Friday, December 19, 2014

Self Help Radio 121914: A Very Self Help Radio Christmas 2014

(Original image here)

Another year, another collection of Christmas tunes, some weird, some faithful to the originals.  In-between, I talk about whether Christmas really is Jesus' birthday, I talk to my spiritual advisor the Rev. Dr. Howard Gently, I talk to David Fruchter about his book I Found Santa, & Tania sends in a Christmas song just for the show.  It's like a cheap Christmas present you might like, though you wanted something else.

It's over at the Self Help Radio website.  Pay attention to Scrooge-like login & password information.  The songs I played are below.

Happy Christmas or whatever holiday you celebrate!

(part one)

"Christmas Alphabet/White Christmas" Günter Kallmann Choir _Christmas Sing In_
"Merry Christmas To The Drunks, Merry Christmas To The Lovers" Ballboy _Merry Christmas To The Drunks, Merry Christmas To The Lovers_
"Rudolph, The Red-Nosed Reindeer" U.S. Arm Band _Rudolph, The Red-Nosed Reindeer_

"12 Days Of (Hipster) Christmas" Tea Kettles _Christmas EP_
"Reggae Christmas Eve In Transylvania" Count Floyd _Count Floyd_
"I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus" Johnny Farnham _I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus_
"The Story Of Santa Claus" Sam Ulano _The Story Of Santa Claus_

"Santa Baby" The Dollyrots _A Dollyrots Christmas EP_
"The Christmas Song" Erasure _Snow Globe_
"Am I Too Old For Christmas?" The Ashes _Mint 400 Records: A Very Merry Christmas Compilation_
"Here Comes Santa Claus" Louis Aguilar _Les Meilleurs Morceaux De Noël_
"The Christmas Song" Lead Belly _Complete Recorded Works, Vol. 2 (1940-1943)_

"George & Andrew" The Boy Least Likely To _Christmas Special_
"Last Christmas" From Bubblegum To Sky _Eenie Meenie Holiday Mix 2013_

(part two)

"Happy Xmas (War Is Over)" Cranes _O Come All Ye Faithful: Rock For Choice_
"Christmas Parade" Al Terry _Country Christmas_
"I Fell Out Of A Christmas Tree" Little Rita Faye _I Fell Out Of A Christmas Tree_

"Countdown To Christmas Party Time" The Three Wise Men _Thanks For Christmas_
"Lonely Hearts Club Christmas Party" The Love Machine _Spin into Christmas_
"The Little Drummer Boy" The Do Re Mi Children's Chorus _The Little Drummer Boy_
"Xmas Everyday (For My Kids)" Those Dreaded Gnats _A Dreaded Xmas - More Xmas Negatives_

 "Low Spirits" Benjamin Bearclaw _I May Be Lost But I'm Laughing_
"A Very Sorry Christmas" The New Mendicants _A Very Sorry Christmas_
"Blue Christmas" Seymour Swine & The Squealers _Blue Christmas_
"Christmas Vs. Saturnalia" Tania Rivas _Christmas Vs. Saturnalia_

"Alla Pastorale (Christmas Music)" Ottavio Dogali, Giuseppe Napoli & Giuseppe Ascani _The Italian Treasury: Calabria_
"Talking Christmas Goodwill Blues" John Wesley Harding _God Made Me Do It: The Christmas EP_

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Whither A Very Self Help Radio Christmas 2014?

Yes, my annual Christmas show is happening tomorrow morning from 7 to 9am on 88.1 fm in Lexington & online at wrfl dot fm.  I'll put it up later on the website, like I do.

You may think: Christmas has come early!

Or you may think: I'm sick of all this Christmas music already!

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

My Christmas

If I don't seem to take the Christmas holidays terribly seriously, it's because I don't really celebrate them.  I think it's wonderful there's a time when family comes together, & I think it's wonderful there's a time when children get presents they've been anticipating for a while.  But I'm not a Christian, so the religious aspects of the holiday are lost on me, & I don't have children, so there's no emphasis on gift-giving.

In fact, I live when a cheapskate who, if I were to buy her something she didn't want or need, would snottily say to me, "You spent money on that?"

As for family - well, she goes home to be with her family, while I long ago stopped going home for Christmas.  My family unit is basically organized around my mother.  Virtually none of my siblings speak to one another or spend time with each other outside of events involving my mother.  So, her birthday, Thanksgiving, & Christmas.  Otherwise, we simply don't communicate with one another.  I have literally not spoken to any of my four brothers in years.  (My two sisters & I communicate pretty regularly, however.)

I do like Christmas music, though.  Much like experiencing adventure or romance through a movie or a song, I experience a kind of emotionally-heightened fictitious Christmas through its music.  Imagine a world with peace & love!  Imagine a family that loves one another & enjoys spending time together!  What a beautiful dream!

I've probably talked too much about my family here.  I'm not saddened by our lack of closeness, but I think I understand it.  My mother somehow inculcated in us a belief that we were the best thing that ever happened in the universe as well as a certainty that we were in competition with the world, including our own siblings.  How can you be close to someone who is basically your foe?

In this sense, there's a part of my siblings that believe they're like the stock Ayn Rand hero: perfect & right the way they are, & waiting for the moment when the world comes around to realizing their greatness.  That the world hasn't should be troubling for them - but so far, it doesn't appear that way.

It was troubling to me, so early on I called bullshit on it.  (To be fair, my sisters were never much that way with the brothers, but to this day, they compete with one another, mainly for my mother's stingy, judgmental affection.)

In any event - I stress about Christmas because I know it makes my mother sad that I don't attend.  I am saddened that she must be aware - is she? - that when she's no longer around, there'll be no apron strings to keep the family together, & there'll be no more family gatherings.  I often note that the next time I'll see my brothers will be at my mother's funeral.  & that that will be the last time as well.

But I do like Christmas music, so I do a Christmas show!

Should I have saved this for tomorrow?  Ah well.  I was up late doing a radio show in the wee hours & I'm loopy from lack of sleep.  Time to nap a bit.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014


Not only are they anagrams!
According to this article, Georgia pastor Edward Carothers, who runs the church in the photo (do pastors run churches? what's the proper verb?), "Santa Claus is robbing Christ of his glory."

"It's [Jesus'] birthday, it's not Santa's birthday," he says.

Of course, December 25th isn't really Jesus' birthday.  Pastor Carothers surely must know this, as the bible doesn't mention what date Jesus was born.  It would be nice, actually, if he were curious about when his savior was born.  Rather than put up a ridiculous sign designed entirely to irk people & get himself on the local news (which it did), he could have just used an online search engine to find articles like this one, which uses actual scholarship to show how, for example, early Christians didn't actually celebrate Jesus' birth until centuries after his death.

That's a better read - the article here - than the sensationalism of a desperate clergyman.  But provocative is fun!  Especially during the holiday season!

Monday, December 15, 2014

'Tis The Season

I know Christmas is nearly two weeks away, but my show this week is the only show I'll do before the holiday, & it's going to be another Very Self Help Radio Christmas.  It should be pretty damned embarrassing.