Jason: Fuckin’ Andrea Bocelli, man.

Jeff: Andrea Bocelli? Why are you sitting here thinking about Andrea Bocelli?

Jason: Why do you think I’m sitting here thinking about Andrea Bocelli? Because he released a goddamn Christmas album, that’s why!

Jeff: Of course he did. I was blind, but now I see. HA HA HA

Jason: sigh The whole thing just rubs me the wrong way. I’m not denying that Andrea Bocelli is a tremendous — tremendous! — talent.

Jeff: When is Johnny Gill going to release a Christmas album?

Jason: Totally different way of rubbing, and that’s probably the only time those two artists have been mentioned in the same chat.

Jeff: Musically speaking, I don’t think I’d be able to tell my Bocelli from my Buble. I just know mothers-in-law are fond of them both.

Jason: Oh, don’t you worry. We’ll get to Buble.

Jeff: Will we? WILL WE, JASON?

Jason: Unless I shoot myself tonight, which is a very good possibility, yes.

Jeff: sad leprechaun dance

Anyway! Andrea Bocelli, who is blind.

Jason: And a great artist.

Jeff: Like Bob Ross?

Jason: Yes. Exactly like Bob Ross. That was the comparison I was about to make. It’s like you live inside my brain. What’s wrong with you today?

Jeff: It’s the seventh fucking day of Mellowmas! I can’t believe you’re asking. Jason, why doesn’t Andrea Bocelli wear shades?

Jason: I hope you have a great punchline coming.

Jeff: No, I really just wanted to know why Andrea Bocelli doesn’t wear shades. Like Stevie Wonder. Actually, now I’m wondering why Andrea Bocelli doesn’t play harmonica, but I guess you probably don’t know the answer to that either.

Jason: All I know is what Andrea Bocelli represented to David Foster the minute Foster laid eyes (HA!) on him: Big, fat fuckin’ dollar signs.

Jeff: Fortunately, Andrea Bocelli knows how to sing, as well as how to pose for an album cover that makes it look disconcertingly like he is a disembodied head, forearms, and crotch.

Jason: Holy crap, you’re right.

Jeff: Andrea Bocelli: My Turtleneck Christmas.

Jason: Why is he wringing his hands?

Jeff: He lost his harmonica?

Wait, did you say David Foster? I think I have something else to do right now.

Jason: Get back here. You know there’s no running away from Mellowmas. Anyway, we weren’t content to let Andrea Bocelli just sing…I don’t know, whatever it is he sings.

Jeff: “Dominick the Italian Christmas Donkey”?

Jason: Wow. I just realized he has further to fall.

Jeff: Ha! Okay, now I feel better about whatever we’re about to hear.

Jason: So we couldn’t just let him sing his Italian operettas or whatever. We had to monetize him — and by “monetize,” I mean “Americanize.” We couldn’t just let him sing, I dunno, “Ave Maria” twenty times in a row. We had to reduce him to the lowest common denominator.

Jeff: No matter how hard I try and pull you away from the gaping maw of whatever horror you’re hinting at, you won’t be deterred, so I’m giving up now. What in the hell did you find?

Jason: Well, the second lowest common denominator, now that you’ve put the awful idea of him singing “Dominick the Italian Christmas Donkey” into my head. Which, in my mind, is him singing “Santa Claus Is Coming to Town.” It’s just unnecessary.

Jeff: Ugh, I hate that song. When was the last time we covered someone’s version of it? I feel like we’ve avoided it for a long time.

Jason: I can’t remember. This all blends in for me.

Jeff: I think the last time was when Jerry Douglas channeled Tom Waits, which feels like it was last week.


Jeff: Is this better than that?

Jason: Well, it’d have to be, if you recall that vocal.

Jeff: Fingers crossed for lots of accordions and mandolins!

Jason: Bocelli can sing. Bocelli can SANG.

Jeff: True! So can Celine Dion. That doesn’t count for as much as I’d like.

Jason: Well, let’s see exactly how much it counts for when he’s stuck singing material he has no reason to sing.

Jeff: Are you ready for this Bo-jelli?

Andrea Bocelli, “Santa Claus Is Coming to Town” (download)

Jeff: Oh good, it’s a heavy Italian accent.

Jason: Why do we make him sing in English? He sounds like the Godfather.

Jeff: The Godfather would never do this.

Jason: So tasteful, string section.

Jeff: He sounds like Roberto Benigni busking.

Jason: Oooh, get ready for whimsy, Jeff!


Jason: We’re singing in the rain!


Jason: AND THERE THEY FUCKING ARE. He’s singing AFTER the kids.

Jeff: Well, that does it. I’m wadding up this track and throwing it in the Mellowmas fire.

Jason: Three minutes left! And the kids are whistling!

Jeff: Which is more obnoxious — that string arrangement, or the kids? I can’t decide.

Jason: Oh, definitely the kids. It’s like he walked into the orphanage from Annie.

Jeff: I really can’t decide, because the string arrangement is deadly patronizing. Did Foster arrange this after Bocelli was late on a payment or something?

Jason: Ready for a goddamn big finish?

Jeff: aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaake

Jason: He’s like the Daddy Warbucks of Mellowmas.

Jeff: Hey, harmonica! Awesome!

Jason: I knew that was coming, I just didn’t want to tell you. Although it might be a melodica, or an I DON’T CARE

Jeff: I hope Stevie Wonder is playing that. I’m picturing Andrea and Stevie accidentally bumping into each other in the booth.


Jeff: “Who’s coming? Who’s coming?”

Jason: He’s legitimately asking! “Who’s coming? I’m blind! I can’t see anybody!”

Jeff: Oh, that was gross.

Jason: This is what I’m talking about. Go sing “Adeste Fideles” or “Caro Gesu Bambino” or whatever, but don’t sing the shitty stuff.

Jeff: He can’t speak American, the kids are insulting, and that string arrangement is just foul.

Jason: Leave all that to the American Idol rejects.

Jeff: Mandisa!

Jason: Omarosa! Oh wait. Different awful show.

Jeff: You watch too much reality television. I’ve been telling you for years.

Jason: You know what I didn’t watch? The Andrea Bocelli & David Foster Christmas Special.

Jeff: First of all, I don’t want to believe this is real. Second of all, I think Kenny G was probably there.

Jason: Andrea Bocelli & David Foster: A Lucrative Winter’s Night.

Jeff: Andrea Bocelli & David Foster: So Many Slacks for Christmas.

Jason: This album was the top-selling holiday album of 2009.

Jeff: Fuck 2009.

Jason: And the fifth best-selling album of the entire year!

Jeff: I repeat, fuck 2009.

Jason: It was only released on November 3rd! So yes. Fuck 2009. Although it’s not like I can even say anything bad about Bocelli — he’s brilliant.

Jeff: Mothers-in-law be buyin’ records, yo! I’m sure by the time this is published, Rod Stewart’s goddamn Christmas album will be quintuple platinum.

Jason: I think I already pre-ordered that one for my mother.

Jeff: And again, I don’t know anything about Andrea Bocelli’s music, but I do know he isn’t above stooping to crap like this, which I guess is the way to mainstream success these days. As you pointed out, “brilliant.”

Jason: That’s why I’m so upset! I need to go lie down.

Jeff: The more we talk about Andrea Bocelli, the more I feel like you own some of his music.

Jason: I swear to you I don’t.

Jeff: Maybe “own” was too strong a word. Maybe I need to look at your Spotify playlists.

Jason: Look at whatever you want. I need to close my eyes, and dream sweet dreams of Andrea Bocelli walking around and accidentally taking a few kids out with his cane. Maybe poking smug David Foster in the face, too.

Jeff: Oh, I’d love to see that. Will Stevie Wonder be there?

Jason: The day Stevie Wonder collaborates with David Foster, I’m going to…wait, has that happened?

Jeff: My Mellowmas gift to you is to end this conversation before either of us can go and find out for sure.

Jason: OH GOD

Fuck this, I’m out.

Jeff: Me, I’m going to go listen to Bocelli’s duet with Julio Iglesias on “Besame Mucho.”


Jeff: Merry Mellowmas, my friend! MERRY MELLOWMAS.

About the Author

Jeff Giles and Jason Hare

Two people, separate rooms Trying to hurt the other Bound together by destiny Is there nothing they won’t do? Will we never see them through?

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