The music for this track was recorded at Simmons Nurseries in August 2009. The recording equipment was operated by the talented Mr Phil Davies. Andy bought mince pies and party poppers to get everyone in the mood. Laura's mother also cooked a roast dinner, which didn't hurt.
Laura played her upright piano. Andy played woodwind, keyboard, and electronic dog. Wesley did all the percussion including his big kettle drums which frankly we'd been looking for an excuse to use for some time.
The fake party noises at the end of the track consist of Laura, Andy and Phil stood around a pool table clinking glasses together, half-heartedly whoo-hooing, and letting off party poppers. This audio was then made into a loop, and layered several times with different starting point to create the convincing jovial festive atmosphere you, dear listener, can enjoy at your lesiure.
Laura recording the vocals in the kitchen at Phil's farmhouse near Darlington a short while after the rest of the recording took place.
'Someone To Pull Crackers With' received its first national airplay courtesy of Huw Stephens on Radio 1 on Wednesday 16th December 2009.
This is the original press release...
"When the idea of releasing a charity Christmas single was originally conceived, Das Wanderlust’s plan was to write an irony-free Christmas pop song in the vein of the classic tunes everybody knows and loves from their childhoods (Phil Spector, Slade, Wizzard, Elton John, Wham, etc.) A straight-ahead, three minute festive blast.
Which is why Laura, Andrew and Wesley were left puzzled by how exactly they ended up with a five-and-a-half minute mini-epic - over twice as long as the average Das Wanderlust song - that sounds like it could have come from an aborted
Andrew Lloyd Webber musical. Equally strange is that the song contains a key-change halfway through which somehow magically transports the song back to the key in which it originally started. Is that even possible?
Still, crossover pop hit it may not be, but it certainly sounds pretty damn Christmassy. The band were careful to tick all the traditional yuletide boxes - peal-of-bell refrains, lyrical touchstones (the tree, the presents, the glowing fire, the snow), more bells, 3/4 time signatures, yet more bells, choirs and - most importantly - fake party noises. And not a distorted guitar in sight. It might not have been where they were aiming, but it came out nicely nevertheless, and they were proud of managing to create a genuinely
rich sound without using any additional musicians. Laura worked out a lavish vocal arrangement, Andy learned how to play the clarinet especially, and Wesley dusted off his old kettle drums.
'Someone To Pull Crackers With' is available as a free download exclusively from D A S * W A N D E R L U S T, with an option to donate money to The Brooke Animal Hospital - a charity helping people in the world's poorest countries care for the working donkeys, horses and mules which they depend on so heavily for their quality of life. The song is also available as a track on Cherryade Records 'A Very Cherry Christmas Vol. 5', available in all good record stores now. "
December last year I had no presents to buy
The snow didn't fall and I wanted to die
I got so drunk on Christmas Day
In bed by ten, all on my own.
And as I slept I had a dream
That next year I might have
Someone to pull crackers with
Sing carols to
Cook dinner for
Swap presents sitting on the floor
The fire glow, next year I know.
What if I don't meet someone?
(You won't do if you keep thinking like that!)
Just who are you anyway?
(I'm the voice that lives in your head!)
Oh no, now I'm hearing people who aren't really there
So I pull on my boots and go out for a breath of fresh air.
Walking in the park I felt two paws on my back
Fell down in the mud, and when I looked up
I saw the most handsome dog I'd ever seen (woof woof!)
Then I saw his owner - you know what they say about dogs and their owners!
We spent the spring in bluebell woods
Summer passed by without any fuss
The leaves turned brown
The nights drew in
Fireworks lit up the sky.
And once again its Christmas time
We both don't like glühwein but
That paper hat looks good on you
We hang the lights upon the tree
The tinsel and the baubles too
Now we've seen the whole year through!
[FAKE PARTY NOISES TO FADE OUT]
released December 1, 2009
Vocals and piano by Laura Simmons
Clarinet, sax, keyboard and electronic dog noise by Andy Elliott
Percussion by Wesley John Stephenson
Fake party noises by Laura, Andy & Phil (Wes you big party pooper!)
Recorded by Phil Davies
Produced by Phil Davies & Das Wanderlust
Mastered at Abbey Road
all rights reserved