Last week’s prediction: A Dipset Christmas
To the extent that I understand holiday music at all, it’s as a technique: Aural comfort designed to unobtrusively class up December Christmas parties and supply low level motivation to otherwise debt-shy Bloomingdales shoppers. A lot of this music is surprisingly un-ecclesiastic–the Bing Crosby/Sinatra axis, the Shangri-Las, anything that sounds old and cheery, basically (I saw “Rubberband Man” absolutely slay a holiday party a few years ago; maybe it was the choir of kids in the background?). Let’s throw Tony Bennett in there too.
Then there’s seasonal music like last week’s single from Melissa Etheridge, which, to skew a little Vivian Girls for a second, I imagine primarily as bumping in the suburban SUV, Housewife Motivation 101 for errands at the strip mall. This is how you hypnotize yourself into that narcotic, money-dispensing, stranger-hugging mode that starts around right now and ends, emphatically, on the morning of January 1.
This week’s single, on the other hand, sports country doyenne Faith Hill howling her way through “O Holy Night!,” exclamation point sic–this is Christmas music that demands not just faith in god but in the idea of a finale that will absolutely interrupt any conversation of any kind within range of the living room (or fitting room) speakers.
Next week’s prediction: “Cop Killer”