Wednesday, December 02, 2009

two songs, must be santa by dylan and a wassailing song are reminding me that it is what you make it. we've got lights now; this is probably because my wife got a coupon and went & spent it on some decor. good move, since that stuff will be gone in a few days, sold out. same with the tree; in spite of being in the busy time of year, we'd better keep our eyes on the town's tree supply, or we'll have to drive across the countryside, just to get a couple of weeks of tree in our living room.

as for the songs, i just liked the dylan one, wanted to save it; it's got dylan himself with a wig, a kind of outsider, but he's not really the singer or even much of a performer, besides opening a couple of bottles. what's with the wig? it's a curious movie to me, maybe because i don't watch many, but also don't expect to see dylan in something like this. with the wassail song, we're doing a wassail song (performing this weekend at the unitarian, hope you can make it) and i was genuinely curious what "wassail" was all about. i should have known...or maybe, did know, but didn't trust myself really to have remembered. the thing about these christmas songs is, they're a kind of culture in and of themselves; there are hundreds that we identify as 'christmas'; what do they have in common? how does one take what is important about culture and pass it along to others? this is a question i wrestle with. i'd like to make youtubes like dylan, but do them in my own way; i admire this one, obviously.

while i'm on the topic of youtubes, btw, got acquainted with the service while facebook-bombing a niece who turned 19; sent her lots of my favorites from the 60's, but i'm surprised actually, how much is on there, yet some things, like my favorite christmas album of all time, by odetta, not on there. at least, not as far as i can tell. and there are pages & pages of odetta, and apparently she just died, very charismatic, like miriam makeba, one of the best of all time. but the album i have in mind, was an old cassette in bad condition in our house; i'm angling for a new one, maybe, for christmas, as it was superb, musically. we'd put on that old gospel whenever we decorated the tree, just about every year. the closest i can find, really, is here, but more is coming, i promise. this kind of direction is one i'm interested in.

half the time, i play with a band; we're good, and sometimes we do christmas music. other times i play with our quaker meeting, and we're a little more erratic (actually the band could be described as that also)...but, we play songs like this...while i'm at it, i want to say, i need to keep this stuff, keep track of it, write down the words, put it in one place...and might do it on the band webpage, which is badly in need of updating anyway...

it's a busy time. a calendar is in the works, and a book of stories. a semseter is ending. lights must go up, then a tree; deco must come out. it's been raining for days. kids are having concerts; finals are coming; things must be done at work. a semester is wrapping up, i'm thinking of everyone while i drive, but playing, as usual, christmas music & african. soon i'll go over to celtic. it's only appropriate. there's only so much time in this world. then it's spring, and it's over. here's some non-christmas, holiday cheer.

jane fowlis, still the best
cat mother and the oll night newsboys
question mark and the mysterions
strawberry alarm clock
don't walk away renee
afel bocoum, of course, the king


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