Ok, I admit it… I kind of choke up every time I hear Andy Williams break into “It’s The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year.” Forget the fact that his hot as can be ex-wife was convicted of killing her model good looks ski bum boyfriend, this track speaks to the family get togethers that seemed mythical in the universe my birth family inhabited.
Obviously, “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas,” sung by anybody- I prefer Judy Garland’s original, from the film musical “Meet Me In St. Louis,” is a tear jerker for all but those who spent some time in the Muqtada al-Sadr “kill whitey” training schools. And yet, year after year, I keep spinning the late great Donnie Hathaway’s “This Christmas.”
Maybe it’s because we know that this gifted young artist tossed himself out of a mid-town Manhattan hotel room, but whatever the reason, Donnie managed to conjure up the joy and magic of Christmas without denying the genuine pain that’s part of this coveted holiday for so many people who live on the fringe, the outskirts.
Whoever gets your vote, I wish you Peace, Joy and SOUL (wait, isn’t that how Don Cornelius signed off of every episode of Soul Train?) throughout the holidays, and beyond.