I was originally planning to feature Elton John’s Christmas themed B-side, ‘Ho! Ho! Ho! (Who’d Be A Turkey At Christmas)’, and feature this story, written by my 6 year old daughter about our family vacation.
Almost every time I went out of the cabin I saw chickens! My sister always gets bitten by something on the last day we are there. Two holidays ago she was bitten by a turkey and last week she got bitten by a donkey!
But the song isn’t one of John’s best, so instead I’m widening the definition of ‘B-side’ a little this week. I know that it technically means a song on a flip side of the single, but I think it’s fair that it also encompasses other non-album material, like bonus tracks on expanded editions of albums or songs tucked away on various artist compilations.
In 1991, Shoes’ Jeff Murphy organised a compilation of Christmas songs from alternative rock acts. Despite a couple of big names like Matthew Sweet and Butch Vig’s Spooner, most of the acts on Yuletunes are relatively obscure.
Shoes had been active since the mid 1970s, a power pop band from Zion, Illinois. Despite being best known for their 1977 album Black Vinyl Shoes, the group soldiered on into the 1990s. ‘This Christmas’ isn’t the most profound Christmas song ever written – it’s simply a pretty tune with a sweet lead vocal and nice harmonies. Which is preferable to hearing ‘Snoopy’s Christmas’ or ‘Santa Baby’ for the thousandth time.
Things’ll get better Doesn’t seem like it now But they always do I hope you find yourself someone this Christmas The heart is a river It carries you up as it takes you down I hope you find yourself someone this Christmas How often we’re lonely In need of a place to leave the pain When Christmas surrounds us We see the snow replace the rain Love is so brittle Like a new toy that’s ruined It gets thrown away I hope you find yourself someone this Christmas How often we’re only In need of a place to leave the pain We’re anxious for Christmas But without love it’s not the same Things’ll get better Doesn’t seem like it now But they always do I hope you find yourself someone this Christmas I hope you find yourself someone this Christmas I hope you get just what you want this Christmas I hope you find yourself, I hope you find yourself I hope you get just what you want this Christmas I hope you find yourself someone this Christmas I hope you get just what you want this Christmas I hope you find yourself someone this Christmas
Graham Fyfe is probably the only music blogger to appreciate Neil Diamond and Ariana Grande. Aphoristic Album Reviews features reviews and blog posts across a growing spectrum of popular music.
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Aphoristic Album Reviews is almost entirely written by one person.
Graham Fyfe is probably the only music blogger to appreciate both Neil Diamond and Ariana Grande. Based in Fleet Street (New Zealand), he's been writing this blog since around 2000. Aphoristic Album Reviews features reviews and blog posts across a growing spectrum of popular music.
Read about the discographies of musical acts from the 1960s to the present day. Browse this site's review archives or enjoy these random selections:
As time has gone on, music has splintered further into sub-genres. Technology has allowed anyone with the inclination to make and release an album, and it’s also easier for music fans to focus their attention on a single obscure sub-genre. It’s possible that someone’s making great music in their room, […]
I was born in 1979, in Lower Hutt New Zealand. I grew up in a household where the main music was bagpipes and Christian radio. When I discovered pop music at the age of 12 it was new and exciting, and vintage acts like Simon and Garfunkel and The Beatles […]
The Talking Heads started out playing in legendary New York club CBGB, effectively the focal point for American New Wave; The Ramones, Television, Patti Smith Group, and Blondie also launched their careers there. While these groups all came from the same place and time, they’re a diverse bunch, and Talking Heads have […]
Detroit’s Marshall Crenshaw doesn’t belong in the conversation of the most important musicians of his generation. Yet he’s a talented craftsman, whose deft guitar pop is likeable and accessible. He’s often compared with Buddy Holly, and his 1982 debut album certainly feels like Holly updated for the new wave. Crenshaw […]
Formed around former Box Tops lead singer Alex Chilton and Chris Bell, Big Star existed for a brief period of time in the early 1970s. They were spectacularly unsuccessful during their lifetime due to poor promotion and distribution. But their influence has spread far and wide – the group have […]
I add new blog posts to this website every week. Browse the archives or enjoy these random selections:
Brisbane’s The Go-Betweens are one of my favourite bands, but it’s sometimes difficult to explain their appeal. Robert Forster and Grant McLennan are limited as guitarists and vocalists, but they balance each other beautifully; the edgier Forster was a fan of The Velvet Underground, while McLennan was a fan of […]
California’s Tom Waits is effectively the patron saint of this website. My Waits album ranking was the first post from this site to become popular, and it’s still one of its most-visited posts. With recently accounted reissues of Waits’ peak albums, it feels like a good time to make a […]
The late John Martyn never enjoyed the mass acclaim that his immense talent deserved. Nonetheless, he delivered a string of great records in the 1970s and early 1980s. He started as a folk artist, emerging in the late 1960s alongside Nick Drake and Richard Thompson. By the early 1970s, Martyn […]
New York rock band Talking Heads started their career as the Artistics, with drummer Chris Frantz and vocalist/guitarist David Byrne. As the group were unable to find a bassist, Frantz’s girlfriend Tina Weymouth joined – she learned to play bass by listening to Suzi Quatro records. The trio played at […]
Kate Bush exploded into popular music with her first single, 1978’s ‘Wuthering Heights’. She became the first artist to have an entirely self-penned number-one single in the UK, and she achieved this milestone while she was still a teenager. ‘Wuthering Heights’ is still Bush’s signature track, inspiring the annual event […]
Jeff Buckley is best known for his sensitive reading of Leonard Cohen’s ‘Hallelujah’. It’s well done, but taken alone it undersells Buckley’s immense talents. Far more than a crooner, he was also a talented guitarist and a sophisticated songwriter – other artists were capable of a lovely cover of ‘Hallelujah’, […]