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The year is 1980, and you have been wondering all year, “What do you get a Wookiee for Christmas when he already owns a comb?” and BAM! like a gift from the heavens, your question is answered. The Star Wars Christmas Album hits store shelves containing memorable tracks like “R2-D2 We Wish You a Merry Christmas” and “What Can You Get a Wookiee For Christmas (When He Already Owns A Comb?)”.
Yet despite how awesome this may sound to your five year old little mind, the album was not as much of a success as you may have thought it would be. I mean the Star Wars Holiday Special is still talked about to this day (meaning it must have been AWESOME), but the album has faded into obscurity, remembered by only a handful of diehard fans over the decades to keep the memory alive.
Don’t get me wrong, the album has some notable mentions, such as the first ever professional recording of one John Bongiovi (better known as Jon Bon Jovi). How could this be forgotten?
It had been a a very long time since I last heard the album so I ended up purchasing the digitally remastered CD off of Amazon (linked above). It’s made to look like the original record release (which my collector soul so desperately wants) and I promptly popped it in my CD playing mechanism (which I had a very hard time finding in my house). As of this moment I haven’t heard it yet and I am prepping it to play right now so we can all live through this momentous occasion together.
I’m excited. Are you?
(Post listening edit: TRIGGER WARNING, we are going to talk about the album now. GET OUT NOW!)
Let’s hit play together. The first track is “Christmas in the Stars”, the title track for the album. We are greeted with C-3PO and R2-D2 talking about how Christmas gets earlier every year and they start to sing about Christmas. Of course C-3PO is voiced by Anthony Daniels because he’s always C-3PO. The album is meant to be listened to in order apparently, since the random talking continues at the end of the song eventually leading us into the next song.
Our next song “Bells, Bells, Bells” is C-3PO singing to R2-D2 about what bells are because he apparently hasn’t a clue. By this point in my listening, I’m contemplating murdering something. Yet I dig deep and find the will to continue on. Coincidently, C-3PO mentions Japanese bells, which means I guess there’s a Japan in the old legends continuity? There’s also apparently Christmas, so what am I doing nitpicking?
The third song “The Odds Against Christmas” finds C-3PO reminiscing of every bad song about Christmas wrapped up in one. This song completely removes this album from the Star Wars galaxy all together by mentioning the Magna Carta and other historical occurrences, but yet, we continue on.
The next song is easily the “best” song on the album (at least it’s the only one worth listening to), “What do you get a Wookiee for Christmas (When he already owns a comb?)”. The best thing about this song is Anthony Daniels isn’t singing the lead vocals. It’s narrated by a weird robot voice thing that steps in. Thank god. I think. I may have even found my butt shaking to the song, despite all attempts at stopping it. The tune is actually kind of catchy (ok, I’m sorry, I am ashamed of myself. DAMNIT butt, stop shaking!).
The last song on side 1 (this is a record reproduction) is “R2-D2 We wish you a Merry Christmas” where Anthony Daniels returns to talk over the damn music again. BUT we have the lead vocals this time given by the one and only Jon Bon Jovi, of which my wife listening was incredulous that it was actually him (it was). And that song is not nearly as atrocious as many I hear on the radio today. That’s a good thing, right? The tune is basically a bastardization of We Wish You a Merry Christmas (you don’t say), so I’ll let it slide.
Ok, so I flipped the CD over (not really) and started side B playing with “Sleigh Ride”. Oh joy of joys, the punishment I continue to endure for you. Here C-3PO explains to R2-D2 how to sing by “singing” a rhyming speech that eventually merges into the traditional “Sleigh Ride”. And he continues to f-----g talk over the damn music. Gah! I can’t understand the words for “Sleigh Ride” anyway so I assume they alter them to fit the theme but since it’s basically nonsense to me, I’m good (minus the incessant talk over). R2 eventually learns to whistle on his own. I know, its a f-----g miracle.
The punishment continues with the return of the robot voice (better than C-3PO but not by much) on “Merry, Merry Christmas”. It’s forgettable and easy to block out while I’m thinking of better things.
The next “song” is “A Christmas Sighting (‘Twas the Night Before Christmas’), which has C-3PO reciting the famous poem but for some reason he keeps referring to Santa as “S. Claus”. Why? Oh why? When will this thing end?
Anthony Daniels, GET OUT! GET OUT OF MY HEAD! Where was I? Oh yea, sorry. On we go…
The last song “Meaning of Christmas” is here and by this point all my fucks have been given away. Merry Christmas! Here we have Santa (I think, I blacked out for a bit, and I am NOT going back) explaining exactly what the meaning of Christmas is to C-3PO. The best thing I can say about this song is that the lead singer can actually sing and I don’t outright hate it. But it’s 8 minutes long. WHAT?!?! It’s still playing! I can hear it through the cotton in my ears.
Wait. What happened? I woke up on the floor. It appears my brain shut down to prevent further damage to find the music has finished. I can say one thing positive about this album. At least it’s only 34 minutes long.
Overall. Anthony Daniels should never be allowed to sing anything ever again. For all our sakes. If you are a legitimate fan of the Star Wars Holiday Special, then this album is for you. If for some reason, the Holiday Special is damn near impossible to watch and you’d rather have your skin filleted off your body while sitting on hot coals, then perhaps this would still be enjoyable. But I highly doubt it. So buy it for the nostalgia factor but under no circumstances should you actually play it. I considered burning my house down to save the world from this getting any further but I know that more copies exist and it would essentially be a fruitless gesture, so I abstained. You were warned.
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