Booker T. & the MGs “Winter Wonderland” from Christmas in Soulsville (Stax/Concord 2007) —Thanks to Mark Perry for filling in for me last week and doing a fantastic job. - Previously unreleased alternate instrumental version recorded in 1966. You can not go wrong with this soul Christmas compilation.Buy it!
Graham Parker & Nona Hendryx “Soul Christmas” from Ho Ho Ho Spice: A Hospice Awareness And Benefit Projct (Volunteer 2004) —Great soul duet released in 1994. All kinds of soul artists are referenced on this track.Buy it!
Isaac Hayes “Do Your Thing” from Ultimate Isaac Hayes - Can You Dig It? (stax url 2005) —1971 edited-down single version of a song from the Shaft soundtrack. Written by Isaac Hayes.Buy it!
Sam & Dave “I Can't Stand Up for Falling Down” from Stax/Volt - The Complete Singles 1959-1968 (Rhino Atlantic 1991) —Written by Homer Banks and Allen Jones and released in 1967.Buy it!
The Twistin' Kings “Xmas Twist” from The Complete Motown Singles, Vol. 1: 1959-1961 (Hip-O Select / Motown 2004) —Written by Berry Gordy & Barney Ales and recorded in 1961 by this earlier version of the Funk Brothers.Buy it!
Sam & Dave “You Got Me Hummin'” from Stax/Volt - The Complete Singles 1959-1968 - Volume 7 (Rhino Atlantic 2007) —Bonus airplay of Sam & Dave. Hey, completely unplanned but these things happen. Written by Isaac Hayes & David Porter.Buy it!
Candi Staton “I'm Just A Prisoner (Of Your Good Lovin')” from Candi Staton (Honest Jon's 2004) —1969 Muscle Shoals recording written by George Jackson and E.J. Harris and found on this very highly recommended compilation.Buy it!
Edwin Starr “Twenty-Five Miles” from The Best of Edwin Starr (Motown 2001) —Written by John Bristol, Harvey Fuqua & Edwin Starr & released in 1969.Buy it!
Marvin Gaye “Purple Snowflakes” from Motown Christmas (Motown 2008) —Written by Dave Hamilton & Clarence Paul and recorded in 1964. Pretty great.Buy it!
Fitz & the Tantrums “Santa Stole My Lady” (Dangerbird 2010) N —New Christmas single from the L.A.-based band who will be appearing at Blueberry Hill on February 12 (Saturday).Buy it!
Jimmy Smith “Jingle Bells” from Christmas Cookin' (Verve 1992) —Instrumental version recorded in 1964. Jimmy Smith on organ, Quentin Warren on guitar & Billy Hart on drums. And it swings, mightily.Buy it!
Bob Dorough “Blue Xmas” from Cafe Apres-midi Christmas (EMI 2005) —There is a much shorter version that he recorded in 1962 with Miles Davis. I'm not sure when this was recorded but you get 5 1/2 minutes of vitriol about the holiday season in this version. Hey, I like to give people their money's worth.Buy it!
Lambert, Hendricks & Ross “Gimme That Wine” from The Hottest New Group In Jazz (Columbia 1959) —Written by Jon Hendricks & recorded in 1959. "Beat m' head outta shape, but leave my grape."Buy it!
The Chesterfield Kings “Hey, Santa Claus” from Christmas a Go-Go (Wicked Cool Records www.wickedcoolrecords.com 2008) —Found on one of the best Christmas collections from the last several years. It should be -- it was produced by Little Steven.Buy it!
The Infant Kings “The First Noel” from Jingle Up High, Jingle Down Low (Collective Fruit 2010) N —Music bed. Instrumental recorded several years back but just being made widely available this year. Fans of the Ventures Christmas album should really like this. Featuring Jonn Ramberg (Minus Five, The Tripwires) on ukulele, guitar & organ.Buy it!
Jimi Hendrix “Love or Confusion” from West Coast Seattle Boy (Sony 2010) N —Alternate version recorded in 1967. Also featuring Mitch Mitchell on drums & Noel Redding on bass.Buy it!
The Who “Young Man Blues” from Who's Next (expanded version) (MCA 2003) —Live version recorded in 1971 and included on this expanded version.Buy it!
Honey & The Bees “Jing Jing A Ling” from Snow - The Get Easy! Christmas Collection (Universal 2002) —Originally recorded in 1969 for Chess Records and found on volume one of this series of Christmas compilations which is up to three volumes now.Buy it!
The Ventures “Jingle Bell Rock” from The Ventures' Christmas Album (Sundazed 1965) —From their classic 1965 Christmas album.Buy it!
Lisa Mychols “Listen to the Bells Ring” from Lost Winter's Dream (Rev-Ola 2002) —I think this is one of the best five Christmas albums of the last ten years and it has been completely overlooked. Produced & arranged by the Wondermints. Well worth seeking out.Buy it!
Bruce Springsteen “Save My Love” from The Promise (Columbia 2010) N —Previously unreleased recording from the '77/'78 sessions for his Darkness on the Edge of Town album.Buy it!
The Duke And The King “Shaky” from Long Live the Duke and the King (Silva Screen 2010) N —From their 2010 sophomore release.Buy it!
Los Lobos “On Main Street” from Tin Can Trust CD ALBUM (Shout! Factory www.shoutfactory.com 2010) N —From their recommended 2010 release.Buy it!
Marshall Crenshaw “Sock It To Me Santa” (self 2009) —Coming to Off Broadway on January 19 where he will be backed up by the Bottle Rockets (who will also be opening). Highly recommended.Buy it!
Rod Stewart “True Blue” from Never A Dull Moment (Mercury 1972) —1972 song written by Rod Stewart & Ron Wood.Buy it!
Ian McLagan & the Bump Band “Never Say Never” (00:02:59 LLC www.2minutes59.com 2009) —This song kills me. Written for his late wife and featuring backing vocals by Patty Griffin.Buy it!
Bruner “Don't Let Me Down” from Songs for a Friend (The Numero Group 2010) N —Recorded in the late 60s by Linda Bruner (of Pisces) when she was 17. Unearthed and released this year by The Numero Group label.Buy it!
Bob Dylan “Don't Think Twice, It's All Right” from The Witmark Demos: 1962-64 (Columbia 2010) N —Previously unreleased demo recorded for his publishing company.Buy it!
Sam Phillips “It Came Upon a Midnight Clear” from Cold Dark Night (self 2009) —6-song Christmas EP available at her web site. Sublime.Buy it!
Joni Mitchell “River” from Blue (Reprise 1971) —Oft-covered but nobody surpasses this original version.Buy it!
Nina Simone “Little Girl Blue” SINGLE (bethlehem records 1958) —From her debut 1957 album. Beautiful song written by Rodgers & Hart.Buy it!
The Geyer Street Sheiks “Great Dream from Heaven” from Great Dream CD ALBUM (Bjam Records 1993) L —The late Steve Mote wrote the lyrics and added them to a Joseph Spence instrumental. Beautiful.Buy it!
Rufus Wainwright “Spotlight on Christmas” from Blue Christmas (Mojo 2005) R —Written by Rufus Wainwright and recorded for this compilation CD that accompanied the January, 2005 issue of a UK music magazine called Mojo.Buy it!
The Waterboys “Fisherman's Blues” (Chrysalis 1988) —Written by Mike Scott & Steve Wickham and released in 1988.Buy it!
Steve Wynn and the Miracle 3 “The Other Side” from Northern Aggression (Yep Roc 2010) N —Me gusta mucho! Still one of the best rock bands in the world.Buy it!
The Greenhornes “Better Off Without It” from **** (Third Man 2010) N —From their recommended new release.Buy it!
Aimee Mann “Calling On Mary” from One More Drifter In the Snow (Superego 2006) —Written by Aimee Mann & Paul Bryan and recorded in 2006. I wish she would bring one of her Christmas shows to St. Louis.Buy it!
Cassie Morgan and the Lonely Pine “Fields of Snow” from A Very Bert Dax Christmas, Volume Eight (Bert Dax / Pancake Productions 2010) N L —There will be a series of Bert Dax Christmas shows this coming weekend at different clubs. Consult your local concert & club listings for more details.Buy it!
Neko Case “Christmas Card from a Hooker In Minneapolis” from New Coat of Paint - Songs of Tom Waits (Manifesto Records 2004) —From this compilation of various artists covering Tom Waits songs. One of my favorite Neko Case vocals.Buy it!
Randy Newman “Mama Told Me (Not to Come)” from 12 Songs (Reprise 1970) —Coming to the Sheldon Concert Hall on February 25. Great news, indeed.Buy it!
Like everything else, times are approximate.
Spinitron and this station are not liable for errors or omissions.