On the Holiday Highway, Christmas Jug Band (Globe)
The long-running acoustic-folk-swing-rockabillly-Dixieland-Americana and yes, jug band combo made up of well-known San Franciscan musicians is back for 2009 with an album recorded live over the past couple of seasons, compiling parody songs, some originals, and a fair amount of jug band jamming. In other words, the same M.O. exhibited over their four other albums. Things kick off with the instrumental "Shoot 'Em In the Pants," swinging into some originals, including "Carolin'," "This Christmas Night" and "Santa's Going Crazy This Year." "Jolly Ol' Soul" features Dan Hicks taking off on "My Blue Heaven," and later "Santa, the Man," based on "Song For My Father." Tim Eschliman gets into the act with "High Stack o' Presents" based on "High Blood Pressure," plus "Santa's on the Mainline," from the song originally about Jesus. Country Joe McDonald stops by with "Dirty Claus Rag," and the crew brings us a blues boogie, "Christmas in the Bottle," about an alcoholic holiday. As an antidote, they also bring us "Xmas Anonymous." All told, another light-hearted romp from some West Coast experts in old-school American music.
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