Top Ten Gifts For a Very Punk Rock X-Mas

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Impact's 7'' single from 1982 is #11.
As far as holiday shopping goes, punks can be hard to please.

But don't fret, we are experts when it comes to the Christmas lists of this hydraheaded rock 'n' roll youth culture and its myriad subdivisions.

After the cut, we've got gift suggestions for everyone from crusty train-hoppers to straight-edge kids and dumpster-diving freegan bike punks.

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Jewish Christmas Carols: Seven Christmas Songs Written by Jews

Categories: Holiday Obscura
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Christmas can be a lonely time for Jews. Sure we've got Chanukah, but spinning a top and eating root vegetables pancakes doesn't really make you feel a part of things, especially when everyone else is decorating trees with candy and waiting for a bearded man to cheerfully deliver their greatest material desires. 

But there is one Christmas pastime that Jews have been a major part of, writing and singing Christmas carols. Whether this pattern is out of a need to assimilate, to find a wider audience than Chanukah tunes would ever get, or to pay homage to a fellow Jew's birthday, here's a list of  some of the most beloved Christmas songs not written by Christians. 



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Jacob Jeffries' Christmas Wish List and South Florida Tour Dates

Categories: Holiday Obscura
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This is that cover. 
We featured the Jacob Jeffries Band on the cover of New Times Broward Palm Beach earlier this year. They were all cute, looking like Queen. Remember? 

Well, our hometown boy and his band are planning a few post-Christmas in-town shows this holiday season. We're thinking their fun folk-pop sound will be the perfect antidote for your family- and booze-induced hangover. 

This'll also give you just the right opportunity to present the singer/songwriter with gifts off of his holiday wish list, which he shared with us here. Make sure to be generous, we want this guy to keep singing and songwriting. 

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Top Ten Worst Holiday Songs

Categories: Holiday Obscura
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Rudolph with his nose so bright: Reason enough to protest the exploitation of animals
There are certain traditions that seem to haunt us every holiday season, annual rituals from which we can't seem to escape. The cry of "ho ho ho" rings from every street corner (and no, we're not referring to local pimps beckoning their ho ho hos) and on every block, houses are lit up with a glow that far surpasses Uncle Fred's complexion after one too many shots of Scotch and tequila at the office Christmas party.
 

The sounds of the season - those so-called holiday classics - are often capable of driving us to drink, so much so that we could out-chug drunken revelers like Uncle Fred himself.

With that in mind, we offer ten top holiday songs that stink worse than frankincense and myrrh.

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Top 10 Workout Songs for Burning Holiday Calories

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Olivia Newton John is gonna help you work off that third helping of Thanksgiving stuffing. 
This holiday season, we ate it all: The turkey, ham, mashed potatoes, sweet potato mash, cornbread casserole, sausage and peas, stuffing, brussel sprouts, and itsy bitsy little dinner rolls toasted and smeared with lotsa butter. 

We scarfed every gingerbread cookie in sight and compulsively sucked on candy canes. 

We excused ourselves from Midnight Mass to chug egg nog and pass out in an alley behind the church. 

And we plan to spend New Year's Eve looking at our space phone in a Chinese buffet. 

What we're getting at is that once 2013 is here and life goes back to the peak of droll mundanity, it's gonna be time to put down the pie and pick up the dumbbell. Here are the 10 best songs to help burn some of those seasonal extra calories. 
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Five Floridians We'd Like to See Perform in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade

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Chongalicious float, anyone? 

Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade is an instantly recognizable train wreck, heralding the coming end of year festivities. As usual, we do not like to single out religious celebrations in lieu of having to list them all and possibly offend those we might accidentally leave out, so we'll err on the side of Seinfeld and assume Festivus really is for all of us.

Regardless of which, the parade proper is fun for the family and features iconic and beloved characters in a helium-inflated format, because nothing says "good time" like balloons and floats filled with artists lip-synching their amazing hits! 

This year's Parade features artists we dig like Flo Rida and Chris Isaak (who are certainly great pals in real life) as well as Jimmy Fallon and the Roots (we had no idea he pulled a Diana Ross on them cats), the Wanted, Karmin, Neon Trees, and Carly Rae Jepsen, among many others.

We, of course, would prefer to see a heavier Floridian representation within the proceedings, and thus offer the following stand-in choices. 


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Have Yourself a Merry Little Punk Rock Christmas!

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Ah! The Holidays are upon us, again, and nothing makes me feel more at ease during this hectic season than cheery songs full of goodwill messages and warm, huggy feelings! It's true! Nothing makes the Holidays better than traditional songs sung around the fire in the company of family and good friends. While there might be some great holiday tracks you can take to the streets in the finest of your Victorian dress, my family prefers some less traditional fare with modern twists. You can rest assured we'll be singing these come Noche Buena over the crackling skin of pork in the Caja China! So from my family to yours, have yourselves a merry little punk rock Christmas!

Nothing says family better than this little ditty by my favorite all-Jewish rock and roll ensemble, The Ramones!

The Ramones - "Merry Christmas (I Don't Want to Fight Tonight)


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Your Holiday Guide to Santa Claus, Jerry Garcia-Claus, and Other Magic

Categories: Holiday Obscura
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Grateful Dead
As real as you

​​As of yet, there has been no verified reincarnation of Jerry Garcia on this planet. That means that he may very well still be swirling free in the cosmos, perfectly able to work magic wherever and whenever he pleases. He was pretty much the psychedelic Santa while embodied, and now we're thinking he is only more-so without the physical constraints of humanness. Indeed, the more we think about it, stoned, the more likely it seems that Jerry and Santa are looking into each other's twinkling eyes at this very moment, imagining the gifts they will bestow upon us this holiday season.

For those of you who are not blinded by the assertions of low-vibration individuals who claim that Jerry, Santa, and magic are all fictitious, and who may be curious as to what sorts other-dimensional characters you may be in the presence of this holiday season, County Grind would like to offer a brief list of indicators and pointers to help you identify some of the mysterious phenomenon you may observe, and respond appropriately. Having this guide in your shirt pocket makes you the equivalent of a psychedelic bird watcher. Though, you'll have to come up with your own 5D binoculars.

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Scott Stapp Sings "White Christmas" at Delray Beach Christmas-Tree Lighting

Categories: Holiday Obscura
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The Stapp Family's 2010 Christmas card.
The City of Delray Beach's holiday festivities had a surprising postgrunge potency Thursday evening as Creed lead singer took the stage to sing Irving Berlin's "White Christmas." Popularized by Bing Crosby, the 70-year-old song has been past through the hands of countless musicians since, including Elvis Presley, the Supremes, Bob Marley, the New Kids on the Block, and Lady Gaga.

"I wanted to come rock with you guys," Stapp, dressed in a jacket and cap, said in a brief introduction. Although the picture quality of the video isn't great, it's clear right away whom we're dealing with.

Backed only by an acoustic guitar, he put his own stamp on the holiday classic immediately. Whereas some of the artists in the past have chosen melisma-rich swoops on the "I'm" beginning each stanza, the singer sped up the tune a bit and delivered his notes with some punch closer to Bruce Springsteen's take on "Santa Claus Is Coming to Town." 

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Ten Best Holiday Songs You Won't Hear in Starbucks

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Beck wants robots to celebrate the holidays too.
So it's that time of year again; tacky decorations abound, people in malls start to get that panicked look in their eyes, and every grocery store, gas station, and Starbucks blasts the same, tired old holiday songs (which is the most likely culprit for the season's elevated suicide rates). Because we love you, we compiled a list of the best alternative holiday songs. Some are thoughtful and eloquent, some are lovably tacky, but all were chosen because they embody the true spirit of the holidays. Pour yourself a Santa-sized glass of eggnog (that means... don't skimp on the bourbon!) and cuddle up close to your Yuletide computer screen; this is our holiday gift to you.


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