainers we lost in 2014: actor and comedian Robin Williams, comic and television host Joan Rivers, actor Mickey Rooney, radio personality Casey Kasem, comedian Jan Hooks, actress and diplomat Shirley Temple Black, singer and peace activist Pete Seeger, author Maya Angelou, and Broadway legend Elaine Stritch. These remarkable entertainers have enriched our lives for several generations, and each is and will be sorely missed.
Is There Really a Santa Claus? includes 39 tracks and runs for just under 80 minutes. You can listen to the first few tracks or the entire mix by clicking on the appropriate button, below. The complete CD track list is also available, along with artwork for a disc label and jewel box insert. For those who'd like additional information about any or all of the 39 tracks, check out my "Bells Will Be Ringing" holiday music blog starting on "Black Friday," November 28 and running through Christmas Eve.
I hope you enjoy my latest project, and be sure to check back sometime around December 1, 2015 for my next holiday mix.
PRESS THE ORANGE BUTTON ON THE FOLLOWING SOUNDCLOUD BOX TO HEAR THE FIRST SEVERAL TRACKS:
Is There Really a Santa Claus?
New 2014 Holiday Mix Offers Unique Blend of Seasonal Mishegas
NOTE: A number of listeners have reported difficulty accessing this mix and related materials via the Internet Explorer 11 browser. If you are experiencing similar problems, you might try a different browser such as Chrome or Firefox. Sorry, but this mix is available for streaming only, not downloading.
New Special Bonus Mix Features Still More Songs to Celebrate the New Year
Just in time for the new year, my latest special holiday bonus mix offers another collection of songs selected to help kick off your new year in style. We Know What You Did Last New Year's Eve is my third collection of New Year's songs and other sounds, following Happy New Year! (2007) and Ringin; In a Brand New Year (2012). Like those earlier mixes, this latest collection includes a number of tracks that were specifically selected with New Year's Eve in mind — party songs that capture all the fun and frolic associated with the traditional countdown to midnight. This one's a little different, however, in that its overall tone is more reflective and low key. Most of the material was chosen with New Year's morning in mind rather than New Year's Eve.
We Know What You Did Last New Year's Eve includes 24 tracks and runs for a litle over an hour. It features by Graham Parker, the Eagles, the Animaniacs and The Go Find, as well as classics from Bing Crosby, Judy Garland and Peggy Lee. You can access the mix today by way of the following buttons. I've also included a track list and templates you can use to print a CD label and jewel box insert.