[Winter Holidays Week 2 Redux (again)] -- The nice thing about having a year's worth of blog posts is that I can reach back and pluck a choice one from the archives. Such is the case today. In December 2010, I did four straight weeks of music about "Winter Holidays." Two years ago, I did 25 Days of Holiday Music in addition to my usual 80s Flashback posts. So why not re-run a previous Seasons Greetings kind of playlist? To learn, or remember, what stocking stuffers I shared two years ago this week, read and hear more after the break.
Flashback #1: "Walk out to winter, swear I'll be there. | Chill will wake you, high and dry | You'll wonder why. | Walk out to winter, swear I'll be there. | Chance is buried just below the blinding snow.."
Scotland's Aztec Camera was pretty much a critic's darling in the 80s. They didn't generate many radio hits outside of college stations, but they did have a devoted fanbase. Our first flashback of the day has never been released as a Christmas single, and it hasn't appeared on any holiday albums, but there is no way you can prove to me that it isn't a Christmas tune. Give a listen, and you'll agree that this young man is singing about the hope of this season, a hope that transcends any one religion's viewpoint.
Flashback #2: "She looks around. | There are snowflakes on the ground. | Here comes another lonely Christmas."
Sometimes, we cannot be with loved ones during the holidays. This causes a dichotomy of being sad, and perhaps lonely, during an otherwise festive time. Few bands from the 80s do sad-but-very-nearly-upbeat better than Erasure. And in 1988, they released Crackers International, featuring their mega-hit "Stop!" as well as our second flashback. This one goes out to all our men and women who in the course of serving their country won't be home for Christmas.
Flashback #3: "A choir of children sing their song. | They've practiced all year long."
Last week, the Flashback featured a John Lennon holiday song (albeit by 80s artists, The Alarm). If he had recorded a another one, I would feature it this week (to honor the 30th anniversary of his death). But he didn't. However, his former Beatles writing partner, Paul McCartney, released his own Christmas single eight years after Lennon's "Happy Xmas (War Is Over)". Now, this song was actually released in 1979, and it never charted in the U.S., but during the 80s it garnered enough popularity that it is now a classic that is played year after year. I sincerely hope you are having ... a wonderful Christmas time.
Even during the holiday season, Flashbacks follow the rule of Three Wise Men. Or is that wise guys? Either way, three shall be the recalling of Flashbacks, and the number of Flashbacks shall be three! Dedicated 80s-philes can find more flashbacks in the archives. As always, your comments are welcome on today's, or any other, flashback post. And if you like what I'm doing here, please share the link with your friends. If, however, you don't like the flashback, feel free to share it with your enemies.
I'll see you in seven!