Tuesday, April 26, 2011

CHRISTMAS IN JULY! "Merry Christmas" & The Joy"

CHRISTMAS IN JULY! "Merry Christmas" & The Joy"

July 19, 2010 at 11:19 am
http://www.reverbnation.com/play_now/4609109 for “Merry Christmas”
www.reverbnation.com/play_now/4609214  for “The Joy”

In 1984, we produced a Christmas cassette in that famous basement at 505 Pleasant. We spent hours laying down tracks especially Dave Bourque, Greg Loell and Mike McBride. We put most of our energy into doing “Love’s Beginning”, “Glory” and “God is With Us”. We added two previously recorded tracks that fit the theme “The Word”, and the “Magnificat”. And then we added two multi-track songs written by Mike, “The Joy” and “Merry Christmas”. Frankly, we kind of ran out of gas and time at the end. We rushed the tape out and that ‘rush’ showed in some ways. The comparative volumes of the songs varied widely and these last two tracks were a little uneven. You may notice the different parts in “The Joy” are mixed awkwardly. Mike accidentally erased “Merry Christmas” at one point (reminds me how Brian Eno almost erased U2’s “Where the Streets Have No Name”!) but he was able to salvage a version of the song.

All that notwithstanding, there are really nice things in these last tracks. Greg plugged into the central effects and added some great “wash” to the background of “Merry Christmas”. (In concert, I had the duty of approximating this on Greg’s electric with swells and harmonics!) Plus, Greg does a great turn on bass in it. There was a lot of switching off and unique additions by everyone on these. I did the “Jingle Bells” line in “The Joy” as an example. Greg’s little acoustic solo in that is sweet. There’s too much to mention, but I can’t leave without mentioning Sully’s (Kathy Sullivan Bourque) cute spoken section in the middle of “Merry Christmas”; that was awesome!

These two songs together eloquently shine with the joy of the “Reason for the Season” or “putting Christ back in Christmas” without getting at all overbearing, judgmental or preachy and they are attractive and inspiring.

I guess I could go on but as Chuck so aptly said at the Zoller House, “enough is enough”!
Did the Walton’s over feed their cow? Fat Chance.



Mark L.