The Explanation
(for those who require one)

And, of course, that is what all of this is -- all of this: the one song, ever changing, ever reincarnated, that speaks somehow from and to and for that which is ineffable within us and without us, that is both prayer and deliverance, folly and wisdom, that inspires us to dance or smile or simply to go on, senselessly, incomprehensibly, beatifically, in the face of mortality and the truth that our lives are more ill-writ, ill-rhymed and fleeting than any song, except perhaps those songs -- that song, endlesly reincarnated -- born of that truth, be it the moon and June of that truth, or the wordless blue moan, or the rotgut or the elegant poetry of it. That nameless black-hulled ship of Ulysses, that long black train, that Terraplane, that mystery train, that Rocket '88', that Buick 6 -- same journey, same miracle, same end and endlessness."
-- Nick Tosches, Where Dead Voices Gather

The 12 Discs of Christmas 2008 #5


Simon & Garfunkel, The Star Carol
Theodore Bikel & the Pennywhistlers - Sweetest Dreams Be Thine
(A Very Merry Christmas, Volume 1; Columbia Special Products; 1967)

Today in the spirit of sharity, it's a double shot from A Very Merry Christmas, Volume 1, a promotional item that was only available via Grants Department Stores. While most of the artists contained within are usual suspects like Patti Page, Johnny Mathis and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, I thought I'd pass along its two most unusual tracks: a traditional carol sung by Simon & Garfunkel which until just recently was only available on this compilation, and a ballad by actor, folk singer and rooftop fiddler Theodore Bikel.

3 comments :

Matthew Birt said...

Do you have any information on the dates of these two recordings?

I'm really enjoying this. Thanks for putting this together.

blankemon said...

Man, I miss those promo Christmas albums. My folks had some great ones from gas stations and the like. I remember asking my mom, "Who's Vicki Carr?"

swac said...

I just read Star Carol was recorded in 1967, the Theodore Bikel track is off his 1967 album Songs of the Earth.