Merry Christmas Qt3! (Holiday Music Mix, 2012)

This one is…different.

This mix I mean. It probably “feels” different. See, I had a goofy mix set to upload last Friday…and then, well, the world intervened. I started from scratch at that point, although a few songs from that mix made it through to this one anyway.

I can’t rightly say why the events in Connecticut affected me so deeply. Perhaps it’s because I remember sort of getting lost on I-84 8 years ago in the middle of winter and stopping off in Newtown to ask directions. Maybe it’s just the season, and thinking about all those Christmas presents that won’t ever be opened. I don’t know. Something.

What I do know is this. I’m not at all a “kid person”. I like the idea of little kids, and I loved being one, let me tell you what. I have zero paternal instincts, though. I like kids, they just make me feel like a big, clueless doofus most of the time, and I’m pretty sure they can sense that discomfort.

Last Friday I was picking up some carryout and there were about 5 of us in line and this lady in front of me had two little girls who were somewhere between 3 and 6 years old. They were running around, despite Mom’s best abilities to keep them corralled. They were laughing and giggling and being little kids. One of them was jumping around with this ragged-looking stuffed horse.

Mom, looking a little exasperated, looked up at the rest of us in line and apologized for her amped up little daughters. All I could think was “No no no. Today of all days, two weeks before Christmas, let ‘em play all they want.”

The sound of their laughter was like magic. Even so, I had to excuse myself from the line to go wipe some tears from my eyes.

I have no idea what any of that has to do with Christmas, other than establishing the frame of mind I was in while reworking a Christmas mix in a few days. If there’s less of my lame sense of humor and holiday goofishness in this year’s mix, well, now you know why.

What I will say is that when I see twitter and facebook posts with folks talking about what they want for Christmas, I already know exactly what I want, and I’d like it every year from now on.

What I want is for all of us–myself, family and all you friends–to be safe and sound, and happy. Get me even close to an approximation of that gift, and I’m all good.

Merry Christmas!

(Either right-click the title and “save as” to download or left click to stream…but you knew that.)

As Long As We Have Hands To Clasp (Holiday Music Mix, 2012)

  1. Vince Guaraldi Trio, “What Child Is This?”
  2. The Attic Lights, “Why Does Christmas Have To Be So Hard?”
  3. Emmy The Great & Tim Wheeler, “Home For the Holidays”
  4. Luna, “Egg Nog”
  5. Big Dee Irwin & Little Eva, “I Wish You A Merry Christmas”
  6. Vashti Bunyan, “Coldest Night Of The Year”
  7. The Frank & Walters “Song For A Future Love”
  8. Teenage Fanclub, “December”
  9. Tracey Thorn, “Snow In Sun”
  10. Fountains Of Wayner, “Valley Winter Song”
  11. Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci, “Christmas Eve”
  12. Tender Trap, “Leaving Christmas Day”
  13. Magic Theater, “Christmas Lights”
  14. The Quarter Afer, “Winter Song”
  15. The Clumsy Lovers, “Welcome Christmas”
  16. Best Coast & Wavves, “Got Something For You”
  17. Ex Cops, “Wonderful Christmas”
  18. Foxtails Brigade, “Winter’s Feat”
  19. The Primitives, “You Trashed My Christmas”
  20. Calexico, “Green Grows The Holly”
  21. The Pogues, “Fairytale Of New York”
  22. Richard Hawley (Live At The Devil’s Arse) “Silent Night”

It’s here! It’s here! Sing hosannas and shout it from the rooftops! Triggercut’s holiday mix is here!!!

I had the luxury of tuning out the Newtown tragedy almost completely. Reason being that I was preoccupied at the Mayo clinic in Rochester, MN with my mom and sister as my dad was undergoing pancreatic cancer surgery. They rearranged his innards every which way but loose but he’s recuperating nicely and getting out of the hospital today. Now he gets to regain his strength so they can zap it again with chemo and radiation. Fortunately he’s in incredibly good shape for 71.

Point being, I’m right there with you on the different holiday mood this year! I came home determined to splurge at the toy store on A&K and add to the Christmas morning pile under the tree. (I also splurged on myself and am now sitting in front of a frankly ludicrous but wonderful triple monitor display with 2 Dell 24 inchers and one Asus 27 incher. Playing Santa is fun!)

As always, thanks for this wonderful tradition!

Looking forward to listening to it when I get home.

Oohhh, starting with one of my faves, very nice looking mix, thanks man!

I love this Vashti Bunyan track so much.

These mixes have become a big part of christmas for me, I look forward to them year round. That’s saying a lot, because I’m the guy who loudly complains when they start playing christmas music at work, or in stores.

Thanks very much Triggercut! Merry Christmas to you!

Yes, Merry Christmas, Chris!

Good call on Teenage Fanclub too… sounds like a fuzzy, warm hat over my ears.

And I love how Valley Winter Song can be exactly as jaunty and uplifting or sad and nostalgic as you want it to be.

Great list as always! Very indiepop-heavy this year.

Just a note about that Tracey Thorn song “Snow In Sun”, it’s actually a cover of a song by Scritti Politti from his brilliant 2006 sorta comeback album White Bread, Black Beer. It’s a wonderful sunshine-poppy bedroom-pop album that is massively underheard and I take any opportunity to mention it. :-)

I was kinda thinking the same thing. I’d also never thought of that one as a Christmas song, but now I’ll ONLY be able to think of it as a Christmas song. :)

Heh, don’t wish me Merry Christmas just yet until you’ve heard it…I wasn’t kidding on my blog yesterday when I talked about my first attempt at redoing the mix on Sunday. When I listened to my first take at a retry, it really did sound like "Morrissey Presents An Existential Christmas Featuring Emily Dickinson and Ian Curtis.” Really depressing stuff.

I hope I got most of that out of there, but I can’t ever be sure.

charm, thanks for the heads-up on that Tracey Thorn tune! I thought I’d heard it before, but wasn’t sure where! Somewhere I have that Scritti Politti disc. Tracey’s Christmas-themed record she just put out is really good.

Morton, I totally agree on that Vashti Bunyan track. It’s a really different kind of song for her, almost a straight-ahead pop song and not a folkish thing. I’ve had that sitting in a folder of Christmas music for about 4 years now, but never used it–or even listened to it, can you believe it–because I assumed the song title and artist meant it was a depressing scolding song about how people are suffering around the world or something. Imagine my surprise when it turns out to be a cuddly-er, happier take on the same theme as “Baby It’s Cold Outside”. Who knew?!?

Really liking this – thanks, triggercut. The Attic Lights’ track is great. Very Beach Boys, to my ears (not that I know their Christmas material well at all, so the comparison might not hold up).

My uncle – who is of the considered opinion that decent pop music ended in about 1964 – is going to love the Big Dee Irwin and Little Eva number.

CD, your ears aren’t deceiving you. The Attic Lights (who are good Scottish lads) do indeed nail them some Beach Boys harmonizing and feel.

I love the Frank & Walters. Thank you Trigg!

I’d heard that song I think last year, and considered it and threw it out towards the very end of things. Like every Frank & Walters song, it’s overly sentimental and walks right up to mawkishness and being totally overdone.

…and obviously this year, that didn’t bother me so much.

The video does the same thing–pretty much oversentimental and overdone…and I don’t care. I love it:

I’ve listened to it through a dozen times or so now. Thank you, triggercut. After the holiday season I’ve had, this is exactly what I needed.

So I went back to last year’s mix, and holy shit, that “Christmas With The Snow” track by Marah really needs some sort of warning label or announcement or something. Ungodly irresistible. I had to buy it, put it on repeat, and just let it go until it was done with me.

So thanks again, I think :)

Thank you!

Merry Christmas from Andrew W. K. and Rodney the Mailman.

I’m pretty sure you’ve ruined Christmas music on the radio for me forever, Triggercut. Once I hear “It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas” for the 10th time in a day, I want to make Bonnie and Ben choke on their hop along boots, and all I can do is wonder why they don’t play half the variety in songs you find.

So… Thanks?

Also, Christmas with the Snow is possibly the most infectious song ever. It’s probably my wife’s favorite xmas song now, and that’s totally thanks to you, so a big no-question mark thank you for that.

Merry Christmas trig! And to everybody!

What I love about “Christmas With The Snow”–and what I think makes it work–is just how innocent and silly it is…and how it’s delivered with a wide-eyed sincerity that totally sells it. It’s the sound of a bunch of grownups who should know better channeling that feeling of being nine years old and it’s snowing and there’s no school tomorrow and all you can do is run around the house like Culkin in Home Alone on a triple espresso waiting for the snow to pile up enough so that you can run out and play in it.