Christmas with the Beatles!

Some great feedback on the latest episode of The Jacke Wilson Show is coming in. Many thanks to all my listeners! I’m so glad you’re enjoying it, and I hope to have another episode up soon. Until then, check out the Podcast page for the backlog.

Now for some true audio (and visual) pleasure. Christmas with the Beatles! We start with John and Yoko. You’ve heard this, of course. It’s everywhere. But if you’re in the mood, take a few minutes to watch the video, which has some excellent photos and truly warms the spirit:

Next up, Sir Paul, with another much-played song (but only one month a year, so let’s revel in it!). Here’s the 80s* synth-drenched version (with some killer haircuts for he and the other Wings):

[*NOTE: Just learned this was actually from 1979. Ahead of its time!]

I might have to run a post on Linda at some point. Totally underappreciated, which is a shame.

If synths aren’t your thing, here’s the updated a capella version, where Paul’s vocals are accompanied by the talented good folks at Straight No Chaser:

John or Paul, Paul or John? Which is better? Who wins? Well…

Why choose! Here they both are…with a little help from a couple of friends:

By the way, the hell is Ringo singing that for? I’m stumped. It’s like he was handed the wrong sheet music. But it’s still great. Maybe it’s even better because of that, who knows. My boys will get a bang out of it.

Happy Crimble everyone! Now go buy some gifts!

Small Press Shout-Out: OR Books!

A refuge for renegades, OR Books was founded by John Oakes and Colin Robinson (the O and the R), who together have published an impressive roster of authors in their careers, including Tariq Ali, Andrei Codrescu, Noam Chomsky, Alexander Cockburn, R. Crumb, Cory Doctorow, Andrea Dworkin, Eric Hobsbawm, Abbie Hoffman, Lewis Lapham, Gordon Lish, Rigoberta Menchú, Harvey Pekar, Matt Taibbi, John Waters, Jann Wenner, and Edmund White. They describe OR as “a new type of publishing company [that] embraces progressive change in politics, culture, and the way we do business.” They go into more detail about their past (and plans for the future) on their website.

Here’s what’s interesting: these longtime industry stalwarts (if “stalwarts” is the right word for two guys who always seem to have been on the cutting-edge side of what is sometimes a stodgy old business) believe that contemporary book publishing is in “crisis” and OR Books will do things differently.

Putting out just one or two books a month, OR makes the most of their opportunities. Who’s smart and nimble enough to bring out an anthology of Russian love Stories (Gay Propaganda) in time for the Sochi Olympics? OR Books!

This is the kind of small press that can bring out a book by Julian Assange, a graphic account of the trial of Chelsea Manning, a book of “exercises” and drawings by Yoko Ono, and a “passionate and persuasive case for the relevance of Ernest Hemingway to readers today.”

Eclectic? Check. Passionate? Check. Relevant and important and fascinating? Check check check.

Worth checking out their catalog? Check. And mate.

Previous Small Press Shoutouts: