Saturday, December 08, 2007

Saturday 8 December 2007

I missed a call yesterday, from Claire Smith at The Scotsman looking for a quote about Christmas records. I was gutted because I LOVE Christmas records and I've got plenty to say on the subject.

By the time I got in touch with her the piece had been done. I'd sent her a list of my all-time 10 favoruite christmas tunes and she said, "Shame I didn't get your list earlier - it's far cooler and quirkier than the one that ended up in the paper."

For the record, my Top 10 favourite Christmas tracks, as at 8 December 2007, are:

1. Darlene Love - Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)
2. The Waitresses - Christmas Wrapping (long version)
3. Alma Cogan - Never Do A Tango With An Eskimo
4. Eels - Everything's Gonna Be Cool This Christmas
5. Fountains of Wayne - I Want An Alien For Christmas
6. The Cocteau Twins - Frosty The Snowman
7. Teenage Fanclub - Jesus Christ
8. Shonen Knife - Space Christmas
9. St. Etienne - I Was Born On Christmas Day
10. Rufus Wainwright - Spotlight On Christmas

Last night I wiled away a few hours downloading some more newly-discovered seasonal tunes; The Raveonettes, Reigning Sound, Sonic Youth and Death Cab for Cutie amongst others. I don't know if any of them will make my Top 10 list by this time next year (mainly because I haven't listened to them yet) but it was good to find new stuff because I'm always looking for new Christmas records. I've got to the stage where I don't even mind hearing Wham, Slade and Wizzard. Cliff Richard? Well, he's a different kettle of crap.

I reminded Claire not to forget about me when it comes to Eurovision time either.

When I e-mailed Claire I mentioned that there's definitely a gap in the market for a quality Scottish Christmas record. Forget Auld Lang Syne or Cliff's bastardisation of it as part of The Millennium Prayer (I still can't believe that he actually called himself a "genius" for putting the Lord's Prayer and Auld Land Syne together), a decent Scottish Christmas tune would shift units for years and years. Even the mainstream Scottish acts like Texas, Deacon Blue and Travis haven't, to the best of my knowledge, relased a Christmas single. Sort it out guys! Anything to rid this country of the indelible images of Fran and Anna and piss poor episodes of "Only An Excuse" during the festive season.

Talking of "Only An Excuse", I've come to realise that the three words I hate hearing on television, apart from "Strictly Come Dancing" are "BBC Scotland Comedy". A bigger waste of money there has never been. They also always seem to be Glasgow-based. I can't believe there are no budding comedy writers elsewhere in Scotland. Maybe it's another one of these closed shops whereby you have to know someone to get your foot in the door.


Sky Clearbrook said...

Saint Etienne have recorded tons of Christmas tunes over the years, mainly for their fan club only releases, but my favourite is one of the other tracks from the I Was Born On Christmas Day EP - their cover of Billy Fury's My Christmas Prayer is a thing of haunting beauty.

I'm also with you on BBC Scotland comedies. Back in the day, I used to love A Kick Up The Eighties, Laugh??? I Nearly Paid My Licence Fee and Naked Video, but I bet if you saw them now, they'd be every bit as excrutiating as Chewin' The Fat (and all its associated spin offs) and Only An Excuse - BBC Scotland's official Scotch and Wry replacement.

I hate when people (especially East-Coasters) say, "Gonnae no dae that?". I drives me up the fucking wall. Total fucking bollocks.

Beth said...

"Baby Jesus, Born to Rock!"

You can't beat it.

I am also very partial to Alan Parsons in a Winter Wonderland by Grandaddy, from the same xfm compilation.

Valentine Suicide said...

Alan Parsons in a Winter Wonderland by Grandaddy is fantastic! That Waitresses song makes me want to kill though..

Anonymous said...

Cool list, personally I'm quite partial to that Badly Drawn Boy Christmas song (Donna and Blixten?). I don't like Chewin the Fat or Still Game much, but viewing figures and cultural impact suggests they're very popular. So the BBC has the ready excuse that they are at least giving the public what they want. The idea of making comedies that appeal to a largely if not exclusively Scottish popular taste is a good and democratic one, even if you disagree with their execution.

Sky Clearbrook said...

There would be nothing wrong with BBC Scotland comedies if, once in a while, they made one which reflected east coast humour.

I hope I don't sound like one of those "hate the Weedgies" types (because I'm not), but there's no balance - it's always Glasgow.

I Am Not The Beatles said...

Not a Chrissy song per se - but I believe it was originally released at Chrissymas :

Nick Cave and Shane McGowan's Wonderful World, is sublime and the best version I've heard.