Thursday, November 26, 2020

Christmas 2020!!!


Good afternoon, and welcome to Christmas 2020! I know it's been a really rough year, but I hope that a month worth of Christmas spirit here at the end of the year will make it all better. I'm here to do my best at lifting your spirits via the music of the season, but I'm doing things a little different this year.  First, I haven't ripped a single record to share with you.  All of the rips are coming courtesy of The Internet Archive and their Great 78 Project. They've collected more than a quarter of a million old 78 RPM records and digitized them, then offered them up for free on the internet for digital listening. I've narrowed that vast collection down to some of the very best (and most obscure, naturally) Christmas music you can find anywhere, and I hope to share it with you here this month in daily drops. I've taken their original shares and tried to lightly clean them up by removing clicks and surface noise, fading in quickly at the beginning and slowly at the end to preserve as much of the sound as I could and present it to you in a nice listenable fashion. The quality they've created is just amazing, and I hope that the little work I've done here makes them that much more listenable. Some things here sound amazing, and some things are clearly a product of old technology ravaged by age. Enjoy it when you can and skip it when you can't. These records sound like Christmas morning at my Grandma's house, a big stack of dusty 78s on the console player, each one dropping, playing, then waiting it's turn for the next. There's lots of music here that even I've never heard, both songs lost to time, and artists that you've never heard doing familiar carols. There are things here that I've shared from both albums and singles before, but they're still most likely unfamiliar to all but the most voracious Christmas collectors. And after I've shared them all out, you'll become a big fan of some of this stuff that's just about disappeared from the airwaves these days. Pull up a comfy chair and sit a while, listen to the melodies and the words, they come from a time that seems simpler now, but had it's own challenges. They got through them with the help of this music, and hopefully it will help us get through our challenges today.  It helps that the prime era of great Christmas music happens to coincide with the heyday of the 78 RPM single. There is some really great stuff here, and artists & labels were churning this stuff out trying to find the next Bing Crosby and the next White Christmas. I just can't say it enough, there is some amazing stuff here, I'm so happy to be able to bring it out of the cabinets at The Internet Archive and share it with you. Once the season is over, I'm making a large donation of my old 78s to their cause, and if you have stuff that you can share with them, I urge you to donate as well. OK, I need to get off my soapbox and share some music with you. Stay tuned! And Merry Christmas!!!


PS-If you can't wait any longer, I will remind you that there are now three or four years worth of active Christmas downloads in the archive, including lots of reshares from even older years. You could spend from now until Christmas doing nothing but downloading old shares if you want to. Sometimes the active links are in the comments, so don't forget to check there. Don't say I never give you anything!

5 comments:

Buster said...

Awright! This is just dandy, but the link is eluding me.

Ernie said...

No link, the shares come later. :) Happy Thanksgiving!!

Buster said...

Ah, I get it. Looking forward . . .

humanebean said...

Merry Xmas, Ernie! Hope you and yours are safe and well, and that this holiday brings a bit of peace and joy to a very challenging year. Looking forward to this year's potpourri. All the best!

friendsound said...

Huzzah! As always, massive thanks for your spirit-lifting discoveries. Very best for the season.