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Lord God I Hate The Damn Christmas Songs

It's admittedly just as tired to complain about the ubiquity of Christmas songs this time of year as is their ubiquity itself, but a particular jarring shove into the season's soundtrack recently inspired me to cobble together a response, however impotent, in the form of this show. Other things, therefore, that I'd rather listen to than the damn Christmas songs. -- NS

° Bascom Lamar Lunsford: Lost John Dean

Times Ain't Like They Used To Be, Vol. 1 (Yazoo)

° Celeste Cappelli and friends: L 'è Rivà d'Un Bastimento (A Ship Has Come In) (2:49)

Italian Treasury: Lombardia (Alan Lomax Collection/Rounder)

° Abida Parveen: Ho Jamalo (3:18)

The Best of Abida Parveen (Music Today)

° John Jacob Niles: American Street, Field, and Jail House Cries (6:15)

Sings American Folk and Gambling Songs (RCA Camden)*

*One of the more bizarre of Niles' adaptations - and no source given. First released in 1939 on 78rpm record as "Street Cries," he no doubt took some liberties with this expanded version. Niles is responsible for some well-known arrangements of Christmas material, such as his "Seven Joys of Mary" and the "Kentucky Wassail" - they're of course out of bounds for this show. Besides, I don't have copies of them, and thanks to Scorsese's Dylan documentary with its four seconds of a Niles appearance, his records have gone from selling for $3.99 (the price of this one this summer) on Ebay to ten times that. Two 45s of his Christmas folk songs are currently priced to sell at $155 and $170. Now that's the Christmas spirit!

° Fairuz: Ya Natour El Amriye (2:36)
In a Sentimental Mood (EMI/Voix de l'Orient)

° Pink Anderson and Simmie Dooley: Every Day In the Week Blues
Sinners and Saints, 1926-1931 (Document)

° The Symbols: The Wrong Girl (2:46)
Aladdin & Imperial R&B Vocal Group Magic, Vol. 6 (Aladdin/Imperial)

° Lillian Leach and The Mellows: Yesterday's Memories (3:00)
Presenting Lillian Leach and The Mellows (Relic)

° Nimrod Workman: Brown Lung Blues (3:12)
Mike Rivers recordings, Elkins, WV, 1978 (unissued/forthcoming...?)


Goodbye Dear Old Stepstone


Traditional, folk, vernacular, endangered, and extinct music from America and elsewhere. Hosted by Nathan Salsburg, an archivist, producer, and writer based in Louisville, Kentucky.

He has worked for the The Alan Lomax Archive since 2000, for which he currently serves in the capacities of production manager, photo and video archivist, and general digital catalog editor. Salsburg maintains an index of online vernacular music resources at his blog,, contributes occasional music writing to the Louisville Eccentric Observer and the Other Music weekly update, and is curator of Twos & Fews, a vernacular music imprint in collaboration with Chicago's Drag City label.