The Love House Christmas Extravaganza: A Musical Holiday Tradition

By Edward M. Bury, APR (aka The PRDude)

Holiday traditions, are as old as, well the holidays themselves. And, you guessed it: There’s even a website — World Holiday Traditions — that provides insight into how cultures celebrate at Christmastime.

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Which one is me? The good-looking one. A tradition is to enlist an audience member to add the sleight bells to Christmas songs.

Like many around the world, I have fond memories of our family gathered together in our home on Walton Street in Chicago for the Polish Christmas Eve traditional dinner, called wigilia. It’s a meatless meal of Old World foods, all served family style, and includes passing a wafer called oplatek while offering everyone good wishes for the year.

(Full disclosure: My brothers and I complained about the somewhat bland dishes, and I believe we got pizza added to the menu, bringing an Italian-inspired tradition to our wigilia meal.)

For the past 20-plus years or so, I’ve partaken in another holiday tradition of sorts with my other “family” — namely (in alphabetical order) Bill, Doug, Phil and Roy.  Yes, they have last names, but I’ll keep them confidential for now.  These guys are my musical compatriots in a rock and roll cover band called Love House.

What a way to usher in the Christmas holiday! Rocking out with Love House.

What a way to usher in the Christmas holiday! Rocking out with Love House.

Our tradition: Securing a gig at whatever bar will have us, inviting family and friends, and spreading the spirit of the season with Christmas songs new and old, along with other selections you’ve probably heard before. View a video to get an idea of what it was like during the 2016 show December 10 at Chalk in Forest Park, IL.

This tradition — and much of the set list — hasn’t changed much over the years, but we really enjoy making music and people still make the trek out during a cold month and help us spread holiday cheer. And, to make the event more communal, we invite a member of the audience to ring sleigh bells during “Santa Claus is Coming to Town,” “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree,” “Run, Run Rudolph” and other holiday musical chestnuts, although we have none roasting on an open fire.

Yes, we make a small amount of money; I spent mine buying guests a beer. A small token of thanks for letting Love House play a small role in shaping memories of this time of year for those close to us — and anyone who wandered in.

How long will the Love House Christmas Extravaganza (I made up the name, by the way, to improve SEO; we just call it “the Christmas gig”) last?

Ho, ho, ho, I don’t know. Just keep a date open next December, and plan on taking in the show.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I Revel Alone, Now That Christmas Has Come*

By Edward M. Bury, APR (aka The PRDude)

Why the asterisk in the title?

Well, it’s also the name of the song below, an original I wrote a few years ago.  It was recorded this evening using my Dell laptop, so the quality is not the best.

But the message is original, and I hope you enjoy this composition, my Christmas gift to you.

I REVEL ALONE (NOW THAT CHRISTMAS HAS COME)

I revel alone
Now that Christmas has come
Me and the cats
Wait for her to come home

 

Lights on the tree
Sparkle only for me
Snow on the ground
My singular Christmas scene

 

Refrain:

Hours leading
To Christmas Day

Moments treasured
As time is swept away

 

Thoughts from the past
Pass like sand in a glass
I take stock of life
And wonder what else to ask

 

She opens the door
I hear footsteps on the floor
The cats are awake
No time to reflect anymore

 

I revel alone
Now that Christmas has come
I revel alone

 

 

Copyright 2014 Edward M. Bury