August 7, 2009
What To Do with A Caroling Jew
Bob Dylan is set to release an album of Christmas songs this holiday season.
As first reported on the website BullyPulpit.com, at least four songs have already been recorded for the album including, "Must Be Santa," "Here Comes Santa Claus," "I'll Be Home For Christmas" and "O Little Town of Bethlehem." Billboard has confirmed the existence of the album.
According to the report, sessions have occurred at Jackson Browne's Santa Monica, Calif. recording studio.
Dylan, who was born Robert Zimmerman, will join a music business tradition of Jewish artists who release Christmas-albums, including Neil Diamond, Barbra Streisand (who has released two Christmas albums, oy!), and Bette Midler (whose "Cool Yule" is now one of my all-time faves, btw). Irving Berlin, who wrote the yuletide classic "White Christmas," was also Jewish. Although he was born Jewish and seems to have returned to the faith, Dylan went through a "born again" Christian phase from 1979-1981, releasing several gospel-style albums including "Slow Train Coming" and "Saved." So, I guess there is some merit in that he probably has addressed the New Testament at some point in his career...but do we really want to hear Bob Dylan singing "Grandma Got Run Over By a Goyim"?
Dylan's most recent album, "Together Through Life," was released in April, entered the Billboard 200 at No. 1 and has sold more the 300,000 copies to date according to Nielsen SoundScan.