Local Holiday Music: “The Holidays Don’t Have To Be So Rotten”

Crossroads of America Records is a family label.  By that, I ‘don’t mean that everyone on the label is a blood relative, actually only few of them are, but it’s a label of musicians and bands and friends who have shared stages, band members, resources, vehicles, maybe even a little saliva.  It’s a great group of musical people who support one another, and all year I’ve been thinking, ‘they should make a holiday album. I’d love to hear some of my favorite bands rocking my favorite Christmas songs during my favorite time of year.’

Well, they didn’t. BUT another member of the family, brother-label Flannelgraph Records, DID, and so we have the holiday compilation, The Holidays Don’t Have To Be So Rotten. A great start toward my dream. (Note: Yes, I know most people relate these relationships as ‘sisters’ – sister label, sister ship, sister organization – but these labels are run by men, and so I’m calling it what it is)

Leave no doubt, I LOVE my Christmas tunes.  It’s not at all uncommon to find me belting out a little “Jingle Bell Rock” in the middle of, say, April. But one thing I love even more than holiday music classics, is ORIGINAL holiday music.  Hearing new songs to become staples in my favorite holiday is incredibly inspiring.  It’s great to hear what elements get incorporated into new tunes and how they bring out more contemporary meanings it what this season means to people.  And for that, this album is a must-have in any Holiday music enthusiasts’ collection.

The album features a wide variety of local and regional musicians, including some from XRA bands such as Frank Schweikhardt. And if you are a husband&wife fan, check out the second track by bandmember Mike Adams.  It’s a good taste into what’s to come from his solo album due out on Flannelgraph soon, under the moniker Mike Adams At His Honest Weight.  Other contributors include Drekka, Memory Map, Chad Serhal, Sleeping Bag, and The Parade Schedule, among others.

To sweeten the deal 100% of the proceeds from the album go to a charity selected by the contributing artist.  Tis the season, right?  And as for the great cover art, it was done by Gavin Smith, whom Midwest fans may remember from a little band called Baxter Kid Disaster; or in my case you know that band because you’ve seen it on random XRA band members’ t-shirts.

Check out the album here, and if you click on each individual song you can see which charity they are supporting! Happy Holidays!


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