Motown, snowtown, mistletoetown
Many warm memories of heady holidays and greatest gifts
Published: December 19, 2012
Shawn (Child Bite)
The year that my dad bought me a Sega Genesis. He said it was out in his car, and I was in such a rush that I slipped on the ice and slid halfway under the car. Of course I ended up playing Altered Beast for the next 48 hours or so straight. Rise from your grave.
Paula Messner (Candy Band)
One of my favorite recent memories is during our annual Christmas Party — I told all the guests that a surprise was coming — they thought I hired a stripper (yeah, the kids would have liked that). Well, they were shocked when about a dozen members of the Royal Oak High School Marching Band came into the basement to play Christmas songs (very loud). The dog sat in the middle of them and barked the whole time. It was hilarious. This year, I am hoping to get a good quality chef's knife or a new pillow under the tree.
T.Linder (Detroit Techno Militia)
The best gift that I ever got was when I was 11 years old. My parents got me the G.I. Joe "U.S.S. Flagg" play set. It was a 7-foot-long plastic replica of a Nimitz Class Aircraft Carrier. This year I am hoping that I get two vinyl copies of the out-of-print Piranha EP by Underground Resistance. It's the only record in the UR catalog that I don't have.
Drew Podgorski (IamDrew, Just Ask, Running With Panthers)
I don't remember how old, but I know I was dressed as a ninja in my pajamas. I snuck out and saw a Nintendo under the tree. It was "get in trouble" early, but this was a defining moment in my life. It was when I learned to say "fuck it," and I played some shitty Godzilla game till my eyes felt like they do now. Why is it parents always want to sleep in on Christmas? Fuckers. This year I hope to spread positivity around Detroit and put fun videos on the Internet!
One Christmas Eve, I was finishing up a tune at Roscoe's on the east side. I started the drive back to my Harper Woods family in my newly purchased used Pontiac when I was pulled over by the police for having tinted windows. I was asked if they could search my car. ... I said yes. A German shepherd was let loose where he hopped around a bunch on the backseat and the front before settling on the front passenger side. That was enough to implicate me under some type of suspicion. I was promptly joined by three more police cars and offered the option of confessing to something or being jailed for not confessing to something and locked up for the next three days until the judge came back from Christmas vacation. After a unique turn of events, I was released an hour later and free for a family Christmas morning wake up — instead of a jail cell Christmas morning wake up. I think that was the best Christmas present I never thought to list on Santa's To Do's. Thank you, Santa — you rule!
Robert Gillespie (Detroit Daggers, Powertrane, Torpedos)
[My best Christmas] would have to be Christmas 1965. The year started off really horrifying, as my mother passed away in May. I was so sad having to spend that Christmas without her, so my father tried to make it really special and he did. I was 11 years old and had been taking guitar lessons for almost a year. I'd seen the Beatles and Rolling Stones on Ed Sullivan like so many millions of others and knew what I wanted to do with my life. My dad got me a Gibson/Epiphone Casino guitar just like John Lennon used. That made me so very, very happy and helped take my mind off losing my mother in a way. This year for Christmas I'd love to get more work, more gigs for my band, the Detroit Daggers, finish our CD and release it, then take the Daggers on tour in Europe.
Frank Woodman (Woodman, Ungrateful Daughter)
I'm super-hyped to be playing music with my kids and a reunited Woodman this holiday season. It's the best gift I could get.
Jeremy Mackinder (Deadstring Brothers)
Greatest gift ever was probably coming down the stairs for a drink of water when I was 15 and there was my first bass, a Jazz Bass copy that my dad picked up at a pawnshop. My ma heard me get up, followed me down, told me plug it in, so I did. At 6:30 in the morning, my little brother heard it turn on and was down the stairs in about two seconds, finding the guitar they bought for him. Some of the most horrible sounds ever came out of those out-of-tune $25 instruments, and I think I blew the speaker on my little Gorilla amp in the first 15 minutes. For this year, it's the first time in eight years that my entire immediate family will be getting together in the same place. Based on our vastly different lifestyles and locations, it's probably not gonna happen again. If we get along, it'll be great.
Amanda Baily (Annabelle Road)
When I was 4, I spotted a beautiful Precious Moments ballerina on a family trip to see Santa. She was amazing! She twirled around on her toes while music played. I will never forget the sound of the music that played. I saw Santa a few minutes later and only told him that I wanted her. As we left the store, I looked to see the ballerina one more time. She was gone. Santa wouldn't be able to get her for me now! Christmas morning came, Santa didn't let me down. She was wrapped up, last gift under the tree. That's how I knew Santa was real.
The most distinctive memory is seeing the Santa at Oakland Mall en route to his throne scratching himself. Upon seeing me he mumbled, "Ho ho ho." This year, I'm looking forward to food, family and playing with the toys I got for my nieces and nephews. Playing with the kids is a blast.
Jeffrey Freer (Real Spicolis)
Best Christmas memory: Sega Genesis. What I want this year: Sega Genesis.
Brett Callwood writes City Slang for Metro Times. Send comments to email@example.com.
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