We are smack dab in the middle of the holiday season. Christmas is only 9 days away, and oh I am feeling festive. Very festive. In fact, as of the very moment I am typing this, I am in my living room wearing Christmas-themed pajamas while enjoying the multi-colored lights from my Christmas tree as sappy holiday movies I am only somewhat paying attention to play in the background.
When I am not binging on holiday movies so sweet they could give Scrooge a toothache, I have been listening to Christmas music. Obviously, there is no better time to share one of my favorite Christmas albums with you than right now when so many of us are in the Christmas spirit.
Bright Eyes is, and has always been, an exercise in extraordinary fandom for me. The moniker in which Nebraskan singer/songwriter Conor Oberst used as a vehicle for over a decade’s worth of songs, Bright Eyes began as a solo act that grew to include a rotating lineup of multi-instrumentalists and even full orchestras.
Bright Eyes is an exploration in gritty folk, indie rock, and even electronica at times. Oberst’s music has always been written with a biting, harsh, aching honesty that instantly hooked me and never — not even once — let me go.
From the very first time I heard Bright Eyes, back when I was in the 9th grade, I knew I had discovered something truly special that could only come from someone who lives and breathes passion for what they are doing, and who possesses heaps of talent to take it all the way. And I was right.
The fact that Bright Eyes released A Christmas Album delights me to absolutely no end. The album was released in 2002 and I have listened to it throughout many holiday seasons. Unfortunately, it is a disappointingly short album at just over 30 minutes. However, it is beautiful and worthy of several listens.
It is always interesting to see how musicians will interpret or cover a song that is not theirs, and when they are classic Christmas songs and your favorite singer/songwriter, it is all the more interesting, and very special.