Later, Forgiveness
by Dan
Please note: MP3s are only kept online for a short time, and if this entry is from more than a couple of weeks ago, the music probably won't be available to download any more.



Parenthetical Girls - "Thank God it's Not Christmas"
Parenthetical Girls - "Flowers For Albion"
Sparks - "Thank God it's Not Christmas"

In 1992 there was a bill that came inches from beign passed in the Senate. Put forth by Rev. Conrad Merkis, known by his parish as 'Connie Christmas', the bill described a way for rock music, especially the growing popularity of grunge rock, to 'pay back' to the spiritual community the debt it owed for stealing the hearts and minds of its youth. The method was simple: every single song, especially hit songs, were required to have a 'Christmas Counterpart', which could be swung at spiritual holiday gatherings. The song simply needed to reference Christmas in some way - be it the words 'Christmas', 'Christmas time', or an 'infusion of a few bars from a famous Christmas carol.
'It's easy,' Rev. Connie used to say at rousing rallies, 'just add on to the end of your chorus a few bars from Joy to the World and I won't bother you anymore.' He would often finish these rallies by playing a medley of 'Christmas Counterparts' that he was suggesting to famous artists. He offered to write counterparts for the back catalogues of artists who were either retired or dead, and even went so far as to send demo tapes to Chris Cornell and other artists, with notes on them saying things like, 'for the Japanese release!' The bill was actually passed and still persists in a few municipalities, where local musicians enjoy a health living based on producing Christmas Counterparts for all the songs that become popular in the area.

Parenthetical Girls have released a Christmas 7" called Christmas Creep. It's got a New Order-ly cover of Sparks, it's a got a song built for this post (written independently, while listening to french news in a waiting room) and like all things ((GRLS)), it's got fascinating details, unignorable sexiness, and surprises at every turn. It's a double-A-side release, and it can be ordered here. With 150 in existence, get this already rare snowflake gem for someone you love, even if that's yourself. [Order]

also: [Buy Sparks' seminal incredible Kimono My House]

(image source)

Posted by Dan at December 22, 2009 10:45 AM

i habitually put 'thank god it's not christmas' on holiday mixes and always felt a little odd. i'm glad to see i'm not alone.

Posted by alicia at December 22, 2009 1:28 PM

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Sean Michaels is the founder of Said the Gramophone. He is a writer, critic and author of the theremin novel Us Conductors. Follow him on Twitter or reach him by email here. Click here to browse his posts.

Emma Healey writes poems and essays in Toronto. She joined Said the Gramophone in 2015. This is her website and email her here.

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Dan Beirne wrote regularly for Said the Gramophone from August 2004 to December 2014. He is an actor and writer living in Toronto. Any claim he makes about his life on here is probably untrue. Click here to browse his posts. Email him here.

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