Dec 07, 2010
By Gene Stevens
So are you the kind of person who just LOVES everything about Christmas, can’t wait for it to arrive, start buying gifts months earlier, and have most everything wrapped up by now … OR would you be called a “grinch” – bah humbug to caroles and tinsel and all this “commercial-stuff” ? Or perhaps, you’re somewhere in between ? I think that’s where I am.
Since my kids have grown, I’m not as much “into” it; I don’t get a tree, I don’t put up lights and I’d never actually play a Christmas song for myself at home. However, I remember the “magic” and nostalgically re-live the best of Christmases-past, now and then; especially when I see young parents towing their little ones in shopping malls or on parade days. Yeah – good memories come back. And I really don’t mind hearing Christmas songs – heck I even catch myself humming or whistling along to the good ones.
I do buy a few presents because it really does feel good to give, but I don’t get all worked up in the seasonal mania that many folks do. I think Christmas is such a unique time, that everyone marks it in their own way, and it’s going to be vastly different from person-to-person. Growing up Catholic, I remember the midnight masses, and with my European heritage, the “big night” for gifts was always Christmas Eve.
But nowadays I’m much more interested in the historical and mythological studies of Christmas than in the actual commercialized holiday it has become. I’m fascinated how the young Christian Church chose the very same day so many other ancient religions and cults had also selected – December 25th – just days after the winter solstice, marking the end of the 6 month process of shorter days and increasing nights, and the start of the re-birth of longer days, which eventually leads to spring and the rebirth of nature (in the northern hemisphere).
Well, don’t get me started, otherwise I’ll keep writing a long long time – but if you’re as interested in this stuff as I am, I suggest you dig into it a bit – get some books, or surf the ‘net – you’ll find it fascinating.
So – what’s happening at the radio station ? We started playing Christmas songs the first Monday of December; a good one every half-hour – next week we’ll increase that to two Christmas songs every half-hour, and the week of December 20th, we’ll go “ALL Christmas”, 24/7.
I know that’s not what all listeners wanted – but it’s nicely down the middle between those who cannot wait to hear only Christmas songs as early as the Santa parade, and those who really love our usual music and don’t want to lose it just yet.
Ah – we’re just playing one of my favourite songs – “Mary’s Boy Child” by Boney M – I LOVE that song. So, I’ll wrap it up for now. Whoops – just before I do that …
Please tune into my Sunday show “Vintage Favourites” this Sunday (Dec.12th) for a 95th birthday salute to the legendary Frank Sinatra – who doesn’t like Frank ? He’s still one of our most-played artists, but I’ve never done a Sinatra show on Vintage Faves – and I really wanted to mark this special anniversary. Then, next Sunday (Dec.19th), it’ll be my annual Christmas show, featuring all the great Christmas pop songs of the Vintage Era in historic order – from the early 30s through the late 60s…
I will write again before the big day, but it’s OK for me to say this right now: “Merry Christmas” !