Sunday, December 19, 2010

Bummed Out Christmas! (1989)

Bummed Out Christmas! (1989)

At long last, a Christmas album for the rest of us! Anyone who spends the month of December squirming as they hear a thousand trite and empty-headed musical declarations of holiday cheer finally gets a responsible statement of the opposing point of view with Bummed Out Christmas!, a collection of Yuletide music at its least cheerful.

While some of these tunes are actually pretty fun — most notably "Somebody Stole My Santa Claus Suit," with Dan Hicks fronting The Christmas Jug Band, and Sherwi Linton's "Santa Got a DWI" — several really are truly depressing stuff, particularly George Jones' "Lonely Christmas Call," Johnny and Jon's "Christmas in Viet Nam" (in which the holiday cease-fire is violated mid-song), and the Everly Brothers' just-plain-miserable "Christmas Eve Can Kill You."

But the rhythm and blues contingent really walk off with top honors here, thanks to Clyde Lasley's well-oiled "Santa Came Home Drunk," the Staple Singers' sincere "Who Took the Merry Out of Christmas?," and the Youngsters' brilliant "Christmas in Jail" (which wouldn't make a bad public service announcement).

So, put away that Kenny G holiday CD and give Bummed Out Christmas! a try — it's a wonderful way to say "Bah Humbug!" to the special people in your life.
—Mark Deming,

Track List
  1. Somebody Stole My Santa - The Christmas Jug Band
  2. Christmas Eve Can Kill You - The Everly Brothers
  3. Santa Came Home Drunk - Clyde Lasley And The Cadillac Baby Specials
  4. Don't Believe In Christmas - The Sonics
  5. Lonely Christmas Call - George Jones
  6. Christmas In Viet Nam - Johnny And Jon
  7. Santa Got A DWI - Sherwin Linton
  8. Who Took The Merry Out Of Christmas? - Staple Singers
  9. Who Say There Ain't No Santa Claus - Ron Holden And The Thunderbirds
  10. Christmas In Jail - The Youngsters
  11. Christmas Spirit? - The Wailers
  12. Christmas In Prison - Doug Legacy And The Legends Of The West
(Revised 08/24/2012)

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