TRAMP RECORDS: Santa’s Funk & Soul Christmas Party Vol. 2 (2013)

Rating: ★★★★★ “Well, I wish it could be Christmas every day-a-ayy!” Yeah? I don’t. Christ. Quite apart from the rampant commercialism, the shite on TV and the family arguments, we now face just over a month of the same twenty seasonal pop songs and the same five traditional seasonal songs being played in shops, pubs, office parties, on the telly or even at home over and over. And over. And. Over. Deck the halls with boughs of holly? Fa la la la la, la la fuck-off. Unless of course, that’s Little Jimmy Thomas’s version of Deck The Halls

Frankly, German label Tramp should be given some sort of award for services to humankind. As if it weren’t enough to put together one quality compilation of Christmas-themed funk and soul obscurities – they’ve managed a second one. Welcome to Santa’s Funk & Soul Christmas Party Vol. 2 which features something seasonal in virtually every permutation of the funk soul template. Want some soaring gospel-soul? Check Rev. TL Barrett’s Jingle Bells featuring the Youth For Christ Choir. Squelchy wah-wah disco-funk? Short Stuff’s Merry Christmas Baby. Proto-funky rnb/ doo-wop soul? Nancy Lee’s Xmas Commercial Blues. Soul blues grooves? Bobby Allen & The Exceptions’ Lonely Christmas Tears. Rnb/ soul burner? Jimmy Jones & His Versatiles’ Christmas Is A Drag or the aforementioned Little Jimmy Thomas track. Motown soul? Tina Roberts Snow (Like Snow). Funky cha-cha? Pearl Bailey’s Jingle Bells Cha Cha. Orchestral soul? The Meditation Singers’ What The World Needs For Christmas. There’s also a different version of one of my favourite cuts off Vol. 1Black Christmas – this time a slow n low groove from Don Smith. Oh and just in case you thought there wasn’t a track with a title pun to equal Vol. 1’s Santa’s Got A New Bag – you’re wrong. They’ve bettered it. I refer of course to Martin Mull’s Curtis Mayfield-style blaxploitation cut…Santafly – he’s got something in his bag for you. Genius. Shit – you know what? I’m feeling quite Christmassy.
(Out now on Tramp Records)