Elvis’ 75th Birthday

When I was four or five my Dad would come home from work, put  on his best of Elvis CD  and dance with me and my sister. It is because of my Dad’s bad dancing skills and Elvis that I leant what return to sender meant, that suede was kind of material used to make blue shoes and that you can wear rings around your neck. However, the most important thing I leant from Elvis, and my dad, was that song lyrics can tell stories and aren’t  just there to sound good, which makes Elvis to blame for my lyrics obsession.

If Elvis was still  alive he would have turned 75 today and while it may be incredibly uncool to say this, I still enjoy listening to his music from time to time.  To celebrate the King’s birthday I thought I would post some Elvis tracks. I was originally going to post his best songs, but you’ve all heard those. Instead I thought I would treat you to some of his forgotten gems. And they’re forgotten for a reason.

This one is just too funny not to share. I think the opening lines sum it up perfectly “Now, I’m a U.S. Male ’cause I was born/In a Mississippi town on a Sunday morn/Now Mississippi just happens to occupy a place/In the southeastern portion of this here United States” Cringe.

Elvis Presley- U.S Male.mp3

Girls in bikinis. Girls in tight sweaters. Girls in short dresses. Wow. He really did have a one-track mind. They should have just named this track “Anthem for a seventeen-year-old boy.” At least the music doesn’t suck.

Elvis Presley- Girls! Girls! Girls!.mp3

At least with the other two songs on the list, the music was decent enough to detract from the lyrics,  however with this next song, this is not the case. Dominic is a slow, plodding number that could send you to sleep. The lyrics aren’t any better either and with lines like: “Better start pickin’ some woo/Moo, moo, move your little foot do!” it makes U.S Male look like a masterpiece.

Elvis Presley- Dominic.mp3

I thought this next track was best accompanied by the video. It’s called Yoga Is As Yoga Does and is, as the title suggests, about yoga. It’s corny, cringeworthy and the choreography isn’t much better. The only positive thing about it is that it was before Elvis’ fat stage.


Christmas Songs That Don’t (Completely) Suck

It’s less than one week until christmas and if I hear Jingle Bells one more time I’ll end up punching the entire Salvation Army band.

So to get into the spirit of the world’s most stressful holiday, I thought I would share a list of Christmas songs that don’t (completely) suck.

Okkervil River- Listening To Otis Redding at Home During Christmas

Why it doesn’t suck: This is by far my favourite Christmas song of all time and not just because I am huge Okkervil River fan. While most Christmas songs are just about Santa and snow, this one incorporates the warmth and familiarity of coming back home. There no mention of reindeer or santa and it doesn’t even feature sleigh bells, which seem to be reoccurring theme with Christmas songs. And let’s face it, Will Sheff could write a song about what he ate for breakfast and still make it sound poetic.

The Lucksmiths- The Thought That Counts

Why it doesn’t suck: This is one of my other Christmas favourites focuses buying gifts, which  is a side of christmas that many Christmas tunes seem to neglect and for many of us can be a bit of a chore. The Lucksmiths were one of the most reliable bands around and like most of their song songs it’s  a little bit twee and contains some great lyrics, my personal favourite being even an unwanted gift is a gift. So true.

Julian Casablancas- A Christmas Treat

Why it doesn’t suck: Well, for a start, it’s Julian Casablancas who fronts one of the most influential bands of the decade. Aside from that, the music is suitably catchy and the chorus has the kind of intensity you would expect from a regular rock song. The lyrics however, leave a lot to be desired. No deep poetry or imagery here, just a bit of fun. And sleigh bells.

AC/DC- Mistress For Christmas

Why It Doesn’t Suck: It’s AC/DC. Let’s face it, even if you haven’t heard this track you know what to expect. It’s a little bit wrong, but it’s also more than a bit good. This is one to break out after a few drinks.

Bright Eyes-Blue Christmas.

Why it doesn’t suck:Seriously Conor, are you ever happy? In this cover of Elvis’s Christmas song Bright Eyes does his usual “woe is me thing” which usually works well when he’s the one writing the lyrics, which is probably why I’ve never liked any of his covers. He doesn’t really sound blue, he just sounds like he’s wallowing in self-pity. Still it has more indie-cred than Santa Claus Is Coming To Town, mind you, my Grandma has more indie-cred than that song.

David Bowie and Bing Crosby- Little Drummer Boy

Why it doesn’t suck: I wasn’t going to post this song, but when I asked my mum about her favourite Christmas songs she said it was her favourite Christmas song of all time because the combination of David Bowie and Bing Crosby shouldn’t work but it does. I’m not really sold on it but David Bowie makes it bearable.

Are there any songs I’ve forgotten? Do you think the ones I’ve posted do, in fact, completely suck? Let me know by posting a comment. There might even be a part 2.