Uncle Rock’s 2009 collection of ten holiday songs Express Your Elf is one of a very few seasonal recordings to which my family eagerly returns every winter. The sound is basic, authentic, and affecting, and the original material is quite good. (Purchase it here or iTunes.) I asked Uncle Rock (Robert Burke Warren) about it.
1. What does a good Christmas song deliver?
A good Christmas song taps into the human need to connect in the darkest part of the year, and it helps that happen. Although there are some exceptions, Christmas songs that miss the mark, for me, err when they resort to cliche and mawkishness. It’s a fine line.
2. What made you want to make your own Christmas album?
I’d written several Christmas songs (and a Thanksgiving Song) and wanted to release those alongside songs from the (my) canon in an effort to give folks listening pleasure during a time of year when people who don’t ordinarily listen to music all the time tend to open up to music. I particularly like the shadowy side of Yuletide and wanted to go there more than most.
3. What are your favorite Christmas albums?