The Twenty-Third Day of Mellowmas: The Return of McD

Written by Mellowmas, Music

Who’s the only artist that’s enough of a badass to release a mostly repackaged Christmas collection and still make it work? McD mo B there, bitches!

There are just a few days left of Mellowmas, and our brave hosts have trudged their way through 27 soul cakes so far this season — as have you, dear readers. Frankly, we’re exhausted — and we know there’s only one man who can offer us a brief, shining light during this awful holiday.

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Jason: Ahhh, Michael McDonald. Love of my life.

Jeff: Patron saint of Popdose.

Jason: I don’t think we covered any McD last year, did we? I think we did four songs in a row a couple years ago.

Jeff: I don’t think so. I know we did a bunch one year, because you wouldn’t rest until we found a good one.

Jason: That’s right. And I did! That cover of “Deck the Halls/Jingle Bells” was fantastic!

Jeff: I remember him singing one song in some kind of weird alien bayou tongue.

Jason: “Christmas on the Bayou”!

Jeff: That would probably be the one!

Jason: I remember. You said “Lay zay long go mong boulay?” and I thought it was the best thing you said all year.

Jeff: I’m not sure whether or not to take that as a compliment.

Jason: I’m happy to see McD this year. It means there might actually be some good music this Mellowmas. Other than Lady Gaga, of course.

Jeff: Yeah, maybe, although I’m getting pretty annoyed with his endless series of Christmas albums.

Jason: I was just going to mention that. I think this is maybe his third or fourth?

Jeff: I mean, this one isn’t even new songs. It’s mostly old stuff.

Jason: I know. It’s kind of bullshit. There are some new tracks on this one, however.

Jeff: On the other hand, these Christmas albums seem to be the only time he ever really works with a live band anymore. Which makes no fucking sense at all to me, but whatever.

Jason: And barely. Did you see him on The Tonight Show?

Jeff: He was rockin’ the uke! That’s all kinds of wrong!

Jason: He sang “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” and GOT THE FIRST VERSE WRONG. How do you fuck up “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas”? Actually, I guess that’s a question more for David Archuleta.

Jeff: I guess that part of his brain was erased by the second verse of “Sweet Freedom”?

Jason: Love that song. But don’t let me get off-topic. Because I’ll praise McD all day. You know I will.

Jeff: Topic: McD, ripoff artist.

Jason: There’s a duet on this album.

Jeff: With his daughter, Scarlett Johansson.

Jason: …his daughter is Scarlett Johansson??

Jeff: Just fucking with you.

Jason: Goddammit!

Jeff: That would be pretty awesome, though. It would also explain her voice.

Jason: I mean, I’ve always dreamed of having McD as a father-in-law, but I figured that’d be the only benefit.

Jeff: I’m watching a video of him on Soundstage right now, and he’s playing the uke here, too. When did McD turn into Don Ho?

Jason: Right after those Motown commercials.

Jeff: I guess that’d do it.

Jason: Now I want to hear McD doing “Tiny Bubbles.”

Jeff: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! With Auto-Tune!

Jason: Yes! So this song is a duet with his daughter Scarlett McDonald, right?

Jeff: Yeah, what’s it called?

Jason: “Yah Mo Be There.”

Jeff: Ah, right. A holiday classic. Now I want to hear McD pulling a Tommy Tutone.

Jason: God forbid.

Jeff: “I Keep Forgettin’ (What You Wanted This Year)”

Jason: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! “Present By Present.”

Jeff: What a fool belieeeeeeeeeeeeeves…he sees…come slidin’ down the chimney!

Jason: I love it! “What a Fool Believes” with sleigh bells!

Jeff: “Santa Is Just All Right”! “Takin’ It to the North Pole”!

Jason: Ha ha ha ha!

Jeff: Would the Doobie Brothers finally snap and murder him?

Jason: And throw away all that perfectly good Michael McDonald royalty money? I don’t think so.

Jeff: Plus, he makes a great Santa at the Doobies holiday party.

Jason: Giving Jeff “Skunk” Baxter a lump of coal, year after year. But anyway, today’s song. See, I told you not to let me go off-topic! You know I can just riff on McD all day!

Jeff: Right, right, the song.

Jason: “I’ll Be Home For Christmas.” A duet with Scarlett McDonald. Which is kind of a funny name.

Jeff: Heh. Most names ending in McDonald are probably pretty funny, I think.

Jason: She’s the daughter of Michael McDonald and Amy Holland, so I imagine she sounds great.

Jeff: And probably has a great beard, too!

Jason: Ha ha ha ha ha ha!

Michael McDonald with Scarlett McDonald — I’ll Be Home For Christmas (download)

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Jason: What the hell? This is, like, burlesque stripper music!

Jeff: Huh? Is this Leon Redbone?

Jason: I don’t know, but I kind of like it!

Jeff: Uh…

Jason: You don’t like it? It’s all dixieland and shit!

Jeff: No, no, I do like it. I’m just kind of stunned. And angry.

Jason: How come?

Jeff: Why isn’t he this cool on his real albums?

Jason: Ha ha ha ha ha ha! Great question!

Jeff: His real albums are all synths and programs and shitty adult contemporary
ballads with lyrics that don’t rhyme.

Jason: I guess Christmas is his time to get back to his roots or something. Oooo, horn solo! This is pretty good.

Jeff: He really is like Santa. He only comes once a year.

Jason: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! So where’s his daughter? I’m dying to hear her voice. I hope she sounds like him.

Jeff: I love this song, and I want to punch McD in the face.

Jason: Hey, there she is! Holy shit, she’s awesome!

Jeff: Well, hello there, Scarlett! This is her, I think. Well, her as of two years ago, anyway. Spoiler: She doesn’t have a beard.

Jason: Dammit! Okay, maybe she’s not awesome, but she’s certainly not bad.

Jeff: I think this is her, too. I have no idea how old she is, so I’m just going to go ahead and purge my browsing history now.

Jason: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! Man, that was pretty good.

Jeff: I’d listen to it again.

Jason: Once again, McD comes through for the holidays but ruins Mellowmas.

Jeff: You know, between this, Lady Gaga, and Lemmy, we’re putting together quite the Mellowmas mixtape.

Jason: We sure are! I feel differently about this one, though. I was disappointed to find I liked Lady Gaga. Liking this track is exactly what I wanted. And exactly what I needed today.

Jeff: Fuck it, I’m playing it again right now.

Jason: Yeah, me too!

Michael McDonald with Scarlett McDonald — I’ll Be Home For Christmas (download)

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Jeff: Not enough songs have tuba. You have to go to Disneyland if you want to hear tuba.

Jason: Or Dollywood. Where I believe a tuba player follows Dolly around every time she walks down the street.

Jeff: But tubas playing “9 to 5” just aren’t the same.

Jason: Here’s the only negative thing I can say about this track: did you notice that it’s not really a “duet”? I mean, he sings his part, and then she sings hers. They don’t sing together.

Jeff: Yeah, what’s up with that?

Jason: I don’t know. It seems wrong somehow. Show your daughter some respect, McD! Don’t dis her just because she can’t grow the beard yet!

Jeff: Ha ha ha! Imagine how much you’d hate singing if McD was your dad.

Jason: Damn, I really like this. I kind of want to get up and dance.

Jeff: Will Jess dance to this with you? Find out.

Jason: She’s staring at me blankly.

Jeff: I think I’ll be able to feel her punching you from here.

Jason: Ha ha ha ha ha! Thanks, McD, for rescuing us…most likely for the final time this holiday.

As a final treat for your 23rd day of Mellowmas, check out McD rocking the hell out of “White Christmas/Winter Wonderland.” Thanks to Sue for bringing it to our attention!

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