It will probably come as no surprise to most of you that Julian loves Christmas music. Starting sometime around mid-November, he has the Christmas music stations playing on Pandora and can't sleep without the dulcet tones of Bing Crosby crooning White Christmas*. So since I am surrounded by the stuff, I figured I should resurrect the Christmas/Chanukah music blogging (or even, you know, resurrect the blogging full stop).
So let's start things off this year with El Vez rocking out to an xmas classic
This is a perfect way for me to get the ball rolling as it allows me to casually mention that one thing I did this year was direct a staged reading of If I Were You And Other Elvis Presley Songs by Leah Roth Barsanti, a play about a teenage boy who dreams of becoming an Elvis impersonator- it isn't arrogance on my part to say it was fantastic as all the brilliance was due to Leah and the extremely talented actors with whom we were lucky to work. But, even without that, this is a really excellent way to kick off the holidays because what could be more American an Elvis influenced, punk rock interpretation of a Jose Feliciano classic?
*A few years back, we all watched Holiday Inn because we thought it would get us into the holiday spirit. We were unprepared for the creepiness of it all and outdated gender messages (at least they cut the blackface from the broadcast we watched). This film about two rivals, in business and in love, was just annoying and even though we were quite obviously supposed to be shipping Jim and Linda (sure, Linda, give up that big Hollywood film contract to perform on your husband's farm in Connecticut!), both Ted and Jim were such manipulative jerks, Linda would have been better off without either of them. And people say Love, Actually is sexist and awful? At least an argument can be made that Love, Actually is a subversive film-it pretends to be a sweet rom-com, but most of the men are useless drains on the women in their lives who they either ignore or fetishize or abuse--I think the only men in the film who aren't awful are Peter and Karl (neither of whom do much as they are not the stars of their vignettes), Joe (who doesn't interact with women as that is not the point of that vignette), Daniel (who was mourning), and Sam (who was fourteen). And, yeah, I will grant you that John (Martin Freeman) is fairly innocuous, but that vignette seemed to be more of a space filler (as evidenced by the fact that vignette often gets cut from most broadcasts and the emotional impact of the film remains in tact). Oh, and then there is Rowan Atkinson's character, Rufus, but according to Wikipedia he was a Christmas Angel, so technically not a man. Alright, yes, I admit it, I love Love, Actually even though I also agree with this and this: