Bob Schneider offers a quiet, melancholy take on 'Fairytale of New York'

We explained the other day why “Fairytale of New York” is a Listen, Dammit, holiday favorite. So here’s another version, by Texas singer and songwriter Bob Schneider, formerly of the Scabs and Ugly Americans.

Schneider’s take is quieter and sadder. He plays it in trio form, with subdued piano chords, subtle bass and brushed drums, and he sings both the Shane MacGowan and Kirsty MacColl parts himself.

It’s from his new holiday album, “Christmastime” (available here), which Schneider recorded with Fastball’s Kevin Lovejoy on keys, Alejandro Escovedo on bass and JJ Johnson on drums.

“I’ve always found the holidays to be a melancholy time of the year for me,” he says in press notes for the album. “Lots of times with my parents in Germany and my sister in South America, I’d be alone, and I wanted to make a Christmas record that reflected this sort of mood. I also wanted to make a record that was very intimate and not bombastic or merry in any way, in the same way that ‘A Charlie Brown Christmas’ is, which is one of my favorite records of any kind. With the help of some of the finest musicians living today, I was able to capture some of that feeling.”

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Fairytale of New York mp3

(Photo by Darla Teagarden)

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