This time of year (one family party in the bag, one to go) everyone seems to come out with lists. Best of Lists. End of the Year Lists. Gift Idea Lists.
Here's mine, carefully crafted in my head as I headed downstate on Saturday for Family Christmas Party 2008 No. 1:
My list of "The Best Christmas Music That Rocks and Is Not Too Annoying."
This music can be considered to be green, as far as its Christmas-y tone. I haven't examined the carbon footprint of any of these artists. Also, if you (legally) download the music, I guess you're saving fossil fuel and jewel cases.
1. Twisted Sister --- A Twisted Christmas. Anyone who thought Dee Snider and the boys were out of hits, think again. This is a fun bunch of familiar songs. You can sing along and bang your head. A fave: "Oh Come All Ye Faithful," which is done to the tune of "We're Not Gonna Take It." Plus, Twisted Sister totally deserves a few bucks for the holidays, more than your postal carrier.
2. Merry Axemas, No. 1 and No. 2. --- Cool, instrumental holiday rockers you can play around your parents or conservative house guests. Turn it up, it's OK. You're still celebrating the birth of Jesus, just a little more loudly. "Rudolph" done by Kenny Wayne Shepherd (tribute video). What more do you need? How about "Blue Christmas" by Joe Perry? I'm pretty sure he's playing this one with a lit cigarette sticking out of his guitar.
3. OK. The holidays aren't complete without Elvis. In fact, if you don't play an Elvis Christmas CD at least once during the holidays, I think Santa should skip your house. But which one to get? Take my word for it. Get "If Every Day Was Like Christmas," the one that combines the 50s Christmas songs with the 70s Christmas songs. Beautiful. "Silver Bells" and "Santa Claus is Back in Town." Alternate tracks. Tell them Green Mullet sent you.
4. "The Ventures' Christmas Album." All instrumental. Surfer music that turns into Christmas songs then back into surfer music. Killer. And if you saw these guys at the Rock N' Roll Hall of Fame induction, you know they're the real thing.
5. This list is in no particular order, by the way, or Elvis would be at the top. So No. 5 is "Christmas Gumbo" by Fats Domino. Is he heavy metal? No, does he play a mean clinky piano? Definitely. Some great new Christmas songs here. I'm glad they rescued this guy from the flooding in New Orleans. Blueberry Effin' Hill.
Maybe more later. The holidays are too crazy to list 10 CDs, for now. My dog and cat are tying to destroy the Christmas tree. My kids are running in circles. I have to be at another holiday party in 43 minutes.
- Green Mullet.