Christmas Glow Worm

December 10, 2015 12:54 PM

A Johnny Mercer joint, including one of my favourite rhymes ever: isthmus/Christmas. Merry Christmas.

The Mills Brothers had a hit in the 50's with Johnny Mercer's lyrics to an old German tune. In 1963, Mercer wrote some new Christmas lyrics for a Bing Crosby TV special. Except Crosby kind of neutered Mercer's lyrics and I could only find a line or two of the Mercer original on the internet. Mel Tormé butchered it in the 90's for a Christmas album and it seems everyone took his lyrics as legit forever after.
I rode my bike over to the Toronto Reference Library a few days ago and found the original Mercer Christmas lyrics which are bizarre but kind of great.
And now the part about not drinking and driving is restored.

posted by chococat (8 comments total) 8 users marked this as a favorite

I love this so, so much. So. Much. This made my whole day infinitely better.

That organ (or whatever the hell it is?) at around :42 and continues through the song is....perfect....and are those actual live drums? You just sound so confident that the joy oozes through my headphones.

I'm so floored. I'm going to stop talking and listen to it for the 4th time.
posted by remlapm at 2:20 PM on December 10, 2015 [1 favorite]

Hey thanks!
Yeah, that's a dirty old cigarette-burned organ that I found on the curb a few years ago.
Live drums, just with one mic in my dungeon of a basement.
posted by chococat at 5:33 PM on December 10, 2015 [2 favorites]

Live-played Casiotone beat! Just, yeah man.

Toe-tappin' and head-boppin'. Great to restore this gem to its original intentions, it's so happy-making, yet also head-scratching. Excellent feel, swanky smooth. It sounds like you were wearing a red velvet smoking jacket and fez while recording this. Love it!
posted by BlackPebble at 11:35 AM on December 15, 2015

Hey chococat, I don't think I've ever commented on your tracks but I've sure loved listening to them over the years. This one's an absolute stand-out. I love that you tracked down those lost lyrics; the part about flying like a taper through the skyscrapers in 1963 has a wonderful Cuban Missile Crisis/Dr Strangelove feel to it. This one's going straight onto my home Christmas playlist, to perplex the kids in the very best way.
posted by rory at 5:40 PM on December 15, 2015 [2 favorites]

Man, that's nice (and, that's some dedication!). Digging the warm, fuzzy mix, too.
posted by uncleozzy at 12:28 PM on December 18, 2015

posted by AppleSeed at 5:12 PM on December 19, 2015

Gosh it's hard to make xmas-related music that doesn't suck, but this sure is it.
posted by greenish at 9:23 AM on December 21, 2015

This is fabulous. I love the off-kilter groove you found for it.
posted by umbĂș at 7:39 PM on December 22, 2015

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