Life’s Simple Pleasures

My cherished recollections of holiday specific, family fun, undoubtedly, have been indelibly time stamped, 9 December 1965, by the radio and television transmissions, airing on that very day. Stepping into the ol’ time machine…

It had been shortly after our Thursday supper, when my Pop and I had driven off to our small town Michigan’s Mom and Pop grocery store. While he took care of the provisioning, I had wandered off to the 45rpm record display; with one and only one goal in mind.

I just had to snag myself a copy of the rock and roll instrumental, No Matter What Shape (Your Stomach’s In) recorded by the T-Bones. This track had first been used within an Alka Seltzer television ad campaign and, next, minus all of the product hoopla, eventually got transmitted over radio stations, nationwide; in my neck of the woods, this (now) classic blasted out over CKLW Windsor / Detroit’s 50,000 watt energized airwaves.

After dad paid for the groceries and I forked over 98¢ for my new record, we headed for home. Once my Zenith monaural record player had spun my new disc (at least a half a dozen times)…

It was time for my family and I to gather in our living room to set up / decorate our Christmas tree. No sooner had our home taken on a far more festive ambience than my favorite comic strip, Peanuts, the brainchild of cartoonist Charles M. Schulz, came to life via the CBS network’s debut of A Charlie Brown Christmas; all further enhanced and jazzed up by the Vince Guarldi Trio’s, by and large, instrumental soundtrack.

Returning to the here and now, all of my fond recollections are sure to continue playing out, throughout 9 December 2020, especially after tonight’s supper when, just for the symmetry of it all, I plan to rev up my CD player to track thru that vintage T-Bones track, set up my Christmas tree and, to top off the entire evening, pop into the VCR an ancient VHS tape to re-experience Schulz’s animated Christmas masterpiece.

Considering the past year’s events, which we all wish we could forget, memories of life’s simple pleasures do mean so much.

So much more!

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Stay Publicly Masked!
Stay Safe at Home!
Stay Healthy!

-30-

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The 3 Minute Instrumental ~ Vid of the Day

Back in the day when Top 40 a.m. radio stations… such as Windsor, Ontario’s CKLW… ruled supreme over popular music of the 1960s, it was child’s play for the listener to zone out on the the 3 minute instrumental… such as Vince Guaraldi’s Cast Your Fate to the Wind… to envision imagery in the theater of the mind… such as what we see in our Vid of the Day.

I’d be remiss not to Cast my Kudos to the Wind to YouTube videographer JamesTJordan1 for so adeptly capturing the wind… and with a montage of still photos, no less! Kinda makes you want to revisit your younger days… to gleefully rush outside to fly a kite, doesn’t it?

 

 

 

 

 

 

BlogCast: Tom’s Top 20 Countdown “2” Christmas: Song 7

With Christmas now only six days off, in the role of “Dr. Tom”, I’m prescribing today’s musical selection to anyone who may be feeling a bit… or maybe totally… stressed out by the ongoing holiday rush. The good news… this is no bitter pill to swallow… it involves the pleasant, tasty, active ingredient found in The Christmas Song as performed by Nat King Cole.

For optimal results I highly recommend that you “wash it all down” with the following relaxation scenario… either played out in your real world or in the theater of your mind.

Either accompany this song with as many of the following sensory stimuli as possible… or come up with your own custom-made relaxation routine.

You’re in the company of loved ones or maybe this only involves that one special someone… the love of your life. There’s a crackling fire in the fireplace… you’re sipping your favorite beverage while fondly reminiscing about Christmases past. As the daylight slowly dissolves into the dusk, the only artificial lighting is found on your Christmas tree… this twinkling effect mesmerizing… as is the scene past the windowpanes… the wind whipped snow flurries transforming everything out of doors into a pristine, winter wonderland.

If by song’s end, you still find that you need to unwind more, I have an additional Rx for you… The Christmas Song performed by the Vince Guaraldi Trio.

Mild Disclaimer: This music can be habit forming… BUT… in a totally good way. Even better, there are no known adverse side effects… even after repeated “usage”. Now, that’s a claim that none of those drug ads we read about in magazines, hear about on the radio and see on TV, could never make. Check out a couple of drug ad parodies… HERE and HERE.

I now thank you for your listenership and cordially invite you back for the remainder of my Top 20 Countdown “2” Christmas… where I’ll be presenting select holiday classics… one-a-day… from now until we reach #1 on the 25th.

You’re also cordially invited to click back here for my regular monthly BlogCast… one that typically features anywhere from 3 to 5 songs that, when segued, transform everything into an appealing theme… this program slated to hit the www “airwaves” on Sunday, December 24, 2017.

 

I wish you a Merry, Stress-Free Christmas and Holiday Season!

 

FYI, my past musical presentations are archived within my BlogCast and music categories.

If you’ve enjoyed this post, don’t forget to like, follow, share and comment.

 

 

BlogCast: Tom’s Top 20 Countdown “2” Christmas: Song 8

The Little Drummer Boy, a.k.a. Carol of the Drum was composed by Katherine Kennicott Davis back in 1941. In the three score and sixteen years since then, there’ve been literal scores of musical scores… so many superb performances that, deciding on one over another… i.e., which one to give top billing for today’s BlogCast… was nearly impossible… uh… nearly being the operative word here.

While it had been tempting to go with the very first rendition I had ever heard (as a four-year-old boy)… performed by the Harry Simeone Chorale… that was not reason enough.

Well, as it turns out, my overall deciding factor was not so much the quality of the performance… after all, they are all winners. In the end, it all boiled down to the power of the unifying message. Hence my choice of the Alex Boye’ ft Genesis Choir (video above).

As for the other nine recording artists who I also “auditioned”, I’ve typed up a list of links to videos which showcase their great performances. And, btw, I do thank all the YouTube posters and videographers who’ve been applying an extra special, festive shine to all of my holiday BlogCasts. Obviously, none of what I do would be possible without you.

 

The “Little” Little Drummer Boy Menu

1951: Trapp Family Singers (the very first recording)
1958: Harry Simeone Chorale (this is the record I first heard as a 4-year-old “little drummer” boy)
1965: Vince Guaraldi Trio (Charlie Brown Christmas album)
1977: Bing Crosby & David Bowie (Bing’s final TV holiday special)
1987: Bob Seger & the Silver Bullet Band (Special Olympics Christmas Charity album)
1988: Mannheim Steamroller (A Fresh Aire Christmas album)
1993: Glen Campbell (Home For The Holiday’s album)
2004: Vanessa Williams (Silver & Gold album)
2006: Celtic Woman with Orla Fallon & Chloe Agnew (Christmas TV special)

 

I now thank you for your listenership and invite you back for the remainder of my Top 20 Countdown “2” Christmas… where I’ll be presenting select holiday classics… one-a-day… from now until we reach #1 on the 25th.

You’re also cordially invited to click back here for my regular monthly BlogCast… one that typically features anywhere from 3 to 5 songs that, when segued, transform everything into an appealing theme… this program slated to hit the www “airwaves” on Sunday, December 24, 2017.

 

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to you all!

 

FYI, my past musical presentations are archived within my BlogCast and music categories.

If you’ve enjoyed this post, don’t forget to like, follow, share and comment.