Inspired by Dr. J’s 12 Days of Christmas Music, Confucius says: here’s twelve albums of Christmas music from the past dozen or so years that are worth your while (and money). Of course, this will only bring us to the twenty-fourth, so you’re on your own for the actual Twelve Days of Christmas unless we get any more bright ideas. That said, we figure you’ll probably want to be left alone to deal with all the treed fowl, leaping lords, etc., that tend to fill up that period.
Squirrel Nut Zippers — Christmas Caravan
The weirdo (in the best way) jazz-blues-klezmer-swing band out of Chapel Hill put out a typically idiosyncratic Christmas album, almost entirely of original music.
The cover of “Winter Weather” has a typically wry, suggestive tone, and the original “Carolina Christmas” is utterly irresistable. Also, they rip through an instrumental “Sleigh Ride” most entertainingly.
Do check out the wiggy last track—written by the drummer’s grandfather and rearranged and recorded by the Zippers fifty years later, it’s followed by the scratchy original 1952 demo.
Don’t ask impertinent questions like that jackass Adept Lu.