23 December 2011

Music Video Friday: The Twelve Days Of Christmas

As a special Christmas gift to you, I am offering you this post without links. If you don't understand a reference, you'll have to look it up yourself. I promise to give you just enough information to drive you crazy. Consider this post your Official Time Killer at work today. No need to thank me.

Today's music is one of the most ubiquitous and notorious Christmas songs ever introduced to humanity. It is beloved by children because of the game-type aspect (How many days can I remember this year?) and loathed by adults because it is so repetitive and, quite frankly, boring (Oh. Em. GEE! This song has been going on for FOUR HOURS!!!).

And because I love you all so much, I'm presenting you with not one but TWO different versions!

What makes these both extra special, and what ties them together, is that they both feature a solo artist singing with a group. I think that formula helps to break up the monotony of the song. The caliber of talent doesn't hurt much, either.

The first rendition is from Bing Crosby and The Andrew Sisters. It was recorded in 1951 and is, in my most honest and humble opinion, the best recording of this song EVAH! First, Bing Crosby is to Christmas music as William Shakespeare is to tragic comedies. Don't try to argue that; it is a universal truth like the Law Of Gravity or the Rule Of One. Second, the vocal mastery of the Andrew Sisters is in full force. Just listen to the way they effortlessly switch from solos to singing in unison to tight three-part harmony. I defy you to find any vocal artists who can do this with such comfort and ease (and, yes, that includes The Manhattan Transfer, Take 6, and Rockapella ... not even close). Third, the arrangement here makes each verse unique so that, even though it's the same friggin' melody for three-and-a-half minutes, it's fresh every time.

The second rendition comes from two of my favorite performers, The Muppets and John Denver. It was recorded in 1979 as part of a Christmas television special, which you can still purchase today if you look around online. Why is this recording so special? Oh, c'mon now. It's John Denver, one of the purest vocalists I've ever known in my lifetime who, coincidentally, never took himself too seriously. And it's The Muppets, for Pete's sake! What these lovable characters lack in vocal talent, they more than make up for in hysterical entertainment.

I'm certain that there are other versions out there that would stack fairly well against either of these: this song has been recorded too many times for there not to be. I challenge you to post your favorite in the comments section.

'Tis the season to be giving and all.

16 December 2011

Music Video Friday: I Hate My Job By JbDubs

I know. It's December. Christmas is just around the corner. The air has a briskness about it. A certain DC radio station has been playing 'round-the-clock holiday music since Thanksgiving. You are all expecting me to post Christmas music over the next two weeks.

Well, I had planned to do so. But last night happened. See, last night was Cobalt's 3rd Annual Employee Show. As is tradition, there was an awful lot of trainwrecking going on. But there were also a few diamonds. One particular number caught my attention. It wasn't the cleanest choreography I'd ever seen, but it was cool. And that infectious song that I couldn't quite make out was ... infectious.

Now maybe it's because I wrote the initial draft of this post in the early moments of the morning and my brain isn't firing on all cylinders, but it took me a friggin' long time to figure out what the blasted song was. (The sound quality didn't help much either.)

But I found it!!!

And, lucky you, I'm sharing it with you this week!

It's by this musical artist by the name of JbDubs who is ... well ... he's a musical artist who performs music. Honestly, I don't know the first thing about him or his music. But this song! This song is poetry!
I hate my boss. I hate my coworkers. I hate my job.
All snark aside, who hasn't thought this at least once in their life?

(You, in the back there, put your hand down and shut up. No one wants to hear about your perfect life.)

Okay fine. Here's some Christmas music. Happy now?

02 December 2011