Mary I’m Tryin’ To Be Cool. (Holiday Music Mix 2013)

December 20, 2013 at 11:46 am (Uncategorized)

Ok, so not the latest I’ve finally posted a holiday mix, but close to it. Sorry! The older I get, the more I understand how easily and readily people will trade money for time. You can always make more money, but time? Time vanishes, and I am always wanting more of it!

At any rate, this mix has gone through about 17 different modifications over the last week alone. Some of you may have gotten a CD with an earlier mix. Sorry about that. This one’s better.

This was a weird year. In some ways it was just awful. I lost people I loved, folks dear to me who I admired. There were good things, too, though. Lots of them. I won’t bore you with details like one of those Christmas letters, (which I really like, but apparently I’m in the minority!) I’ll just say that overall I’m ending 2013 being cool with it as far as years go.

All that said then, no agenda to this year’s mix, besides being music I want to hear this time of year, I mean. It occurs to me that more than any other year, the ladies are well represented this year, moreso than any other mix I’ve done. For instance, there’s a terrific song by Amelia Fletcher, a twee-pop founding light from Tallulah Gosh and Heavenly. If you’ve not paid attention, since ramping down her music career a bit, Ms. Fletcher got her Ph.D in Economics from Oxford and is now a professor in the subject. Which is awesome.

What always strikes me this time of year, too is how many sad songs there are at Christmas. I think I know why that is: it’s just easier for an artist to do a cheapie cash-in holiday single and try to maintain artistic cred by faking their way through it all by playing it off as a chance to do another Taylor Swift hurt feeling wallow. That’s why I’m so happy I started listing to so much Lisa Mychols in the last few months. Lisa’s been a fixture in the L. A. guitar pop scene for a while now. One of the first things she ever released was a record of Christmas songs, and she’s redone it with better equipment. It’s called Lost Winter’s Dream, and it’s fantastic. When she sings songs of happiness or sadness on that record that revolve around the holidays, she’s not fooling around, or playing it off for a cheapie cash-in. The song I picked this year (and it was tough deciding on just one) is so sincere about being in love and loving this season that it’s heartbreaking and pure. (Seriously, world at large, you should be listening to way more Lisa Mychols than you currently are.

Ok, so what else? I finally got a chance to use the Aztec Camera song I’d been wanting to. Any time you can put Roddy Frame into a music mix, you really ought to do it. There’s also a traditional Welsh Christmas carol here, “Hwiangerdd Mair”, sung by Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci’s Euros Childs the way only people who were raised speaking that amazing language can do it. (The title translates as “Mary’s Lullaby”.) There’s an amazing rocker by The Bellrays, who always just knock my doors off–think Tina Turner fronting a garage rock band if you’re not familiar. There’s some jazz, some rockabilly, some serious, some silly.

Merry Christmas, y’all! Hit that eggnog hard!

Mary I’m Trying To Be Cool

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Track List:

1. Velocity Girl “Merry Christmas, I Love You”
2. Big Star “Jesus Christ”
3. The Ping Pongs “Don’t Wanna Wait Till Christmas”
4. Amelia Fletcher & Hit Parade “Christmas Tears”
5. The J’s With Jamie “Cool Yule”
6. Aztec Camera “Walk Out To Winter”
7. The New Pornographers “Joseph Who Understood”
8. Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci “Hwiangerdd Mair”
9. The Bellrays “Merry Christmas Baby”
10.Debbie Dabney “I Want To Spend Christmas With Elvis (Heartbreak Noel)”
11.The White Stripes “Candy Cane Children”
12.Dressy Bessy “All The Right Reasons”
13.Charlie Parker “White Christmas”
14.The Ettes “Stars In The Sky”
15.Cheap Trick “Come On Christmas”
16.The School “Kiss Me In The Snow”
17.I Am The World Trade Center “Rockefeller Tree”
18.Eric Matthews “Have Yourself A Merry Christmas”
19.Lisa Mychols “Listen To The Bells Ring”
20.Solomon Burke “Presents For Christmas”
21.Combustible Edison “Christmas Time Is Here”
22.Ella Fitzgerald “The Christmas Song”
23.Kathy & Jimmy Zee “Santa Claus Rock and Roll”
24.Kurt Vile “Snowflakes Are Dancing”
25.Still making with that song here.

(If you didn’t figure out to click the title of the mix, you can also just click this.)

(Other than that familiar final song, whole thing is fairly work and kid safe.)

(As with every year, everything’s in one big mp3, about 70 minutes worth of music. If you hear something you like, spend some of that Christmas loot on an artist!)

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