Friday, December 13, 2013
White Christmas: The Wailers
I love the incongruity of this on so many levels. Firstly the whole idea of snow in Trenchtown seems likely to be counter-intuitive, at least acknowledged within the lyrical change: "not" like the ones I used to know. Secondly, both the song and the pictures of the fresh-faced youngsters seem so far removed from dreadlocked ganga images, being far more akin to early motown with a sloppy ska bluebeat. Thirdly, anything that replaces the cheese of Bing with this happy smile is just fine by me. OK, it was very early in the career of Marley, Bunny Wailer and Peter Tosh, presumably the 3 vocalists, and I dare so that they seldom dragged it out in their later incarnations. Legalise It it ain't. And I'm also tempted to think their elderly aunties could listen to this and muse, disappointedly, on how it all went so wrong!!
There is actually quite a strong tradition of ska-rry eyed yuletide songs in the reggae canon, so I have dug out a couple more. Here is Ding Dong Bell by the Ethiopians and Christmas Day by Barrington Levy . You might note that the youtube publisher for each goes by the monicker of RastaClaus85 and has put up several others.