Christ Was Born on Christmas Morn, by the Cotton Top Mountain Sanctified Singers (1929)
|Miller (left) and Jackson|
*Sullivan, Steve, Encyclopedia of Great Popular Song Recordings, Vol. 2 (2013), at 32-33.
Transylvanian Christmas, by Mojo Nixon and Skid Roper (1986)
|Mojo Nixon (left) and Skid Roper in 2012|
Our next tune is probably among the best 15 or 20 psychobilly holiday instrumental songs released during second half of the Reagan administration, so why wouldn’t it be included in one of my mixes? It was only a matter of time, really. Part of the song’s beauty lies in its simplicity – less is more, and all that, you know. It basically consists of Skid Roper playing two verses of “Joy to the World” on harmonica while Mojo Nixon beats on the bongos. Somehow Roper’s tweaked his instrument to make it sound kind of ominous. That’s sort of the overall MO of these guys, who released six albums during the 1980s before going their separate ways. They liked to shake things up a bit by fusing different styles together and parodying pretty much whatever came into view. Nixon went on to release a few more albums on his own and with others, and recently he’s launched several radio shows on Sirius.
For insight into Mojo Nixon’s First Amendment philosophy, catch his 1990 appearance on CNN's Crossfire with Pat Buchanan and Michael Kinsley, HERE.
Some of you may recall Wesley Willis, the outsider artist whose song “Merry Christmas” was included on my 1997 mix Let’s Trim the Christmas Tree. Well, are you ready for this? Wesley actually recorded a tribute song called “Mojo Nixon,” which is available HERE.