Saturday, December 23, 2023

Too-ra loo-ra loo-ra: Christmas Lullaby covers

Fairytale of New York isn't the only Christmas song the recently passed Shane MacGowan wrote, with his band The Popes, he released 'Christmas Lullaby' in 1996.

On this site, I found background info on the song:
Shane "borrows" the music for the verses from "Lucy" a tune written by Nick Cave, Blixa Bargeld, and Roland Wolf and released on Cave's "The Good Son" lp (1990). Shane sang it on the "It's a Wonderful World" single he and Cave released together in 1992 (Nick does a pretty good cover of "Rainy Night in Soho" on the same release). The chorus is lifted from the song "Too Ra Loo Ra" by James Royce Shannon (1881-1946) and premiered in Chauncey Olcott's production of Shameen Dhu ("Black-haired Jimmy"). It was popularized by Bing Crosby in the movie Going My Way (1944), a flick which won 7 Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Director, and a Best Actor nod to Crosby.

I searched for a bunch of nice covers, and found these:

Irish ska. Yep. And it works:
For the 1998 compilation 'Zo, Dit is Kerst', Dutch singer Peter te Bos (of Claw Boys Claw, who recorded THIS xmas original) sang Shane:
Just released, from a cool compilation, this acoustic version by Jeremy Porter & the Tucos:
Violins only:
Damn fine version by Weeping Willows: