It’s Day 9 here on the 14 Days of Rock’n’Roll Christmas 2015 on the Laptop Sessions music blog! Tonight, I bring you a song that you probably haven’t heard of before. But, that’s okay- as George Carlin said, “When are gonna write some more Christmas songs?”
Today’s song is “Bethlehem”, originally done by the band Chicago. They actually came out with three Christmas albums! I guess they really got into putting that “Chicago sound” onto the holiday classics. But, there were a couple of originals and “Bethlehem” is a really cool tune. It has an interesting beat and some difficult chord changes. The chords themselves are easy ones, but they change very quickly.
The overall sound was a difficult one to get down. My version doesn’t sound exactly like the original, but then again, you haven’t heard the original, so who’s to call me on it?
I hope you like this song- give it a chance! It’s free to download, so it’s not taking much of a chance. I’ll see you tomorrow for Day 10!
Hello and welcome to Day 12 of Jim Fusco’s 14 Days of Rock’n’Roll Christmas 2015! Only a couple songs left, but I’ve saved some good ones for last!
Tonight is my cover of Chuck Berry’s Christmas song, ‘Run Rudolph Run”. What a guitar player Berry is. The opening and solo to this song are both very difficult. They’re not necessarily difficult scales to play, but he plays them so smoothly and with those harmonies. I guess he was talking about himself when he said, “He could play the guitar just like ringin’ a bell.”
This song is also in a higher register (for singing) than it would appear. I’m used to singing this live and really letting loose, but in a studio setting, it was a bit harder to get the energy needed without messing up the recording levels. So, I opted to stand a bit further away from the microphone and sang with more passion, even though the notes might not be 100% right all the time. It didn’t sound right singing it too “sweetly’.
Okay, come back tomorrow for the penultimate release in my Christmas series. Don’t forget to download each song you can listen every year!
Really getting down to the wire now, as I bring you Day 11 of 14 here at Jim Fusco’s 14 Days of Rock’n’Roll Christmas! I hope you’ve been liking all of this free music so far. Let’s keep it rolling tonight with a great little tune that Elvis Presley sang all the way back in 1957. “Santa Bring My Baby Back (To Me)” is one of my favorites because of the good beat and that awesome bass line. That line took me a LONG time to master and my fingers were so sore I couldn’t play the bass again for a couple of days! But now I think I can play it in my sleep.
The backing vocals were a little trickier than I thought they’d be. There’s a couple of parts that I didn’t realize were in there, but you listen to a song a lot differently when you’re trying to recreate it. I was able to use some of my nice guitars and amps for these songs to give the proper sound and I think they really sound good.
So, add this song to your growing collection and come back for the final three days starting tomorrow!
Welcome to Day 10 of Jim Fusco’s 14 Days of Rock’n’Roll Christmas! I can finally breathe a sigh of relief, as I’ve officially finished the album. And only four days ahead of time! I had to re-record some parts and mix down the last couple of songs, but I’m finally done. Now, I can give my friends and family high quality versions on CD so they can import into their iTunes libraries.
Tonight’s song is another you probably haven’t heard of (don’t worry- this is the last one!), but it’s a really great song. It’s called “On Christmas Day” and is written by Brian Wilson. he recorded it and included it as a bonus track on his Christmas album from the mid-2000’s. I love the video of the band making this song- it’s so cool seeing it come together in the studio.
An interesting thing to me is that this song really was done back in the 70’s and was called “Bells of Paris”. Of course, the tune was slightly different, but it’s really the same song. I’d be interested to find out what came first- Brian’s Christmas lyrics or the ones about Paris. I know the Beach Boys had a failed Christmas album in the mid-70s and there’s actually a version called “Bells of Christmas” that replaces the lyrics with holiday-themed ones. But, the version Brian re-tooled that eventually became “On Christmas Day” is by far my favorite and that’s why I had to make my own version!
I hope you like the song as much as I do. Come back tomorrow (for a song you’ve heard of!) for Day 11 as we roll-on!