Every year, Sunny starts playing non-stop, 24/7 Christmas tunes by the end of November. You can pretty much bet that by the time you hop in the car after Thanksgiving dinner that Perry Como will be riding shotgun with you up to the gas station for smokes until the after Christmas. I just spent an hour at my desk, listening to Sunny 99.1.
Thursday afternoon, we buckled down and listened to the stations online audio stream for a full hour of awkward holiday bliss so you don't have to. Think of it as our public service.
Every year, it's best to do a whole hour of Christmas music just to flush out your system. It's like an enema for your brain, while also inoculating you for the next month of fa-la-la-la-la-fail to come. Flu shots be damned, I'll take Johnny Mathis and Amy Grant any day.
With each passing year, my perception of the hour of Christmas jams has changed, from angry and pious, to catty and shitty, and then riddled with frustration. Maybe it's called acceptance and growing up, but this year may be our last doing this to ourselves. It's time to pass the torch and let someone else get Christmas on their shoes.
2012: Right Fucking Now
And of course, no one stepped in to do this but me this year, which means that this is Year 5 with the blessed Christmas music melting into my ears over an afternoon. At this point I would like to think of it as a yearly holiday party with myself, but with clothes on.
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It's a time for me to enjoy my company with a cup of coffee, my desk fan blowing in face, while me and I reflect on the past 11 months of being us. How dare Sunny 99.1 rip and tear me away from making my Best Albums of 2012 list like every other shut-in sad music writer in America? I didn't even think the Frank Ocean album was that special.
Robin Rock is pumping up the volume this afternoon on Sunny. Luckily, the weather in Houston has cooperated to make listening to Christmas music bearable. Earlier, I saw a woman in a Rudolph costume walking down the street in front of the office.
"You're a Mean One, Mr. Grinch" kicks us off this year. I wish Thurl Ravenscroft cursed more in this song. It would really drive the point home that this dude was an outcast green bastard bent on stealing Chritsmas. Also, what was the Grinch? What kind of animal?
"Joy To the World" by Mannheim Steamroller. The name of the group always bothered me more than the music. It could be this great metal band name, but instead your grandparents put on this dusty disc at every holiday on repeat until you steal the rest of their pain meds from their bathroom cabinet.
"Twelve Days of Christmas" by Perry Como, who would have been 100 years old this past May, but he's not. He's dead. Once called the "King of Casual" by Bing Crosby, he never lived to see the Snuggy.
Jesus, "All I Want For Christmas Is You" by Mariah Carey, I was worried I would only hear you once this afternoon. I think I can listen to this song all year long, and not because I imagine a young, hot, lithe Mariah Carey in velvety Christmas getup cavorting under a giant lighted tree with bottles of whiskey as ornaments, either.
Same goes for "Frosty the Snowman" from Jimmy Durante. But I didn't spend my formative teenage years masturbating to Jimmy Durante. There are not enough crooners like Durante anymore, people who get by on more less being drunk and near a microphone where an orchestra might be.
Speaking of crooners, here comes "The Christmas Song" by Michael Buble, off last year's massive-selling and appropriately titled Christmas album, which sold more copies than most every other record in 2011, making it the year's second best-selling. Yes, Adele was No. 1.
I am starting to think all these songs have been compressed and edited to be shorter than usual. That, or I have just gotten used to long drawn-out bullshit on a regular basis, and not these sexy, built-for-speed holiday cuts. They feel like they go by within the blink of an eye. Just like the holidays. Awwwwwwwwwwwwww.
Oh look, "Sleigh Ride" by Johnny Mathis, a man whose albums infest thrift-store LP bins like roaches in Montrose apartments. I kid.
"Christmas Canon" from Trans-Siberian Orchestra. Why doesn't the TSO make songs all year round, like for the Super Bowl and Easter?
Stevie Wonder sings about "Silver Bells," but how does he know they are silver? Aha.
"Happy Xmas (War Is Over)" by John Lennon is has gotten less happy and more depressing to me as the years go by. It must be Lennon's animated emoting.
And the award for Whitest Christmas Song Ever goes to "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen/We Three Kings" by Barenaked Ladies and Sarah McLachlan. Free puppies for all!
The station ID break just said that they are broadcasting from the North Pole. Man, I bet that was expensive to move everyone up north for a few months. Terrestrial radio has deeper pockets than we all thought. What a scam.
"I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus" from John Mellencamp is nearly unintelligible. "Ehr sawr Mammar kerssing that Sanner Cawws" is more like it.
HOMESTRETCH. I am on my last five minutes.
Amy Grant is 52 years old? When did that happen? Oh, damn you, Vince Gill for marrying her and sucking the life out of her. She needs a pop renaissance.
My annual hour of holiday tunes ends fittingly with "Mary, Did You Know?" by Rascal Flatts. Rascal Fartts. Rascal Fatts. Rascal Crapps. Raggle Fraggle.
Is it January yet??
It can't end like this. It won't.
Here comes Burl Ives to close me out, old-fashioned way with "Holly Jolly Christmas."
Thank you, fat Christmas angel.
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