Barenaked for the Holidays

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Barenaked for the Holidays
Barenaked Ladies - Barenaked for the Holidays.jpg
Studio album by
ReleasedOctober 5, 2004
RecordedMay 17–29, 2004 (Track 10 in August 1996)
GenreAlternative rock, holiday music, comedy
Length46:28
LabelDesperation
ProducerBarenaked Ladies
Barenaked Ladies chronology
Everything to Everyone
(2003)
Barenaked for the Holidays
(2004)
As You Like It
(2005)
Professional ratings
Review scores
SourceRating
Allmusic3/5 stars[1]
Encyclopedia of Popular Music2/5 stars[2]
Popmattersmixed to favorable[3]
Rolling Stonefavorable[4]
Sputnikmusic4/5 stars[5]

Barenaked for the Holidays is the first Christmas album released by Canadian band Barenaked Ladies on October 5, 2004. The album includes Christmas and Hanukkah songs as well as "Auld Lang Syne", which is traditionally sung on New Year's Eve. There are also several songs that are simply about the winter season. The album was the first album recorded at Steven Page's studio, Fresh Baked Woods and was the first released independently by Barenaked Ladies' Desperation Records label (and distributed by the Warner Music Group). It was the band's first studio album for which a "naked track" (recorded in the nude) was not recorded. This album achieved Gold status in Canada.[6]

Barenaked Ladies also collaborated with fellow Canadian artists Sarah McLachlan ("God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen") and a relatively unknown Michael Bublé ("Elf's Lament").

Production[edit]

While the album contains some faithful interpretations of traditional songs, much of the album plays true to Ladies' off-kilter spirit. "Jingle Bells" begins as a slow, faithful rendition before breaking into an up-tempo version, including the "Batman smells..." lyric variation, and Page breaking down laughing. Several existing songs are included in the form of keyboard interludes; "Happy Birthday to You" is included as a hidden track in the form "Happy Birthday Jesus". The song "Deck the Stills" is an adaptation or parody of the song "Deck the Halls" with the lyrics Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young repeated in place of the real lyrics (it was an in-joke with the band at the time to use these lyrics in other songs). The album also includes the Band Aid charity song, "Do They Know It's Christmas?", all the royalties from which the band donates to the Stephen Lewis Foundation. The collaboration with Sarah McLachlan for "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen" was released on a prior compilation, Christmas Songs, in 2000.[7] Finally, the album includes seven songs written by the band.

The album was a popular release during the Christmas season of 2004, and reached № 64 in the regular Billboard album charts. Barenaked Ladies promoted the album with the Barenaked for the Holidays Tour in 2004 and 2005.

Former member Steven Page later admitted that the album was not his idea, and that a holiday themed album was not what he wanted to do following Everything to Everyone.[8]

Releases[edit]

E.P. Version[edit]

An E.P. of Hanukkah-themed songs named the Barenaked for Hanukkah E.P. was released as a digital download on November 15, 2005. It contains a live version of "Hanukkah, O Hanukkah" from the band's Toronto concert on November 20, 2004, as well as the album versions of "Hanukkah Blessings" and "I Have a Little Dreidel". It was certified gold in Canada.[6]

Barenaked on a Stick[edit]

Barenaked on a Stick is a 128MB USB flash drive that contains the Holidays CD, live songs and ad libs, a demo recording, videos of the album recording, promo photos and buddy icons for instant messaging programs. It was sold initially at the 2005 holiday concert tour, and then through Nettwerk's online store, and though Amazon.com. The USB stick was part of a product test by the band to see if there was a market for releasing albums on reusable media. Their next album Barenaked Ladies Are Me was also released on USB flash drive, as were subsequent live recordings.

Rock Band[edit]

The song "Hanukkah Blessings" was released on the Rock Band music store on December 23, 2008.

Track listing[edit]

No.TitleWriter(s)Lead vocalsLength
1."Jingle Bells"traditionalSteven Page3:57
2."Green Christmas" (re-recorded; originally from the 2000 soundtrack for How the Grinch Stole Christmas)Steven Page, Ed RobertsonEd Robertson2:34
3."I Saw Three Ships"traditionalKevin Hearn, Page, Robertson1:07
4."Hanukkah Blessings"Steven PageSteven Page3:27
5."O Holy Night"Adolphe Adam 1:09
6."Elf's Lament"Ed RobertsonMichael Bublé, Page, Robertson3:34
7."Snowman"Ed RobertsonEd Robertson2:59
8."Do They Know It's Christmas?" (Previously released in a live version)Bob Geldof, Midge UrePage, Robertson, Tyler Stewart3:32
9."Hanukkah, Oh Hanukkah"traditionalPage, Robertson2:11
10."God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen"/"We Three Kings" (recorded backstage at WPLT Planefest, 1996)traditionalSarah McLachlan, Robertson3:26
11."Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer"Johnny Marks 0:59
12."Carol of the Bells"Mykola Leontovych, Peter Wilhousky 3:00
13."Footprints"Ed RobertsonEd Robertson3:14
14."Deck the Stills"traditionalJim Creeggan, Hearn, Page, Robertson, Stewart0:32
15."Christmastime (Oh Yeah)" (Re-recorded; originally with Page on vocals for a compilation album)Kevin HearnKevin Hearn2:16
16."Sleigh Ride"Leroy Anderson, Mitchell ParishCreeggan, Hearn, Page, Robertson0:46
17."Christmas Pics"Jim CreegganJim Creeggan2:13
18."I Have a Little Dreidel"Samuel E. Goldfarb, Samuel S. GrossmanPage, Robertson0:52
19."Wonderful Christmastime"Paul McCartney 0:48
20."Happy Birthday" (hidden track)Patty Hill, Mildred J. HillCreeggan, Hearn, Page, Robertson, Stewart0:30
21."Auld Lang Syne"traditionalPage, Robertson3:04

Personnel[edit]

Barenaked Ladies

Additional personnel

Production

  • Jeremy Darby – engineer
  • Michael Phillip Wojewoda – mixing
  • Ted Jensen – mastering
  • Don Garbutt – digital editing
  • Paul Forgues – assistant
  • Rob Menegoni – technical assistance
  • Keith Rudyk – technical assistance
  • Barenaked Ladies – arranger
  • Andrew MacNaughton – photography
  • John Rummen – artwork

References[edit]

  1. ^ Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. Barenaked for the Holidays at AllMusic. Retrieved 2011-09-02.
  2. ^ Larkin, Colin (2011). The Encyclopedia of Popular Music (5th concise ed.). Omnibus Press. ISBN 978-0-85712-595-8.
  3. ^ Damas, Jamas (December 8, 2004). "arenaked Ladies: Barenaked For the Holidays". Popmatters. Retrieved November 17, 2017.
  4. ^ Spencer, Todd (November 29, 2004). "Barenaked Ladies: Barenaked for the Holidays : Music Reviews". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on July 24, 2008. Retrieved April 2, 2012.
  5. ^ "Barenaked Ladies - Barenaked for the Holidays (staff review)". Sputnikmusic. Retrieved September 2, 2011.
  6. ^ a b "Gold and Platinum Search for Barenaked Ladies". Music Canada. Archived from the original on March 23, 2012. Retrieved July 9, 2011.
  7. ^ "Various Artists - Christmas Songs". Retrieved December 27, 2019.
  8. ^ McCoy, Heath (July 21, 2009). "Steven Page stripped bare". Ottawa Citizen. Archived from the original on July 25, 2009. Retrieved July 21, 2009.