Living with…Nat King Cole…for a week before Christmas

The word and sounds of Christmas Nat King Cole are both those of nostalgia and now.  They bring back the feelings of Christmases that maybe we did have, or at least if we didn’t we wish we did.  Tragically, his beautiful voice was also his downfall – its alleged that he smoked heavily in the belief that cigarettes added to the character of it.  He died of lung cancer aged 45.  Younger than me, and he is so part of our lives every year.

“Chestnuts roasting on an open fire,
Jack Frost nipping on your nose,
Yuletide carols being sung by a choir,
And folks dressed up like Eskimos. “

‘Ghost’ of Christmas Past: The clamour of an excited child.  Settling down on a cold Christmas Day around the warmth of a fire watching the Morecambe and Wise Christmas Special.  Eating Quality Street.  Baking specially shaped biscuits. Leaving Santa a glass of milk and biscuit.  Putting the stocking satsuma back in to the fruit bowl later.  Saving the wrapping paper for next year – don’t rip it too much.  Christmas compilation playing in the background.  Partly setting up a brand new toy where frustratingly Batteries Not Included.  Nan’s parsley stuffing.  Cracker jokes that make you laugh or groan.  Working through tottering heaps of washing up.  Finishing Christmas dinner in time for the Queen’s Speech.  Elderly relatives snoozing through the Queen’s Speech.  Keeping that paper hat on all afternoon.  Charades.  Setting the video for programmes that we’ll never watch.

“Thumpetty thump thump,
Thumpety thump thump,
Look at Frosty go.
Thumpetty thump thump,
Thumpety thump thump,
Over the hills of snow.”

‘Ghost’ of Christmas Present: the clamour of an excited child.  Santa now loves a glass of sherry on his flight, and a little something for the reindeer.  We WILL have a White Christmas this year.  Eating Quality Street.  It’ll be the Royle Family special and maybe an Agatha Christie…somehow the television doesn’t seem as magical.  Christmas compilation playing in the background.  Nan’s parsley stuffing.  Cracker jokes that make you laugh or groan.  Catching the Queen’s Speech on the news later.  We’ll catch up with the rest on iPlayer or maybe ITV2 or GOLD later in the year.  Baking specially shaped biscuits.  Batteries now included.  Remembering those relatives now gone as we raise our glasses.  Cheers.

 Christmas Future…still Nat (oh and Bing and Frank and Johnny and….).  See you all again next year.

“And so I’m offering this simple phrase, 
To kids from one to ninety-two, 
Although its been said many times, many ways, 
A very Merry Christmas to you “

Merry Christmas.

(You’ll need to follow a link through to Youtube due to restrictions on content and there may be an advert!  Definitely ‘ghost’ of Christmas present)

Note: I couldn’t find a definitive collection of Christmas songs from Nat King Cole from the 60s (the first one was released in 1960) so my listening revolved around the Christmas Songs compilation this year.