The Ninth Day of Mellowmas: Growlymas

Written by Mellowmas, Music

Chances are, we’ll never hear Tom Waits doing an album of bluegrass carols — but if that day never comes, here’s the next best thing.

Every once in a while, a beautiful (mostly) instrumental Christmas album is released. And then, every once in a while, a curveball is inserted smack into the middle of the tracklist. Observe!

Jerry Douglas — Santa Claus is Coming to Town (download)


From Jerry Christmas (Get it?)  null

Jeff: Oh God.

Jason: …Cookie Monster?

Jeff: Ha ha ha!

Jason: Who is this and why does he want to steal my soul?

Jeff: This is not cool. I was expecting a couple minutes of pleasant bluegrass.

Jason: Is this what you do when you can’t afford Tom Waits?

Jeff: How can you not afford Tom Waits? I’m pretty sure all you have to do is leave a trail of old tennis balls and chewed up cigars.

Jason: I don’t know what to think of this. It’s alternately pretty and creepy. So I guess it’s pretty creepy. Oh, THERE’S Jerry Douglas on the track, I suppose.

Jeff: Okay, so that transition from the vocal to the solo was pretty terrific.

Jason: Yeah, the solo was pretty good.

Jeff: It’s like two different songs.

Jason: Was that Jerry Douglas?

Jeff: I hope so. It’s his name on the song.

Jason: I think I’ve only heard him play whatever that instrument is that he plays.

Jeff: He plays a resophonic — maybe that’s what you’re thinking of.

Jason: Well, that’s over. 2:11 is apparently enough time to give me nightmares for the rest of the holiday season.

Jeff: I’d love to know what the hell Jerry Douglas was thinking when he decided to record this.

Jason: I’ve seen him play with Union Station.

Jeff: Did he look like the Devil?

Jason: No, he looks like a carpenter, like all the other bluegrass musicians.

Jeff: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! This song is just…so…weird.

Jason: Well, the rest of the album is quite pretty.

Jeff: I could understand it if the whole thing wanted to be funny, or creepy. But it sounds like he sat down to record a straight version of “Santa Claus Is Coming to Town” and fell on his throat.

Jason: “Jerry plays a variety of resonator and slide guitars, and Maura O’Connell guests on vocals.”

Jeff: Oh, so THAT’S who that is.

Jason: I will bet you $100 that is not Maura O’Connell.

Jeff: “Maura O’Connell has had a tracheostomy.”

Jason: Ha ha ha ha ha! I guess it could be a girl. Your mother sounds like this when she first gets up in the morning, after her first cigarette.

Jeff: Hold on, I’m laughing.

Jason: You know she does.

Jeff: deep sigh

Jason: She’s all like “ARRRRRGH! GIVE ME MY MEDICATIONS!” ‘Cause your mom takes medications.

Jeff: Did you let the bottle of Kahlua on the nightstand run out? She gets dry throat without her Kahlua. Also, my mom plays a mean dobro.

Jason: She threw the Kahlua bottle at the door last night. Shattered into a thousand pieces. Just because I wouldn’t let her get a second Big Mac. And when you say your mom plays a mean dobro, is “dobro” code for something else?

Jeff: No, but “carpenter” is. Wakka wakka wakka!

Jason: I don’t get it.

Jeff: Works…with wood…Goddamn, you’re stupid.

Jason: Oh! I get it now! cough

Jeff: This is what I get for making sex jokes with a virgin.

Jason: Any day now, I’m going to get to second base. I know it. Until then, I’d like to recommend this album to our readers. It’s actually quite beautiful.

Jeff: And it has a clever title! JERRY Christmas! Do you get THAT, you thick fuck?

Jason: I did, but I was hoping against hope it was a Jerry Lewis album.

Jeff: Ooooooh!

Jason: To go with my Jim Nabors album.

Jeff: “Hey, lady! Merry Christmas, lady!”

Jason: You know Jerry Douglas is touring behind this album, right?

Jeff: Is he opening for Kenny Rogers on his umpteenth holiday tour? I bet you’d go see that.

Jason: I would not, unless Lionel was going to be there. Do you know who’s joining him on the tour? Other than your mom, listed in the program as “batting cleanup”?

Jeff: Tom Waits?

Jason: Oates!

Jeff: Get out!

Jason: I’m serious!

Jeff: Way to go, little guy! I bet Jerry Douglas will let Oates sing more than one song.

Jason: And do you know why Oates is touring with Jerry Douglas?

Jeff: Because he finally got fed up with Daryl Hall?

Jason: Could be. I actually don’t know why. It was a genuine question. I thought Oates was sitting around waiting for Icehouse to reunite.

Jeff: I’ve always thought Oates thought of music as his hobby, actually. I think he thinks his real job is counting his money and mountain biking. Or perhaps conditioning his luxurious hair.

Jason: That’s a great job. Biking and counting your money? I do at least one of those.

Jeff: So I’m glad he’s out there performing, no matter who it’s with. I’d like to see Oates with everyone, really.

Jason: I’m sure it’ll be a nice tour. Jerry Douglas is the man.

Jeff: John Oates with the surviving Doors! John Oates with Van Halen!

Jason: We should totally arrange a Mellowmas tour! All the artists can get together and make our ears bleed!

Jeff: John Oates with Black Sabbath!

Jason: Wing & Oates! Every artist would have to add “& Oates” to their name.

Jeff: That “& Oates” thing is a killer idea for Oates’ next solo album. John Oates, standing on Christopher Cross’ shoulders so he can put a star on top of the tree!

Jason: Ha ha ha ha! Cross gnawing at his sneaker, wondering if it’s edible!


Jason: Ha ha ha ha! For our new readers, we have a thing about linking Christopher Cross to Taco Bell products.

Jeff: I wish we had enough clout to arrange for an album of Oates singing backup with other singers.

Jason: Dude, we don’t even have enough clout to arrange to talk to Oates. We interviewed his mustache.

Jeff: We could call it Listen Carefully, Daryl. And then we’d release an entire album of Daryl vamping at the end of “Wait for Me.”

Jason: Ha ha ha ha! What were we talking about in the first place? Jerry Douglas? Tom Waits?

Jeff: Who?

Jason: Cookie Monster?

Jeff: Whatever. I’m sure it wasn’t important anyway. Want a sugar cookie and some eggnog?

Jason: Yeah, hang on. Let me just get your mother out the door.