Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Wishing You A Simply Wonderful Christmastime

Well it’s that time of the year again. No not International Dance Like a Giraffe Day, though seriously it deserves more recognition than it gets.

It’s time to place Retro Universe on hiatus for a couple of weeks, in order to finish Xmas shopping, watch the Boxing Day Test Match, eat, drink, frolic in the sunshine, and generally act all merry-like. To anyone who reads this, please have a happy and safe holiday season. Be kind (to others and yourself), be happy (for others and yourself), and listen to great music!

Thankyou to regular readers of this blog (if there are any) for your ongoing support, casual passers by, and those who have arrived for the first time (don’t worry a porter will be along shortly to collect your luggage). I have thoroughly enjoyed the journey thus far, exploring the stories behind some of my favourite songs and artists, and I sincerely hope you‘ve enjoyed at least some of my ramblings along the way. My desire, nay determination, is to return in early ‘09 to continue this magical mystery tour of classic popular music. The Retro Universe music menu for the new year includes: Hot Chocolate, Fox, The Waitresses, Sailor, Big Country, Buggles, Nick Lowe, Dave Edmunds, Captain Sensible, Melissa Manchester, S.O.S. Band, Til Tuesday, Georgia Satellites, Climie Fisher (& Naked Eyes), JoBoxers, Mi-Sex, Army Of Lovers, Haysi Fantayzee, The Ritchie Family, Venetians, Ram Jam, Gary Wright, QED/Jenny Morris, Johnny Hates Jazz, Industry, Del Amitri, Tenpole Tudor, Jellyfish, Bucks Fizz, The Reels, Underworld, Sparks, De Barge, Wild Cherry, Candi Staton, Adam & The Ants, Sunnyboys and…well, you get the idea ; )

So leave some room after your Christmas pudding to digest all of that fabulous fare coming soon to Retro Universe. As they say in the classics - stay tuned!

In the interim, I’d like to leave you with something appropriate for this festive season. You may have picked up on the fact that I’m a bit of a Beatles’ fan - both their group efforts, and their solo work. One day, I hope to annoy net surfers with a Beatles blog (but only after I’ve exhausted material for, or feel like a change from, Retro Universe), but for now you’ll have to content yourself with a couple of classic Xmas tunes from Messrs McCartney and Lennon.

‘Wonderful Christmastime’ was released in late ‘79, and credited on the charts to Paul McCartney (UK#6/OZ#61), though it was recorded while Wings were still an active unit at the time, and feature in the promotional video. The song was later included as a bonus track on the CD release of Wings’ ‘Back To The Egg’ album (in my humble opinion the best Wings set of them all - though it was a relative disappointment in commercial terms). ‘Wonderful Christmastime’ isn’t exactly a McCartney classic, but if you’ve consumed enough eggnog, chances are you’ll find yourself happily singing along to its cheery tune.

Happy Xmas (War Is Over) was credited to John & Yoko and the Plastic Ono Band with Harlem Community Choir, and was released (the first time) in time for Christmas ‘71. The song peaked at #3 in the U.S., #4 on the U.K. charts (in ‘72), and #9 in Australia (also for the first time in December ‘72). Deservedly, ‘Happy Xmas (War Is Over)’ has become a staple on radio play lists every festive season. Not only does it serve as a reminder of Lennon’s genius and humanity, but its sentiments are suitably poignant, and uplifting.

Oh, and if you Googled ‘International Dance Like a Giraffe Day’ and found anything interesting, let me know.

Merry Christmas to all, and to all a Good Night! See you all on the flip side in ‘09 ; )

1 comment:

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