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Do/Will TTRH Fans Have A Special Affinity for CitH?
Yes 70%  70%  [ 19 ]
No 15%  15%  [ 4 ]
Don't Know 15%  15%  [ 4 ]
Total votes : 27
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PostPosted: Fri September 18th, 2009, 14:29 GMT 
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I have the "do/will" split since the "Christmas in the Heart" samples have disappeared from the Amazon.uk.co site as mysteriously as they appeared. Serendipitously, I recorded those tracks for use (fair use/review Nota Bene: Sony) a planned Dreamtime podcast that I hope to have out over the weekend.

But what I wanted to discuss is the feeling that I've read now not only in Expecting Rain but also on various blogs and even a few "major media" outlets, that CitH is a deliberate extension of the retro-feel that Mr. D. applied to Theme Time Radio Hour. If you heard the samples, you'll understand why. My first reaction was that "Jack Frost" had deliberately gone with a "Sing-Along with Mitch" feel. All the cuts sounded as if the could have been from a mid to late `50s Christmas album.

The Wall Street Journal notes...
Quote:
Fan reaction will be mixed: fun and campy, like his persona on his XM “Theme Time Radio” show?


... and, as I said, if you have the time to wade through the extended commentary in the "Samples" post in "General Discussion," you'll find several posts expressing the sentiment that "if you liked TTRH, you'll like CitH."

So, what do you think? Get your vote in before Sunday, 'cause I'd like to use the comments in my podcast.


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PostPosted: Sun September 30th, 2012, 10:57 GMT 
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Love them both. Same kind of genius , that not all Dylan fans dig. Here on ER most people seem to hate CITH and don't care much about Theme Time. I wonder if all Dylan fans think that way...
Jack Frost fans , reveal yourselves 8)


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PostPosted: Mon November 19th, 2012, 03:36 GMT 
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Theme Time Radio Hour was a major accomplishment and tremendously entertaining. It only shortcoming is that it did not continue. Bob took great efforts to acquaint the world with music that influenced his work and the work of artists across the musical landscape... many voices influential in their time but nearly forgotten.

I wish they'd bring it back but I fear this bus has left the station.


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PostPosted: Wed November 21st, 2012, 15:55 GMT 
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theme time is one of my absolute favourite things in the world. it's funny, touching, informative, and full of really great music. bob also makes a really incredible presenter in so many ways, i can't begin to describe it really. just brilliant, one of the best things in my musical world. haven't listened to all of it yet, i listen to a few episodes a week on average, sometimes less, sometimes more. i'm gonna listen to all of them before i revisit any. love it.

christmas in the heart, on the other hand, is one of the worst albums i have ever heard and one of the musical experiences i've had which i wish i could simply erase from memory, and ideally reclaim the time that it wasted and instead listen to something else. but i can't, and it sticks firmly in my mind as one of the most saddeningly awful things i've ever heard. i'm aware that there is a cultural divide between me and bob which prevents me from engaging with the record to some extent - i'm not american, am only eighteen, and have grown up in an environment where christmas was celebrated mostly just because everybody else did and it was an excuse to have a big family party of the sort that could only happen if there was a special occasion for it - there was nothing special about christmas for me except that it was the time of year that had been chosen to be the special one (not that this made it any less good or special). i'm not familiar with or fond of american christmas music. there seems to be some special thing in the album that i'm missing, that i'm unable to connect with. regardless, the thing just sounds so awful to me, to put it plainly. the contrast between the saccharine backing (which sounds to me like the instrumental music that they play here at supermarkets and shopping centres around christmas time) and dylan's croaky unmusical singing is too much for me to bear.

the christmas episodes of theme time serves the same purpose much better, so far as i can see. despite the aforementioned cultural gap, i finish listening to the christmas episodes feeling like i have empathised greatly with a warm feeling that comes from the christmas tradition, as expressed in a variety of interesting musical forms. i finished listening to cith feeling really alone and scared and confused, and hadn't learned anything much, other than not to listen to it again.

this is just my view; if you love christmas in the heart then good on you, it would be pretty stupid of me to hate you for liking something that i don't


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PostPosted: Wed November 21st, 2012, 18:54 GMT 
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I LOVE Christmas in the heart and HATE all the TTRH episodes ... except for the Christmas episode, which I love. But I'm not sure what gives with that.


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PostPosted: Wed November 21st, 2012, 19:22 GMT 
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tellmemomma1966 wrote:
theme time is one of my absolute favourite things in the world. it's funny, touching, informative, and full of really great music. bob also makes a really incredible presenter in so many ways, i can't begin to describe it really. just brilliant, one of the best things in my musical world. haven't listened to all of it yet, i listen to a few episodes a week on average, sometimes less, sometimes more. i'm gonna listen to all of them before i revisit any. love it.

christmas in the heart, on the other hand, is one of the worst albums i have ever heard and one of the musical experiences i've had which i wish i could simply erase from memory, and ideally reclaim the time that it wasted and instead listen to something else. but i can't, and it sticks firmly in my mind as one of the most saddeningly awful things i've ever heard. i'm aware that there is a cultural divide between me and bob which prevents me from engaging with the record to some extent - i'm not american, am only eighteen, and have grown up in an environment where christmas was celebrated mostly just because everybody else did and it was an excuse to have a big family party of the sort that could only happen if there was a special occasion for it - there was nothing special about christmas for me except that it was the time of year that had been chosen to be the special one (not that this made it any less good or special). i'm not familiar with or fond of american christmas music. there seems to be some special thing in the album that i'm missing, that i'm unable to connect with. regardless, the thing just sounds so awful to me, to put it plainly. the contrast between the saccharine backing (which sounds to me like the instrumental music that they play here at supermarkets and shopping centres around christmas time) and dylan's croaky unmusical singing is too much for me to bear.

the christmas episodes of theme time serves the same purpose much better, so far as i can see. despite the aforementioned cultural gap, i finish listening to the christmas episodes feeling like i have empathised greatly with a warm feeling that comes from the christmas tradition, as expressed in a variety of interesting musical forms. i finished listening to cith feeling really alone and scared and confused, and hadn't learned anything much, other than not to listen to it again.

this is just my view; if you love christmas in the heart then good on you, it would be pretty stupid of me to hate you for liking something that i don't



Dude , you don't have to believe in Christmas or even be familiar to them. I hate religion and love CITH . Frankly , i don't think Bob is so familiar to the American christmas traditions either , him being raised as a Jew...
Anyway , there's no point in arguing i guess , if you say Dylan's singing is bad . We just hear different things . Dylan's voice is poetry to me , and i'm tired of people saying it's bad. Of course it's technically not good but who cares ? I don't care about a good voice like Adele's or something like that. I mean i respect it , but i just don't care about it .
Most of the singers that i love have odd voices and are considered by many to be unalble to sing. (Leonard Cohen , Tom Waits , Patti Smith etc )
Anyway , my point is : what you're saying is not special . It's too obvious . An old guy with a very peculiar voice singing joyfull songs about Christmas . The idea sounds funny , provocative and bad . 99% of the people i know would see it that way . You have to look deeper than that , otherwise you're missing the point.

I wouldn't argue but i see you dig TTRH and that's cool. It means you dig Dylan's trolling because you see it's so ... honest :wink:
So give another listen to CITH with an open mind !


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PostPosted: Wed November 21st, 2012, 21:38 GMT 
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CITH I don't think was ever intended as a serious album and I don't think it will be viewed as such in the future, especially with Bob re-affirming his stregnth with Tempest. CITH is just one of these brilliant curveballs from Dylan. He may aswell make a christmas album so he did. What a wonderful juxtaposition in his almost unanimously critically acclaimed run since TOOM - just a reminder that Bob can do wierd shit. I haven't listened to it since last Christmas Eve (It's becoming a yearly ritual) but it is a really really wierd thing.


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PostPosted: Thu November 22nd, 2012, 00:10 GMT 
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Tragos114 wrote:
tellmemomma1966 wrote:
theme time is one of my absolute favourite things in the world. it's funny, touching, informative, and full of really great music. bob also makes a really incredible presenter in so many ways, i can't begin to describe it really. just brilliant, one of the best things in my musical world. haven't listened to all of it yet, i listen to a few episodes a week on average, sometimes less, sometimes more. i'm gonna listen to all of them before i revisit any. love it.

christmas in the heart, on the other hand, is one of the worst albums i have ever heard and one of the musical experiences i've had which i wish i could simply erase from memory, and ideally reclaim the time that it wasted and instead listen to something else. but i can't, and it sticks firmly in my mind as one of the most saddeningly awful things i've ever heard. i'm aware that there is a cultural divide between me and bob which prevents me from engaging with the record to some extent - i'm not american, am only eighteen, and have grown up in an environment where christmas was celebrated mostly just because everybody else did and it was an excuse to have a big family party of the sort that could only happen if there was a special occasion for it - there was nothing special about christmas for me except that it was the time of year that had been chosen to be the special one (not that this made it any less good or special). i'm not familiar with or fond of american christmas music. there seems to be some special thing in the album that i'm missing, that i'm unable to connect with. regardless, the thing just sounds so awful to me, to put it plainly. the contrast between the saccharine backing (which sounds to me like the instrumental music that they play here at supermarkets and shopping centres around christmas time) and dylan's croaky unmusical singing is too much for me to bear.

the christmas episodes of theme time serves the same purpose much better, so far as i can see. despite the aforementioned cultural gap, i finish listening to the christmas episodes feeling like i have empathised greatly with a warm feeling that comes from the christmas tradition, as expressed in a variety of interesting musical forms. i finished listening to cith feeling really alone and scared and confused, and hadn't learned anything much, other than not to listen to it again.

this is just my view; if you love christmas in the heart then good on you, it would be pretty stupid of me to hate you for liking something that i don't



Dude , you don't have to believe in Christmas or even be familiar to them. I hate religion and love CITH . Frankly , i don't think Bob is so familiar to the American christmas traditions either , him being raised as a Jew...
Anyway , there's no point in arguing i guess , if you say Dylan's singing is bad . We just hear different things . Dylan's voice is poetry to me , and i'm tired of people saying it's bad. Of course it's technically not good but who cares ? I don't care about a good voice like Adele's or something like that. I mean i respect it , but i just don't care about it .
Most of the singers that i love have odd voices and are considered by many to be unalble to sing. (Leonard Cohen , Tom Waits , Patti Smith etc )
Anyway , my point is : what you're saying is not special . It's too obvious . An old guy with a very peculiar voice singing joyfull songs about Christmas . The idea sounds funny , provocative and bad . 99% of the people i know would see it that way . You have to look deeper than that , otherwise you're missing the point.

I wouldn't argue but i see you dig TTRH and that's cool. It means you dig Dylan's trolling because you see it's so ... honest :wink:
So give another listen to CITH with an open mind !


nooooooooooope got too much music that i enjoy listening to to listen to, sorry

what a weird thing to tell me to do

what you are saying is also the epitome of not special (not that anybody is special; there are 7 billion people and they're all saying the same things most of the time); "my celebrity hero is different! he's not like other celebrity heroes! everything he does is special because he does it!"


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PostPosted: Thu November 22nd, 2012, 05:34 GMT 
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Not many "celebrity heroes" still walking the planet have done what Bob's done.

Every year I play what I call "The Bob Dylan Christmas Special" -- the best of the TTRH episode mixed with the best CITH tracks. Works like a charm. "Must Be Santa" right after Bob's rendition of "The Night Before Christmas" is a perfect combo.


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PostPosted: Thu November 22nd, 2012, 08:34 GMT 
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Tragos114 wrote:
tellmemomma1966 wrote:
theme time is one of my absolute favourite things in the world. it's funny, touching, informative, and full of really great music. bob also makes a really incredible presenter in so many ways, i can't begin to describe it really. just brilliant, one of the best things in my musical world. haven't listened to all of it yet, i listen to a few episodes a week on average, sometimes less, sometimes more. i'm gonna listen to all of them before i revisit any. love it.

christmas in the heart, on the other hand, is one of the worst albums i have ever heard and one of the musical experiences i've had which i wish i could simply erase from memory, and ideally reclaim the time that it wasted and instead listen to something else. but i can't, and it sticks firmly in my mind as one of the most saddeningly awful things i've ever heard. i'm aware that there is a cultural divide between me and bob which prevents me from engaging with the record to some extent - i'm not american, am only eighteen, and have grown up in an environment where christmas was celebrated mostly just because everybody else did and it was an excuse to have a big family party of the sort that could only happen if there was a special occasion for it - there was nothing special about christmas for me except that it was the time of year that had been chosen to be the special one (not that this made it any less good or special). i'm not familiar with or fond of american christmas music. there seems to be some special thing in the album that i'm missing, that i'm unable to connect with. regardless, the thing just sounds so awful to me, to put it plainly. the contrast between the saccharine backing (which sounds to me like the instrumental music that they play here at supermarkets and shopping centres around christmas time) and dylan's croaky unmusical singing is too much for me to bear.

the christmas episodes of theme time serves the same purpose much better, so far as i can see. despite the aforementioned cultural gap, i finish listening to the christmas episodes feeling like i have empathised greatly with a warm feeling that comes from the christmas tradition, as expressed in a variety of interesting musical forms. i finished listening to cith feeling really alone and scared and confused, and hadn't learned anything much, other than not to listen to it again.

this is just my view; if you love christmas in the heart then good on you, it would be pretty stupid of me to hate you for liking something that i don't



Dude , you don't have to believe in Christmas or even be familiar to them. I hate religion and love CITH . Frankly , i don't think Bob is so familiar to the American christmas traditions either , him being raised as a Jew...
Anyway , there's no point in arguing i guess , if you say Dylan's singing is bad . We just hear different things . Dylan's voice is poetry to me , and i'm tired of people saying it's bad. Of course it's technically not good but who cares ? I don't care about a good voice like Adele's or something like that. I mean i respect it , but i just don't care about it .
Most of the singers that i love have odd voices and are considered by many to be unalble to sing. (Leonard Cohen , Tom Waits , Patti Smith etc )
Anyway , my point is : what you're saying is not special . It's too obvious . An old guy with a very peculiar voice singing joyfull songs about Christmas . The idea sounds funny , provocative and bad . 99% of the people i know would see it that way . You have to look deeper than that , otherwise you're missing the point.

I wouldn't argue but i see you dig TTRH and that's cool. It means you dig Dylan's trolling because you see it's so ... honest :wink:
So give another listen to CITH with an open mind !


actually a large part of my appreciation for it is exactly what Momma is framing as a regional or cultural affinity. The imagery approach and style of the album is planted squarely in 50s americana - you had adults starting families who had come home from the war trying to create an ideal of Americana Principalia within the walls of their houses, and they did it by playing Bing and Frank and decorating things in the exact idealistic fashion that makes up the cover of the album. 40+ plus later dylan makes a gesture that seems to repeat the intention and the action, also about 20 years past the point that similar Pop status figures were digging into the kitschy Xmas well like it was their job in the 90s....Garth Brooks for instance, but when dylan takes a crack at it he creates this nightmarish fantastical creation.


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PostPosted: Thu November 22nd, 2012, 13:44 GMT 
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tellmemomma1966 wrote:

nooooooooooope got too much music that i enjoy listening to to listen to, sorry

what a weird thing to tell me to do

what you are saying is also the epitome of not special (not that anybody is special; there are 7 billion people and they're all saying the same things most of the time); "my celebrity hero is different! he's not like other celebrity heroes! everything he does is special because he does it!"


So nobody's special , right? Is that what you're saying? Surely that would mean that the " music that you enjoy listening to" is not special either...
Well , even though i'm not certain about anything in the world and i'm willing to change my opinions anytime , in the meantime i have to accept that there's up and down , good and bad , special and boring etc up to a degree otherwise i would not see the point in living .
And Bob Dylan is not my " celebrity hero" , Andy ! :lol:
And , for the record , most people aren't usually for something special , they just try to find what's " normal" so that they are accepted by society .



Hey Troub , what is it you don't like about TTRH ?


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PostPosted: Thu November 22nd, 2012, 14:51 GMT 
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Dylan recorded some Christmas songs back around the time he was in the studio for Empire Burlesque... its an idea that had occurred previously but Christmas In the Heart is in every way, Dylan at his finest. The song selection is fabulous, there is some wonderful variety in the selections, the instruments and arrangements are fantastic, his vocals warm and rich... and it is everything that nobody expected. There is a bit of the "folk going electric/rock going gospel/do exactly what nobody expects" going on here. He isn't going to be pinned down.

Most artists do sappy Christmas albums as a way to pad their wallet... they have a following that will purchase anything they produce so they do a Christmas album to cash in on their celebrity. But who in the world would ever expect Dylan to do that? And then he turns around and donates the proceeds to Feeding America. Who can possibly say "No!" to that... he's guilted his fans into buying it whether they want it or not so he can raise money for the less fortunate. Absolutely brilliant and oh-so-Dylan! :lol:

And I stand by my love of Christmas In the Heart... it stands among Dylan's very finest studio albums as one that can be listened to over and over and it just gets better with each revolution of the turntable/player.


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