’Tis the season to be jolly. ’Tis also the season to make outrageous demands of our friends and family in the name of holiday spirit and Christmas loot. What follows are the seasonal hopes, wishes and outright pleas of some of Seven Days’ extended family and friends, the fine folks who make up Vermont’s local music scene.
James Huessy, standup comedian turned-AmeriCorps volunteer
I wouldn’t mind seeing hordes of college acceptance letters and/or the new Cunninglynguists album. The Aztext are rumored to have a new album in the works. That would be nice, too.
More punk-rock bands to play Higher Ground. A revival of the ska genre that doesn’t include hundreds of knockoff ska-punk bands (more Husbands AKA and less Reel Big Fish). Local bands sending their punk/ska/hardcore stuff to WRUV. To have a pint of beer with Sen. Bernie Sanders, Sen. Patrick Leahy and Rusty “The Logger” DeWees at The Three Needs.
A jaw harp from every region of the world. For Col. Bruce Hampton to play in Vermont once per year. That Willie Nelson and my mom would admit I’m one of Willie’s “love children.”
Colin McCaffrey, musician and recording engineer
Here’s to a great monitor mix with no feedback, a guitar that stays miraculously in tune for a whole set, fans who actually buy a CD after saying how much they love your music, a mix that a client likes more than the first rough you sent them a year ago, and a brand-new ribbon mic in every stocking!
Rachael Rice, vocalist, sweetheart of the alt-country rodeo
I would like a female pedal steel player. Is that so much to ask? I’ve never seen one in my entire life. It would be like seeing a unicorn.
Dear Santa: After you make Unrestrained invisible to the Russian mob, would you make a big rainbow and some unicorns for our landlords? If your bag can fit in an elevator and some fire marshals who like to mosh, we’d be glad, too. But just knowing you’re making people happy everywhere makes it all OK.
No more one-hit-wonder ’90s alt-rock bands trying to make a comeback. Make it stop, Santa! Fire the record exec who thought Bob Dylan’s Christmas song album would be a good idea. A pair of tickets to U2 next summer in Montréal. A Burlington gay bar — for real.
The end of the confusion between hype and talent. They are not interchangeable. Hype does not equal talent and vice versa. Failing that, I’d like someone to hype the crap outta me. Seriously, I love to poop. I’d like to meet a guy who is the antithesis of every dude I’ve dated in the past two years.
I wish that Joey Ramone, Elvis, Joe Strummer and Buddy Holly could be raised and play one concert — with their bands, of course — for me and my little girl Grace in our backyard.
Sasha Rodriguez, drummer, The Fatal Flaws
My rock ’n’ roll X-mas wish would be to eliminate the bureaucratic hurdles involved in getting bands across international borders.
Danny C, vocalist, The Starline Rhythm Boys
More stacks of wax! There’s nothin’ like sittin’ there in an easy chair drinkin’ a cold one with a platter turnin’ on a table!
It’s always better to give than receive. So we’d like to give everyone in the world a bottle of whiskey and a copy of the Blondes’ CD, Sex the Elastic. And we really wish that we would finish the damn thing before Christmas.
Will Patton, mandolinist
Here’s my fervent wish for the new year: high-speed rail service between cities for touring musicians. We’d arrive right downtown, all fresh, full of ideas and smelling much better.
Jeremy Ayers, host, WRUV’s “Exposure”
Bands I’d like to see in Vermont this year: Pavement, Love as Laughter, The XX, Spoon, The Mountain Goats, Two Gallants, Wolfmother, Pavement, Bat for Lashes, Black Mountain/Pink Mountaintops, The Black Keys, Dirty Projectors, Little Joy, Vetiver, Miles Benjamin Anthony Robinson and … Pavement!
Mike Luoma, author, erstwhile radio personality
I’d love to find a cool new radio gig sitting under my tree. And I hope the new year brings more people reading, listening to and enjoying my books!
Myra Flynn, vocalist
12 drummers drumming, 11 horn players playing, 10 backup dancers, 9 new bars to play in, 8 Korgs and cables, 7 bookers booking, 6 music writers writing, 5 times the money! 4 catcalling guys, 3 drunk girls, 2 “Free Bird” requests, and a break on Christmas for me!