Don't believe in Christmas

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Of the thousand ripoffs, variations and versions of Chuck Berry's 1956 hit "Too Much Monkey Business," "Don't Believe in Christmas" by Tacoma, WA's pride and joy, the Sonics, is one of them. I personally have a soft spot for throwaway/ novelty songs by great bands. The idea partly is that you can learn more about a songwriter's process by studying their lesser and unpolished work, but also that a not-stellar song by them will best most others' finest attempts. But then I'm kind of a geek and I was buying bootleg records by the time I was fifteen years old, eager to hear every everything by acts I adored.

I first heard this song by these proto-punk garage rockers as one of the extra tracks on the Brooklyn-based label Norton's excellent 1999 reissue of the Sonics' 1965 debut Here Are the Sonics. It has made its way onto many a Christmas mix since then, and is extra notable for being a snotty song about the holiday time.

About The Author

Mike McGonigal

Metro Times music editor Mike McGonigal has written about music since 1984, when he started the fanzine Chemical Imbalance at age sixteen with money saved from mowing lawns in Florida. He's since written for Spin, Pitchfork, the Village VOICE and Artforum. He's been a museum guard, a financial reporter, a bicycle...
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