The only time that I listen to the radio anymore -- really since 1994 -- is when I go home to visit my mom. She's a self-proclaimed "easy listener," though a hip one, especially for a nearly 60-year-old woman, as she prefers Gwen Stefani's "Sweet Escape" to Neil Diamond's "Sweet Caroline" and from time to time I can handle that (case in point: I just put Enya's Greatest Hits on my iPod last night).
When I was in Wisconsin last weekend for Thanksgiving and we were driving around doing errands I came to find out that her "easy listening" station had been hijacked and the only thing they were playing was Christmas music. Don't get me wrong -- I loved the A Very Special Christmas Albums (they remind me of waking up at 4:30 on Christmas morning and playing Sonic the Hedgehog with my brothers until my parents got out of bed and we could finally open presents) but I don't need to be assaulted by Josh Groban's pukey version of "O Holy Night" six times a day (much less ever).
So just when I thought I'd never want to hear another Christmas song again, I learned that Joan Jett's Blackheart record label has put A Blackheart Christmas on vinyl for the first time. The album includes Girl in a Coma, The Dollyrots, The Vacancies and The Cute Lepers -- all artists featured on Jett's Blackheart Records, a company she started over 25 years ago, making her the first woman to start her own rock label. Joan herself even makes an appearance and closes out the album with her rendition of "Silent Night."
-- NOAH MICHELSON
Previously > Behind the Music with Ani Difranco