Episode 344: Jingle Horse 6: Jingle Horse with No Name

World Animal Day approaches (probably), and we are celebrating (kind of) with two festive songs about animal companions! “Santa Claus Rides a Strawberry Roan” by Jim Lowe is unfortunately less about celebrating its titular animal companion and more about shit-talking reindeer. “Jingles the Christmas Cat” by Freddy Cole doesn’t give us much more in terms of lore, but dang, does it go down smooth.

The ranking music in this episode is, of course, “A Horse with No Name” by America.

Thank you to Myles for requesting “Santa Claus Rides a Strawberry Roan”!

Episode 343: An Inexplicably Good Time

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Since the High Holidays are just around the corner, we’re listening to two songs celebrating their winter-time relative, Hanukkah! By request, we hear “The Night of the Dreidel” by Craig Carothers, a song with an epic-sounding title that tells a smaller, sweeter story about a drama-free holiday. But don’t worry, “The Chanukah Song (We Are Lights)” performed by Jane Olivor has plenty of dramatic flair. Also: we got an email!

The ranking music in this episode is “Eight Candles (A Song for Hanukkah)” by Dave Koz.

Thank you to Jo for requesting “The Night of the Dreidel”!

Episode 342: Our Podcast Got Run Over By GGROBAR

It’s been a long month, and we’re closing it out by going back to the beginning. Randy Brooks’s own version of “Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer” joins our list, as does his own parody of his own novelty hit, “Grandma Got Run Over by Corona”. The bar is low and he’s just gotta clear it to get us to the end of this freaking month!!

The ranking music in this, and all August Got Run Over By a Reindeer (AGROBAR) episodes, is “Everything Sucks” by Reel Big Fish, and you can’t take that away from us.

Episode 341: Our Podcast Got Run Over By Regional Accents

It’s the second installment of our inexplicable self-inflected psychological experiment, August Got Run Over By a Reindeer! Our theme for these started out as “grandparents being run over by other, non-sleigh vehicles”, but we discovered a variety of common threads. “Grandpa Got Runned Over By a John Deere” by Cledus T. Judd and “Grandpa Got Run Over By a Beer Truck” by Da Yoopers both turn the tables on grandpa, and also, they’re both bad!

Our ranking music is… well, you’ll understand.

Episode 340: Our Podcast Got Run Over By Some Ska-Punk

Well, it’s come to this. Welcome to our first installment of “August Got Run Over By a Reindeer”, a month-long “celebration” of the many, many mutations of Elmo and Patsy’s 1979 novelty hit, “Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer”. We ease our way in with two covers recorded by some familiar, nostalgic musical acts – Less Than Jake and Reel Big Fish.

This week’s ranking music is “Everything Sucks” by Reel Big Fish!

Episode 339: Birthday Boy’s Big Band Christmas

It’s Ian’s birthday (soon)! So he’s running the dang podcast!!! For his Birthday Boy’s Choice picks, he lands on two classic-adjacent tunes from years not yet covered on the show. “Happy Holidays” by Bing Crosby (with the Music Maid and Hal and John Scott Trotter and His Orchestra) seems like a commercial for hotels masquerading as a Christmas song, but it’s actually a stealth New Year’s song masquerading as musical theatre masquerading as a Christmas song. “Winter Weather” by Benny Goodman (with vocals by Peggy Lee and Art Lund) is a refreshing clarinet-heavy palate cleanser.

The ranking music in this episode is the medley from history’s greatest film, Muppet Family Christmas.

Episode 338: Is the Jam Jar Half Empty or Half Full?

We’re back on our bullshit! Our bullshit being “discussing listener requests”. We take a look at two songs with a surprising amount in common – “Lonely Christmas” by WALLIS and “Alien Christmas” by Tay Zonday. Both are 2020 Christmas songs by artists who got their start by going viral on youtube – and both beg the question, “ok but is this good actually?”

The ranking music in this episode is “Chocolate Rain” by Tay Zonday.

Thank you to our #1 Fan TimeMachine for these requests!

Episode 337: The Bluegrass is Greener

We’re going to be taking our next scheduled episode off because we’re doing some traveling this month. To help prepare us for our trip to the U.S., we’re taking two requests for some good old fashioned American country music. “Christmas Time’s A-Comin'” by Emmylou Harris is a song from a country tradition we enjoy, namely bluegrass. “364 Days to Go” by Brad Paisley is … Well, it’s definitely better than his other entry on our list.

This week’s ranking music is “Christmas Time’s A-Comin'” as performed by Bill Monroe.

Thank you to James for the requests!

Episode 336: Santa Thanks

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This week on HARK, we’ve got two songs with the same title and very different stakes. By request, we cover “Santa Please” by Bill Medley, a tale of alcoholism, regret and reconciliation at Christmas that leaves us troubled. Then, we discuss “Santa Please” by Toni Braxton, which is basically just four minutes of the singer sexily asking to speak to the manager about travel logistics. The manager is Santa Claus.

The ranking music in this episode is “Please Daddy Don’t Get Drunk This Christmas” as performed by The Decemberists.

Thank you to Misty for requesting the Bill Medley song!

Episode 335: Backup Episode

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Sometimes we take requests, and sometimes we take a while to cover those requests. And sometimes, sometimes, someone who’s waiting to hear us cover their request sends us back-up requests in case their first requests were not holidays-ish enough. Thus, sometimes — specifically this time — Ian uncerimoniously schedules those backup requests for an episode several years later even though one of them is about a incredibly sad real-world tragedy. Soooo, we’re talking about “Christmas Eve Blues” by Blind Lemon Jefferson and “1913 Massacre” by Woody Guthrie.

The ranking music for this episode is “Solidarity Forever” as performed by The Mountain Goats.

Thank you to Myles for these (backup) requests!