Winter lights and starry nights (Klub Kakofanney Lockdown Letter)

Winter lights and starry nights

Are you ready for some music? Last week I looked back though the archives for some great pieces of rock from our Klub Kakofanney nights. This week I've dug out some special pieces for you from our equally eclectic Klub Kakofanney Sunday Sessions.

There's a starry song by the Brooklyn and Oxford duo, Tracy Island, a blues masterpiece from Tony and Sal, a song about the Oxford South Gate by the medieval maestro Mark Atherton and his movable feast of friends, the ever-entertaining avant garde music of Adam and Elvis, and a rousing piece from our favourite landlocked sea-shanty band, The Monkeyfists. These grainy videos were all filmed on dark winter afternoons, and illuminated with battery-powered coloured lamps.

How many of you thought that Whiskey In The Jar was written by Thin Lizzy in the 1970s? Or possibly you thought it was penned by The Dubliners in the 1990s. Or maybe you are even younger than you look and know only the Metallica version. Actually its a traditional Irish folk song that dates back to the 17th century and is a ballad about the Irish highwayman, Patrick Fleming.

No reindeer, one horse

Last week I gave you some alternatives to the traditional sugar-drenched nonsense we hear on the radio every December. Continuing that theme, what about ska-styled version of Jingle Bells? Here is one by a band called Skayway. The Youtube title describes them as a Japanese band, but I think they are actually from Manila in the Philippines.

The sound of Christmas

Christmas songs don't have to be full of reindeer and jingle bells. Remember Jonah Louis and "Stop the cavalry", or Joan Jett and "Little drummer boy", for example? Here is a song which, every time I hear it, makes me think it should be a Christmas song. It is by one of my most favourite London bands, The Healthy Junkies, a band which has done so much to support the indie punk and rock music scene across the UK. This song is called "The sound of my guitar". Does it sound like a potential Christmassy rock song to you too?

I see a star

Does your Christmas tree ever get the urge to get up and dance around the room? Here is whole troupe of dancing trees. The song is called "Boom Boom" and it is sung by Momoland, which is a South Korean all-girl K-pop band from Seoul, but the dance is performed by Taggme Planet, which is a Mexican arts group who filmed this video in Mexico City. Strangely this innocent video begins with a warning that some of the material in it may be innappropriate for the under 13s. Maybe it is because you can see their baubles.

Lights in the darkness

This Sunday, the 13th December, is Saint Lucy's Day. This little known saint, the patron saint of the blind and visually impaired, is celebrated in Nordic countries. Finland holds Lucia-kulkue, a joyful winter parade in which a maiden chosen to represent Saint Lucy wears a crown of candles and, accompanied by her many elves, carries light through the city, bringing light to the darkest winter days.

Perhaps on Sunday I'll turn on my own coloured lights, eat a saffron bun, and beam some bright vibrant thoughts in your direction.

11th December 2020
The Lockdown Letters
Klub Kakofanney