Christmas Song Nr. One: This Christmas by Beans on Toast & Skinny Lister
I first came in contact with Jay McAllister, the given name of the artist Beans on Toast, when he acted as the opening act for Frank Turner and I instantly fell in love with his brand of folkish music. Beans on Toast came on the folk scene in 2005 and has become quite the prolific song writer and has released an album every year on his birthday; December 1st. He mixes satirical, political and funny material on his albums, filled with social commentary in the vein of a true protest singer. In 2015 he and his label mates, the folk sextet, Skinny Lister released the charity single This Christmas and it is the first entrant on this Christmas List of Songs.
This Christmas is a folky romp of a song highlighting the joys of spending time with ones family on Christmas and forgetting troubles that may plague ones life, or relationships as it is in this tune. It sounds as if it was recorded on Christmas day, after the presents have been opened and the yuletide drinks have been well and truly consumed. There are sounds of joy in the company of family and friends amidst the harsh atmosphere outside, be it literal as in a winter evening or symbolic as in the state of the world.
Although it may not bring about the warm fuzzy feeling and picturesque images of a Bing Crosby special it conjures visions of a truer Christmas and it allows for something nostalgic. For some it may be the perfect description of celebrating the season with kith and kin.