The Twenty-First Day of Mellowmas: Shakatakcked

Written by Mellowmas, Mellowmas 2012, Music

Break out the white wine spritzers, because we’re about to get some smooth jazz up in this Mellowmas


Jeff: Ahhhh, another Mellowmas morn.

Jason: I just looked out the window. It’s raining. So yes, another Mellowmas morn, indeed.

Jeff: That isn’t rain! Lady Saw is urinating off your roof. shudder

Jason: I wonder if she brought the fine people from Western Union.

Jeff: Yesterday was pretty rough, old friend. Pret-ty rough. I think we could both use something…smooth.

Jason: glares warily

Like, what kind of smooth? Keith Sweat smooth?

Jeff: Nope! This is going to make Keith Sweat sound like Sabbath.

Jason: By the way, that should totally be a type of deodorant. Keith Sweat Smooth.

Jeff: YES! I WOULD BUY THAT. But wouldn’t it just smell like Drakkar?

Jason: Wait, he’s going to sound like the Sabbath? Now I want to hear a record of Keith Sweat singing in Hebrew. Baruch atah Adonai, baby.

Jeff: I’d like to hear that too, believe me. But today, we’re listening to Shakatak.

Jason: Geshundeit!

Jeff: Thank you, but I didn’t sneeze. Shakatak!

Jason: Shalamar?

Jeff: They’re the baddest smooth jazz band who gets all the chicks! Or something.

Jason: It sounds like you’re quoting “Theme From Shaft.” Are you sure you don’t mean Shaftatak (insert mother joke here)?

Jeff: We are under Shakatak, Jason.

Jason: looks up

Jeff: It’s a smooth jazz holiday.

Jason: Can I take your word for it? Western Union is still ringing my doorbell. I really have to go.

Jeff: GET YOUR ASS BACK HERE. Shakatak didn’t record The Christmas Album for me to hear it all by myself. They wanted you to enjoy it too.


Jason: The Christmas Album? Haven’t we seen that title like three times this year?

Jeff: Yes, and it never signifies anything worth listening to. Are you sensing a trend?

Jason: We’re in the 21st day of Mellowmas. YES, I AM SENSING A TREND.

Jeff: But wait, Jason, it gets even better. They also recorded a song called “Happy Christmas to Ya!”

Jason: Please let this be a cover of Stevie Wonder’s “Happy Birthday” with just one word replaced.

Jeff: Fingers crossed. Ready to find out?

Shakatak, “Happy Christmas to Ya!” (download)

Jason: It IS a cover of “Happy Birthday”! This actually could be on a mid-’80s Stevie Wonder album, and you know it.

Jeff: There are so many things going on here, and they’re all 100 percent Mellowmas. I believe I hear a synth bass. I definitely hear a cheesy keyboard patch, a drum machine, and some annoying background singers.

Jason: Wait a second. Are there no lyrics?

Jeff: Don’t the words “Happy Christmas to Ya!” repeated over and over again count?

Oh good, we’re nowhere near finished.

Jason: Sorry, I said “lyrics” but I meant “verses.”

I have bad news.

I can’t explain it, but I kind of like this.

Jeff: That is seriously bad news. What’s wrong with you?

Jason: I don’t know!

Jeff: This is horrible.

Jason: I’m seriously concerned!


Jeff: Breakdown!

Jason: I know! I’m having a breakdown!

Jeff: What…what were the discussions that went on while the band was working out this arrangement?

“Should I take a solo here?”

“No, the background singers are going to go there.”

“How about in this spot?”

“No, background singers.”

“Maybe here?”

“No, that’s the breakdown with the background singers.”

Jason: cackle

Jeff: I mean…Even for a smooth jazz Christmas song, isn’t it kind of not there?

Jason: I might actually listen to that again. It’s all one note, but seriously? Stevie Wonder has totally released worse shit than this.

Jeff: I might have to cancel the rest of Mellowmas out of concern for your health.

Jason: Don’t make promises you can’t keep. This song could have been on Characters.

Jeff: You’re right, I was bullshitting you. I’m actually thinking that if you like this crap so much, we should just go ahead and listen to another song.

Jason: Double Shakatak?

Jeff: Hey, here’s one that will describe you if you keep listening to “Happy Christmas to Ya!”: “Lonely on Christmas Day.”

Jason: Two Shakataks for the price of one Shakataks?


Jason: I would love it if “Lonely on Christmas Day” was the exact same song as “Happy Christmas to Ya!” with different lyrics in the chorus. Or, even better: if it was “Happy Christmas to Ya!” in a minor key.

Jeff: Oooh, me too.

Shakatak, “Lonely on Christmas Day” (download)

Jeff: I have to admit, I miss this keyboard sound.

Jason: Ha!

Jeff: I’m sure it’s being used for evil here, but still.

So breathy, Jason. This song sounds like velour.

Jason: This person has listened to too much Whitney.

Jeff: Whitney Cummings.

Jason: (insert mother joke here)

It’s a time for memories, Jeff.

Jeff: Sentimental journeys. Goin’ back in time, even.

Oh good, we’re nowhere near finished.

Jason: I am seeing a producer that looks like Darrell from Coming to America. Like, he sits back in his chair and leaves a Soul Glo stain.

Jeff: Yes, and the star of the video is that one girl who played the blind sculptor in Lionel Richie’s “Hello.”

Jason: Absolutely!

Jeff: And every last goddamn person is wearing shoulder pads.

Jason: Jeff.

We understand Shakatak.

Jeff: shakes head defiantly

Jason: We’ve both been Shakataked today. Twice. Which, by the way, is better than being Shatakaked. Totally different thing.

Jeff: Where’s Lady Saw when you need her?

Jason: I just heard my toilet flush, so I’m guessing I can go get her if you want.