“Here Comes Santa Claus” (Gene Autry Cover)

Originally posted 2009-12-21 12:00:07. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

For Gene Autry chords & lyrics, CLICK HERE!

By Chris Moore:

Hello and welcome to the final Monday edition of the Laptop Sessions before Christmas Day!  There’s been a lot of Christmas music being posted this month, and it’s hard to believe that this season is almost coming to a close.

Regardless, it’s an honor to kick off Christmas week here at the best cover song music video blog in the universe.

(And the most modest, too…)

“Here Comes Santa Claus” is a track from MoU’s expanded Christmas chord book.  It fits all the criteria for an enjoyable live song — easy to play, upbeat, instantly recognizable, and just plain fun.  There have been so many versions of this song recorded since Gene Autry’s original.  He himself re-recorded it not once, but twice.  In addition, Bing Crosby, Elvis Presley, and Bob Dylan have all recorded their own versions over the years.

In fact, in my favorite music/TV crossover this year, Dylan’s version was used as the opening song in the first few minutes of a Bones episode a couple weeks ago.  Of course, it faded out just as a bank robbery and a bombing were about to occur, but somehow I think Dylan must have enjoyed this macabre twist on the season for peace on earth and good will toward men.

That is, if he watches television.  I’m not entirely convinced he’s moved on from the radio…

It’s not only difficult to believe that Christmas will be this Friday, but that the new year is also just around the corner.  You should know that you have a special Guest Session to look forward to this Friday, with new sessions regular Jeremy Hammond bringing yet another all-new artist’s material to the blog.  It’ll be one of those “how have we not included a song from this guy” moments, I promise.  Being that it’s the end of the decade as well, there’s a lot to look forward to in the coming weeks.  To celebrate the decade’s best albums, The Weekend Review is in the middle of a Top Five Albums of the Decade, 2000-2009 countdown, with number 3 having been revealed yesterday in Ben Folds’ 2001 release Rockin’ the Suburbs.

On a side note, yesterday’s review brings me within one review of my twenty-six review commitment for the year, as suggested by Jim back in February of this year.  I hope he’ll be happy to hear that, in the spirit of continual progress, I’ll be committing to one review a week this year for a grand total of fifty-two!  Because I’ll be reviewing albums on a very regular basis, I’ll be able to really vary the type of reviews that I do.  For instance, I tend to review the albums I like most because I’ve always figured, why waste my time on the music I’m not crazy about?

Well, no more.

This will be a year of exercising my critical abilities as I review new 2010 releases, revisit the classic hits and infamous misses of the past, as well as continue my Deep Racks Report series (for which I already have five albums lined up — I’ve featured albums that begin with A, B, and C, so you maybe you can imagine where I’m going with this…). And I’ll be continuing the five star rating system I introduced a couple of weeks ago. While I’m still hesitant to comfortably box an album into a fraction like that, I really like the feel of the five star rating system.

In other end-of-the-year highlights, the Laptop Sessions will be featuring some great lists, including the Weekend Review’s take on the following:

“The Top Thirty Rock Albums of the Decade”

“The Top Ten Rock Albums of 2009”

“Yes, No, or Maybe So: One Sentence Reviews of 2009 Albums”

“The Top Ten Rock Songs of 2009”

“The Best Packaging of the Year”

“The Best Deluxe Edition Features of the Year”

As a final note, I would like to call on Jim and Jeff to share their thoughts for the best music of the decade.  We all have our overlapping areas of mutual appreciation, but we certainly have room for debate.  Considerable room, at times.

I know what my picks are for the best albums and songs of the decade, but I would love to be reminded or learn of Jim and Jeff’s picks.

With that, I’m done for tonight.  As I sign off, I wish a merry Christmas to all those out there eagerly awaiting a Christmas Eve service or the pitter-patter of eight tiny reindeer overhead.  As for me, I’m going back to the MoU 2006 Christmas Concert CD for a stroll down memory — and also Santa Claus — lane.

See you next session!

“The Man With All the Toys” (Beach Boys Christmas cover song)

Originally posted 2007-12-20 03:21:31. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

By MoU:

Back again for another edition of the Laptop Sessions, this time a first: with a band! Here with me are Chris Moore, Mike Fusco, and Cliff Huizenga- all members of the band Masters of the Universe (or MoU, as we call it). You can check out all of our original music on our website at http://jimfusco.com/albums.html!  There, you’ll find everything we’ve ever recorded.  And, it’s all free to listen to online before you buy.  I can personally guarantee that the original songs you hear on MoU’s website are top-notch.  There’s just something magical that happens when five creative people get together and make music.  It’s like when the Traveling Wilburys were formed.  They just all wanted to make music together and had a good time doing it.

Speaking of “good times”, you can clearly tell we’re having a ball singing “The Man With All The Toys”, originally played by the Beach Boys.  MoU did a great live version in concert last year, so we wanted to reprise that with this live acoustic version in my basement studio.  Cliff normally plays bass, but decided to provide only vocals for these sessions. But, you’ll hear his great bass playing abilities (plus Mike’s full drum set and guitar work) on MoU’s normal studio and live efforts.  One interesting thing is that the live version MoU did of “The Man with All the Toys” for our Christmas album was actually in the wrong key!  I didn’t realize it at the time, but we were actually singing the song a half-step higher than the Beach Boys did in 1964.  We rectified that problem for this music video.

I’ve said it a million times before, but the Beach Boys Christmas Album is one of my favorite albums (Christmas or otherwise) of all time.  It’s got such a great style and charm to it.  The members of the Beach Boys sound so young and happy- it’s just a great album if you want to put a smile on your face.  And, for the first side of the album, the Beach Boys themselves play all the instruments.  So, you get a really special sound.  The original songs, with the likes of “The Little Saint Nick” and “Santa’s Beard” have become hits, and “The Man With All The Toys” is no exception.  It’s such a short song- it wasn’t until about 40 years later when Brian Wilson re-recorded this song (I guess a self-cover song of sorts) for his solo Christmas album, “What I Really Want for Christmas”, that he extended the tune by adding a rocking instrumental break.  But, I’m happy with the sub-two minute original version, as well.  It’s a little slice of musical heaven.  Their voices were perfect on the vocal breaks and it’s really just a great holiday song.

I hope you enjoy tonight’s Beach Boys cover song and over the years, we’ll be bringing you many more Christmas songs here on the Laptop Sessions acoustic cover songs music video blog!