Christmas Eve

My annual Christmas Eve Broadcast takes place this year on RadioBDC, the Boston Globe internet station. From WBCN to WFNX and now to RadioBDC, the tradition continues from 6pm-Midnight.

Find it here: RadioBDC

This is the future.

I love this time of year and love the music that defines it. I was asked by a friend who is also addicted to Christmas music to write the liner notes for the CD that he sends out annually to a selective few. I share it with you now as it explains our addiction. We are hopeless and delirious and joyous:

We are a cult.

Although we are not specifically religious we are fanatics, with an avid devotion to our cause, peculiar rituals, odd practices, and our own idiosyncrasies. If you are reading this you are either a member of the cult or someone with whom we want to share our overwhelming passion. And we have no idea how many members from around the world are part of our cult as we operate only in small cadres, circulating our beliefs to a special few. In this specific case only 100.

We are the cult of the sound of Christmas, the purveyors of Christmas music.

Our goal is to impart the joy of great Christmas music and all of the love that it entails.
Throughout the year we scour used record stores, the internet and yard sales in search of this singular music and for songs worthy of being promulgated. With the blight of dreadful Christmas music (made more so in recent years by the web and home recording) we pride ourselves on presenting those songs that if heard one more time you would not kill the DJ but rather turn up the volume.

It is exceedingly difficult to write a good Christmas song, more so to write a classic. And only a few artists, like Saint Etienne and Sufjan Stevens, have written more than one. The song must convey the spirit of the season without being maudlin or overly sentimental. There are hundreds of new Christmas songs every year and we diligently listen to each and every one hoping to find the few diamonds amidst the detritus. And if an artist covers one of the classics, we are always looking for a unique interpretation.

Michael and I have never met in person, but as members of the cult we are brothers in arms. I have had the privilege of spreading the word for over 30 years via the radio and internet airwaves. He graciously credits me as an inspiration, but if this is so he has outdone his mentor. For 6 hours every Christmas Eve I have the benefit of playing the many precious Christmas songs from my collection, heard only once a year, coupled with the handful of new gems that I have discovered during the year. Michael, on the other hand, gives us 2, if not 3 CDs filled with unheard treasures. How he unearths so many hidden jewels is a yearly tour de force.

Why, you may ask, are we so obsessive? We have all been smitten in a moment in time by a sound, rhapsody or melody that is the joy of Christmas. Peace, love and understanding transmitted through song. Christmas is an ever evolving holiday with origins in the winter solstice. It is a time to bask in the warmth of loved ones, partaking in the bounty of our harvest as we settle in for long dark nights ahead. With this holiday we also bond with our neighbors through song for only together can we hope to survive as well as enrich our lives for another year. We of the cult know secretly in our hearts that there are many of us out there and our sincere desire is to unite this spirit not for a season but for four.

So whether you are dancing around the Christmas tree, wrapping presents beside the tree or making love under the tree, we are honoured to provide the soundtrack to your celebration. We feel your love and send you ours.

Merry Christmas,


Lopsided World of L

Before we hit Christmas we have Jonathan L’s weekly podcast from Europe a wee bit early this week.

Lopsided World of L (Hour 1)

Lopsided World of L (Hour 2)

*Redlight “A James Bond Complex”
*August & J “For Once”
*The Hood Internet f/ Psalm One & Tobaxxo “More Fun”
*Laibach “B Mashina” (new reissue)
*Vajra “Blind”, *Clinic “Miss You”
*Doro “Freiheit (Human Rights)”
*Bogan Via “Wait Up”
*Madness “Death Of A Rude Boy”
*Bullet SE “Warriors”
*Endless Shame “Winter Skies”
*Konshens “Jamaican Dance”
*Sleepless “I Waited”
*Geoff Tate “Dark Money”
*Plan B “Live Once”
*Eytan & The Embassy “Everything Changes”
*The Sexual Side Effect “An Hour Ago”
*The Stone Foxes “Everybody Knows”
*Raggedy Angry “Candy Unicorns”
*Steve Harris (Iron Maiden) “Karma Killer”
*The Virgin Mary’s “Dead Man’s Shoes”
*Cherries On A Blacklist “Chemicals”
*The Toadies “We Burned The City Down”
*DJ Eleven & Mike Baker f/ Blind Star “Provocateur”
JOAN JETT SONG OF THE WEEK: “Love Is All Around (Mary Tyler Moore Theme)”
*San Cisco “Golden Revolver”
*Crime And The City Solution “My Love Takes Me There” (new reissue)
*Kid Savant “NaNa Never Ends” (KMFDM remix)
*Dark Tranquility “The Bow And The Arrow”

Crocodiles & Dum Dum Girls (Christmas)

Crocodiles from San Diego have teamed up with our fave Dum Dum Girls for a one-off Christmas song.

(No coincidence that Brandon Welchez of Crocodiles (and former Dum Dum member) is married to front woman Dee Dee of Dum Dum Girls.)

Just in time for the holidays the amusingly titled “Merry Christmas Baby (Please Don’t Die)”.

Lopsided World of L

A special German broadcast from Jonathan L.

Lopsided World of L (Hour 1)

Lopsided World of L (Hour 2)


All music from artists from Germany or based in Germany sung in both Deutsch and English language

*Peter Fox “Stadtaffe”
*Joachim Witt “Gloria”
*Doro “Engel”
*Hans Jorg Grosse reads Franz Kafka “Die Baume”
*Heimataerde “Outremer”
*Rammstein “Pussy”
*Megaherz “Feinbild”
*Dorrn “Messin’ With Myself” (unplugged)
*Hans Jorg Grosse reads Franz Kafka “Kleider”
*Accept “Shadow Soldiers”
*Sep7ember ” I Hate N.Y.”
*Oomph “Augen Auf”
*Van Wolfen f/ Mascha & Brixton Boogie “Love For Sale”
*Hans Jorg Grosse reads Franz Kafka “Das Gassenfenster”
*Backyardloops “In Berlin (Baddaz Riddim)”
*Eisbrecher “Gothkiller”
*Kraftwerk “Antenne”
*Edith Hancke & Helen Vita “Joachimsthalerstrasse Ecke Augsburger Strasse”
*Die Toten Hosen “Ballast Der Republik”
*Rammstein “Haifisch” (Remix by Olsen Involtini)
*Nachtblut “Die Mutter Die Ihr Kind Verlor”
*Hans Jorg Grosse reads Franz Kafka “Auzug Aus Einem Brief An Oskar Pollak”
*Wumpscut “Jiddisch Is A Zwillink”
*Doro f/ Lemmy (Motorhead) “It Still Hurts”
*Vlad In Tears “Fallen Angel” (new mix-formly known as “Damnation”)
*Vargo “Those Were The Days”
*Tony deKaro “Lust”
*Ich + Ich “Danke”
*Mundtot “Endzeit”
*Riff-Raff “Dance Or Die”
*Wirtz “Wo Ich Steh”

Sufjan Stevens (Christmas)

It is exceedingly difficult to write a good Christmas song, more so to write a classic. And only a few artists have written more than one.

Sufjan Stevens has to be the most prolific composer of contemporary Christmas Songs.

In 2006 he gave us an incredible 5 volumes of holiday songs.

He follows this year 5 additional albums!

“Christmas in the Room” is from Silver & Gold: Songs for Christmas, Vols. 6-10.

Lopsided World of L

Jonathan L entertains from Berlin.

Lopsided World of L (Hour1)

Lopsided World of L (Hour 2)

*Frank Black Francis “Cactus” (performed live on Lopsided World Of L 2006)
*KIN “Winter Is Coming”
*Geoff Tate “In The Dirt”
*ZZ Ward f/Kendrick Lamar “Cryin’ Wolf”
*The Darkness “Nothin’s Gonna Stop Us”
*Onuinu “Ice Palace”
*Martin Clancy and the Elves Of Heaven “Hard Times On 34th Street” (replay from 2010-11)
*Wildlife Control “Brooklyn”
*The Vaccines “Teenage Icon”
*Mandasue Heller “Your Girlfriend Hates Me”
*Frightened Rabbit “State Hospital” (unedited version)
*Frightened Rabbit f/ Aidan Moffat (Arab Strap) “Wedding Gloves”
*Devon Townsend Project “Save Our Now”
*Michael Bernard Fitzgerald “Firecracker”
*Johnette Napolitano “Hang On” (2006 from Sketchbook 2-rare)
*Cody ChestnuTT “Love Is More Than A Wedding Day”
*The 69 Eyes “I’m Ready”
*Ronny Morris “Lilly”
*Stan Ridgway “Burnin’ For Your Love”
*Black Moth Super Rainbow “Dreamsicle Bomb”
*Breaking Laces “Mr. Curry Is A Cop”
*Blackmore’s Night “All The Fun Of The Fayre”
*Chris Keys and Oh No “Let Go”
*Dark Tranquility “Zero Distance”
*Heimataerde “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen” (Replay)
*Wintersun “Land Of Snow and Sorrow”
*Bruce Hammond Earlam “Nail The Snail” (Holiday version-replay 2010-11)


Clinic, the band from Liverpool, wear surgical masks onstage which reflects the precision of their distinctive sound.

It’s been the look of this experimental/psychedelic quartet for 15 years and we now have Free Reign, their 7th album.

“Miss You” the featured track.

Dropkick Murphys (Christmas)

‘Tis the season and it’s now time to drop some Christmas music onto this music blog.

Boston’s Irish punk rockers, Dropkick Murphys offer up this little Xmas gem appropriately titled “The Season’s Upon Us”.

Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds

It’s been 5 years since we last heard from Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds.

Push the Sky Away, their 15th, is expected in February.

The distinctive power and beauty of this formidable talent is once again heard in “We No Who U R”.

Lopsided World of L

Monday’s new music blast from Berlin hosted by the incomparableJonathan L.

Lopsided World of L (Hour 1)

Lopsided World of L (Hour 2)

*Dirty Epics “Dirty Dog”
*The 69 Eyes “Tonight”
*The Damned “Bad Time For Bonzo” (1982)
*Megaherz “Mann Im Mond”
*MS MR “Hurricane”
*Gold Fields “Dark Again (Lights Out)
*Geoff Tate “Say U Love Me”
*Geoff Tate “Take A Bullet”
*Astrid North “Thursday”
*Witchcraft “White Light Suicide”
*Amanda Palmer and the Grand Theft Orchestra “Melody Dean”
*The Moons “It’s Taking Over”
*Clan Of Xymox “A Forest” (Cure cover)
*Doro “The Night Of The Warlock” (2009)
*Echogram “London”
*X Marks The Pedwalk “A.I.C.S.I.N.”
*The Last Royals “Only The Brave”
*Rise “Pop Tart”
*Reel Big Fish “Famous Last Words”
*Jon Mullane “American Girl”
*Kazzoshay “Tryin’ (After Dark mix)
*Chamberlin “Jealousy”
JOAN JETT SONG OF THE WEEK: “I Hate Myself For Loving You”
*The Glass Hearts “Caught Up”
*Roc Marciano “76” (samples 10CC)
*Rubblebucket “Ooo Wa”
*Tony deKaro “Chasing Rainbows”