Let’s continue through New England to find specially state-dependent Christmas songs of a novel nature.
FIFTY STATES OF ‘MERICA-MAS
The Green Mountain State is no Ho Ho Holiday for seasonal spirituals, but rather a stingy Scrooge of unimaginative traditional carols sung in small private poorly lit areas.
Okay I did find a song called “Christmas in Vermont.” Just what i was looking for! But it’s one you’ve heard already. This is a bastardization of “Moonlight in Vermont” with some Christmas words subbed in. That’s just what you’d expect from Prairie Home Companion. Despite the predictability, Heather Masse lays it down smokey and jazzy, though. Like a welcome fireplace out of the cold….
So let’s find a weird one. On the Guiseppi Joe label, Dave Hall has dropped an odd album of old folk and slave carols (you read that right) including this one he wrote himself. Sweet–at times too sweet–it recalls the rural melancholy i keep in my heart from my own time in VT. Hard-wintered but hardly complaining, self-suficient though racked with poverty, fiercely loyal if not out-going, these are peoples who chainsaw a living off the land despite the leaf-peepers, fast-driving on-their-way-through Canadians, and looking-for-a-bit-of-relaxation-transplanted Lowlanders. Dave Hall is in fact one of those New Yorkers, but he’s so indie folk rock that you forgive him. He’s kinda low key, having only a couple children’s musicals published and performed. Still I’m a sucker for a love song, even a sad one (wait, is the wife in this song dead?).