Mark Fossen – “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)”
I know, we all love the Darlene Love version of this so much that it is almost sacrilege to listen to any other. Well, we have rejected some on this very principle. Yet, what this Canadian songwriter is able to do on this is to use the massive present of his talent to serve a more subdued and introspective version of the classic. His interpretation acts as a counterpoint to the roaring Love version, and is as much fresh as it is welcome. Rarely is there a Holiday track that leads us to explore an artist’s full musical catalogue, but with the talent of Mark Fossen, we had to.
Dan Blakeslee and the Calabash Club – “Glowin‘ Blowin’ Christmas Tree”
We love how this one makes us gives us all the Holiday nostalgia feels. Like some of our favorites, it has the perfect amount of classic instrumentation, mixed with an innocent (which is very welcome in 2020) story of ornaments coming to life. This track is as fun as sleeping in on Christmas morning and being greeted by cinnamon buns. It would be easy for Blakeslee to do any one of the many Holiday standards and excel, but for him to craft his own – and do it so splendidly – shows just how great he really is.
Michael Barrow & The Tourists – “White Christmas”
This is an act we have excitedly covered a lot through the last years. So, regardless of our Grinch-like feeling towards the Holiday music genre, we were super excited to hear this one. The act are able to beautifully capture the simplicity of the classic Irving Berlin style, but also they make it their own. The acoustic guitar, the whistles, the stellar voice, all of these are presents we would never want to return for store credit. If ever an act thrilled you to listen to more, this is it.