18 would-be Christmas classics, including Evelyn Christmas Gene Marshall; Santa Came on a Nuclear Missile Heather Noel; Christmas Time Philosophy Norris the Troubador, and more.
What do you get that obsessive music geek with the record collection that threatens to overrun the house for the holidays? American Song-Poem Christmas, of course--even if he or she collects song-poem recordings, theres no way he or she has all of these 21 songs. "Song-poems," of course, are rare, privately-pressed records that were sort of a scam in their 1970s heyday--companies lured people to send in lyrics and cash to record "hits" and what the would-be Lennon-and-McCartneys got in return was a few copies of a song composed and arranged off-the-cuff to the poems theyd mailed in. The best of the songs on this collection--"Santa Came On A Nuclear Missile," "The Rocking Disco Santa Claus," "Evelyn Christmas," "Maury, The Christmas Mouse" and "Randy, The Lil Elf" among them--are accidental art with the same outsider charm one finds in Jim Shaws Thrift Store Paintings project. The songs on this record have incredibly awkward rhyme schemes and sound like some sort of alien karaoke beamed from the past--but in a good way! Once you start, its very hard to stop listening to American Song-Poem Christmas, one of the most interesting, and bizarrely uplifting, holiday albums ever collected. --Mike McGonigal