Christmas in Verse, 2021

Timeless Christmas poems by ALFRED, LORD TENNYSON, DOLLIE RADFORD, ROBERT SOUTHWELL, et al. plus Christmas music videos featuring THE POGUES, THE PRETENDERS, THE ROYAL GUARDSMEN, THE SALSOUL ORCHESTRA and THE SUPREMES.
by David McGee
 

 
 

‘How Inexpressibly Sad Are All Holidays’

1863. HENRY WADSWORTH LONGFELLOW's wife had died in a fire, his son had been seriously wounded in the Civil War. The poet, in despair, still found a reason to believe and wrote the stanzas that later became a beloved seasonal s...
by David McGee
 

 

 

A Christmas Dialogue Continues

Consider Classic as the next installment of Martina McBride’s ongoing dialogue with Christmas, and a fairly scintillating one at that. It earns its title.
by David McGee
 

 
 

A Half-Century+ of Classic Animated ‘Rudolph’

On Dec. 6, 1964 NBC premiered an animated version of RUDOLPH THE RED-NOSED REINDEER with BURL IVES as host. It drew a 50 share and was an instant holiday classic. From a 50 share to 50+ years as a holiday staple, we pay tribute...
by David McGee
 

 

 

The First Christmas Stamps

It may seem like Christmas stamps have been around pretty much forever in some form, but in fact the U.S. did not issue a Yuletide stamp until 1962. Canada, in 1889, beat everyone to the punch with its Queen Victoria-approved C...
by David McGee
 

 
 

A Classic Restored

Long unavailable on these shores in CD form, a Christmas classic from GLEN CAMPBELL, 1968's THAT CHRISTMAS FEELING, has finally been reissued by Capitol Nashville. Noel!
by David McGee
 

 

 

‘I WONDER AS I WANDER’

STORIES BEHIND THE SONGS: JOHN JACOB NILES's own account of writing 'I Wonder As I Wander,' plus an online discussion of the meaning of 'on'ry' in the first verse.
by David McGee
 

 
 

A Christmas Classic For A Nuclear Armageddon

A seasonal classic born of an interfaith couple’s mutual concern for the fate of the world during the Cuban missile crisis in 1962. The origin story of 'DO YOU HEAR WHAT I HEAR?'
by David McGee
 

 

 

Christmas Blues with a Positive Spin

Appraising a Yuletide gem from Carolina beach music legend, soul veteran CLIFFORD CURRY, and a look back at Curry's interesting career.
by David McGee
 

 
 

A Bluer Shade of Christmas

An update of our 2019 review of four essential Christmas blues anthologies: Volumes 1-3 of BLUES, BLUES CHRISTMAS and Legacy Recordings' DEATH MIGHT BE YOUR SANTA CLAUS.--a bluer shade of Christmas, if you will.
by David McGee
 

 

 

Cuddle Time

This delectable five-song missive--an unassuming but undeniably moving seasonal communiqué--is an affecting followup to Ms. Smith's 2007 Christmas gem, My Holiday.
by David McGee
 

 
 

The Real Christmas Miracle

JASON RINGENBERG may have taken to farming but he hasn't left his rock 'n' roll years behind him. He's back with a Yuletide gem outfitted with flourishes of punk and straight ahead rock 'n' roll that recalls his glory years fro...
by David McGee