This blog ain't seen much action lately, so I'll try to revive with a question for any readers it has left.
So you all know about Pandora, right? The whole Music Genome Project? I find it moderately fascinating. I love putting in an artist and seeing who the "similar artists" are. I also adore the bizarrely opinionated artist descriptions: "Definitely the most talented and arguably the all-around best jazz vocal group of all time, the Boswell Sisters..."
Really? The Boswell Sisters!?
Obviously, since I get artists like the Boswell Sisters, I'm not using Pandora the way its creators may have expected. I listen to "The Andrews Sisters Radio." And in exploring the complicated constellation of artists-my-grandmother-sings-along-with-on-the-car-radio-in-her-blue-Buick-with-the-padded-steering-wheel (do a Google Image search for grandma car, and the first hit is exactly the car she drives), I've noticed something odd.
Christmas carols. Tons of Christmas carols. Buckets and buckets of them. Every fourth or fifth song, some days. Pandora's hipper cousin, Last.FM, does the same thing, but even more so!
Does this confluence of "oldies" and "Christmas" point to a nostalgia that automatically associates nuclear (white) family, holidays, the forties, the "Good War," and similar It's a Wonderful Lifeiana? Or is there something else? Were Christmas recordings simply more popular in the Bing Crosby era, before all those dangerous non-Christians and evil secularists attacked America?
I really want to know what this all means. I have a suspicion that the nostalgia surrounding Christmas has allowed songs in styles otherwise considered quite dated to remain in the public consciousness. I mean, who the hell listens to "Drinking Rum & Coca Cola" anymore? But everybody knows "Winter Wonderland!"
Okay, I still listen to "Drinking Rum & Coca Cola." I find its blatant colonialism problematic and fascinating.
Now, if you're still out there, discuss!