‘The St Stephens Day Murders’

Pretty self-explanatory

‘The St Stephens Day Murders’

Postby johnfoyle » Fri Dec 26, 2003 4:58 am

Elvis`only Christmas song , of sorts , is about the day after after Christmas , Dec. 26th. That day is generally known as St Stephens Day in Ireland (deriving from when religious matters defined aspects of Irish life ) . Elvis wrote and recorded the song for a Chieftains album , The Bells of Dublin , in 1991. It , perhaps , received a more general audience when it was included as an extra with 2002 Rhino re-issue of Mighty Like A Rose.

The lyric is a perfect portrayal of family life in the aftermath of Christmas. After the joy of the day , tensions reappear. Remembering , perhaps , extended family gatherings in his Anglo-Irish Liverpool/London childhood he includes references that are not strictly true to an Irish childhood . `That drink made from girders` -Irn Bru - still is not widely available in Ireland. `Tia Marias` would more likely be replaced by Jameson or Paddys.

Whatever - it is still a very funny song. My strongest memory of the song dates from 1995 . That summer I saw him perform it at the Cambridge Folk Festival. Performing solo he introduced it as a `cooling song`, to help the audience deal with suffocating heat at a partly covered out door show.

Here`s the lyric - and some notes on the references.

St. Stephen's Day Murders (Costello/Moloney)
========================

I knew of two sisters whose name it was Christmas
And one was named Dawn, of course the other one was
named Eve
I wonder if they grew up hating the season
The good will that lasts till the Feast of St. Stephen

For that is the time to eat, drink and be merry
Till the beer is all spilled and the whiskey has
flowed
And the whole family tree you neglected to bury
Are feeding their faces until they explode

Chorus:
There'll be laughter and tears over Tia Marias
Mixed up with that drink made from girders
Cause it's all we`ve got left as they draw their
last breath
Ah, it's nice for the kids as you finally get rid of
them
In the St. Stephen's Day Murders

Uncle is gargling a heart-breaking air
While the baby in his arms pulls all that remains of
his hair
And we're not drunk enough to dare criticise
The great kipper tie he's about to baptise

With his gin flavoured whispers and kisses of sherry
His best crimble shirt's slung out over the shop
But the lights from the Christmas tree blew up the
telly
His face closes in like an old cold pork chop

And the carcass of the the beast left over from the
feast
May still be found haunting the kitchen
And there's life in it yet, we may live to regret
When the ones that we poisoned stop twitchin`

-chorus-

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Irn_Bru

Irn Bru
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Irn Bru is the most popular caffeinated soft drink in
Scotland. It is available throughout Britain, Russia
and Canada. Its advertising slogan used to be "Made in
Scotland from Girders",
although the closest one can
come to substantiating this claim is the 0.02% ferric
citrate listed in the ingredients (although this could
also be seen as a pun on the name of the manufacturer:
Barr). In Scotland, it is even more popular than
Coca-Cola.

The drink was first produced in 1901 under the name
Iron Brew. Other soft drink manufacturers in Scotland,
such as Hays or Sangs, produce their own versions of
Iron Brew and keep the original spelling, but only
Barr, the major vendor, changed to the phonetic
spelling in 1946 ostensibly to circumvent government
regulations on product naming.

When half-flat, cold, and combined with the previous
night's haggis dinner, it is widely reputed to be an
excellent cure for hangovers.

Rather surprisingly, it also makes an excellent mixer
with vodka, which explains why it sells more in Russia
than Scotland (although this information may be out of
date).

When McDonald's restaurants first opened for business
in Glasgow they did not serve Irn Bru. This was an
insult to the Scots who, as a result, picketed many
restaurants until the McDonald's Corporation relented.


The manufacturer is A.G. Barr, plc, United Kingdom
-------------------------------------------------------

http://www.bevnet.com/reviews/irn-bru/index.asp

Irn-Bru
Category: Gourmet Soda; Packaging: can, glass


Irn-Bru is a very popular European beverage that
features a very mild citrus/orange flavor. In addition
to having a citrus flavor, this beverage has a mild
caffeine flavor. While many US consumers might not
understand this product, Irn-Bru maintains a cult like
status in the UK (especially in Scotland). Overall, a
great beverage.

NUTRITION FACTS & INGREDIENTS

Ingredients: water, sugar, carbon dioxide, citric
acid, flavorings, preservatives
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

http://www.barnonedrinks.com/tips/dictionary/t.html
Tia Maria

A rum-based coffee liqueur produced in Jamaica. 26.5
per cent alcohol by volume.



http://www.allieddomecq.com/brands/bran ... p?Page=108



Tia Maria

One of the world's most successful premium
international liqueurs, Tia Maria offers consumers an
intriguing, alluring and daring experience. Tia Maria
is a premium, medium strength liqueur delicately
flavoured with an intriguing blend of cane spirit, the
finest Jamaican coffee, vanilla and sugar. A versatile
liqueur which is delicious whether consumed straight,
over ice, or mixed. Tia Maria is the UK's leading
coffee liqueur.
Last edited by johnfoyle on Sun Dec 26, 2010 5:54 am, edited 2 times in total.
johnfoyle
 
Posts: 11207
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:37 pm
Location: Dublin , Ireland

Postby laughingcrow » Fri Dec 26, 2003 10:01 am

Cannae beat a drap o' Irn Bru Johnny boy! Made fae girders....and I live fifteen minutes away from the factory they make (should that be smelt?) it.

Here and Russia are the only place where it beats Cola nut flavourings to the number one spot on that fames podium of fizzy pop!

Now I'm off to have my haggis, neeps an tatties wi a bit o' deep fried christmas pudding!
One beat, two beat, three beat, sugar beat. Four beat, five beat, six beat, wheat-a-beat. Seven beat, eight beat, nine beat, heartbeat. My heartbeat, my heart is beating for you.
User avatar
laughingcrow
 
Posts: 2476
Joined: Tue Jul 29, 2003 8:35 am
Location: Glasgow, the Scottish Congo

Re: Elvis``day-after-Christmas` song

Postby miss buenos aires » Fri Dec 26, 2003 2:20 pm

johnfoyle wrote:Elvis`only Christmas song , of sorts , is about the day after after Christmas , Dec. 26th.


"Boxing Day" doesn't count?
User avatar
miss buenos aires
 
Posts: 2055
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 7:15 am
Location: jcnj

Postby LessThanZero » Fri Dec 26, 2003 3:37 pm

Why is he so hung up on the 26th??
Loving this board since before When I Was Cruel.
User avatar
LessThanZero
 
Posts: 1117
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 10:26 pm
Location: Kalamazoo

Postby sulkygirl » Fri Dec 26, 2003 5:58 pm

LessThanZero wrote:Why is he so hung up on the 26th??


Post-Holiday Blues, perhaps??
"Love can be stranger than fiction..."
User avatar
sulkygirl
 
Posts: 531
Joined: Thu Jun 05, 2003 2:22 pm
Location: The Absolute Armpit of the USA--Yakima, Washington (***cough***)

The perfect stocking stuffer

Postby LessThanZero » Fri Dec 26, 2003 6:06 pm

"5 free days at the beauty spa...thank you...honey...."
Loving this board since before When I Was Cruel.
User avatar
LessThanZero
 
Posts: 1117
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 10:26 pm
Location: Kalamazoo

Postby double dutchess » Fri Jan 16, 2004 1:01 am

I can't believe I'm posting on this thread, especially considering it's been dead for weeks. But when I read about the Irn-Bru, I had to share. I remember one of their commercials from the 80s, specifically 1986, because thats when my family moved to England. This guy was walking his girlfriend home one night and she dropped her keys. He took a drink of his Bru, and bent a streetlamp downward so she could see the sidewalk. My sister and I were so amused that we begged our mom to buy us some. She did, and I don't remember if we liked it or not. But, for some reason, I remember that commercial nearly 20 years later.

When I think about it, it's kind of sad. No, pathetic. But funny. :lol:
I wasn't born the sharpest thorn
User avatar
double dutchess
 
Posts: 146
Joined: Tue Jun 03, 2003 11:01 am
Location: New York

Postby martinfoyle » Sat Dec 25, 2004 6:39 pm

Time to give this thread a seasonal bump.
martinfoyle
 
Posts: 2482
Joined: Tue Jun 03, 2003 5:24 pm
Location: Dublin, Ireland

Postby johnfoyle » Sun Dec 25, 2005 7:13 pm

...........and again!
johnfoyle
 
Posts: 11207
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:37 pm
Location: Dublin , Ireland

Postby johnfoyle » Tue Dec 26, 2006 5:53 pm

Just in time for a seasonal ' bump' for this!

I'm just in from a gathering that this song could easily be the soudtrack for............

When it was included in the MLAR re-issue Elvis noted

http://www.elviscostellofans.com/phpBB2 ... php?t=3476

One is an antidote to mawkish Christmas song called St. Stephen's Day Murders. The text, written for Paddy Maloney's air, imagines lacing the festive bird with something to dispatch unwanted and unwelcome relations. It was originally released on The Chieftain seasonal album The Bells Of Dublin.
johnfoyle
 
Posts: 11207
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:37 pm
Location: Dublin , Ireland

Re: Elvis``day-after-Christmas` song

Postby johnfoyle » Wed Dec 26, 2007 9:11 am

Yet another seasonal bump........
johnfoyle
 
Posts: 11207
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:37 pm
Location: Dublin , Ireland

Re: Elvis``day-after-Christmas` song

Postby johnfoyle » Tue Oct 27, 2009 1:49 pm

http://hangout.altsounds.com/news/11223 ... album.html

Thea Gilmore set to release Christmas album

October 27, 2009

British singer-songwriter Thea Gilmore will be releasing her new album, ‘Strange Communion’ on 23rd November 2009, ahead of her UK tour throughout November and December. ‘Strange Communion’ is a Christmas album which references the poetry of T. S. Eliot and Louis MacNiece, and includes cover versions of obscure songs by Elvis Costello and Yoko Ono. The album will precede the single, That’ll Be Christmas, released 7th December.

The Oxford-born singer-songwriter has been making intensely personal, socially aware music to considerable praise since she was a teenager, and has racked up sales, acclaim and admiration from peers such as Bruce Springsteen, Joan Baez and Martha Wainwright, to name but a few. The Independent regards Thea as "the best wordsmith of her generation", and Uncut labeled her "the best British singer/songwriter of the last ten years - and then some."

‘Strange Communion’ is a stirring, emotive journey, by turns joyful, celebratory and sceptical; it delves into the heart of the festive season and reflects on its institutions and contradictions. Gilmore finds lyrical inspiration in ancient folklore as much as she does in popular culture, and the album is interspersed with references to the likes of The Sound of Music in ‘That’ll be Christmas’, to poetry from Louis MacNeice’s Autumn Journal, in ‘Book Of Christmas’ and from T.S Eliot’s iconic poem about the nativity, Journey Of The Magi, in ‘Cold Coming’.

Whilst opening track ‘Sol Invictus’, is an invocation to a pagan sun god, and a collaboration with the award-winning Sense Of Sound Choir, ‘The St Stephens Day Murders’ is a cover of an Elvis Costello track, and surely the most unlikely duet of the year with Radio 2's Mark Radcliffe. Another remarkable cover is ‘Listen, the Snow is Falling’; originally a Yoko Ono song which first appeared as a B-Side on a John Lennon single.

Tying the album together is Thea's crystalline voice and famously dazzling lyrics. ‘Strange Communion’ is not an average snow-and-sleigh-bells offering; it treads ground that so many other seasonal albums don't, and is set to be the soundtrack to many people’s festive season.

‘Strange Communion’ tracklisting:

1) Sol Invictus
2) Thea Gilmore’s Midwinter Toast
3) Cold Coming
4) That’ll Be Christmas
5) Listen, The Snow is Falling
6) Drunken Angel
7) The St Stephens Day Murder
8) December in New York
9) Book of Christmas
10) Old December

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Strange-Communi ... 361&sr=8-1

http://www.theagilmore.net/fr_news.cfm

http://www.townsend-records.co.uk/artis ... re&pType=1

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll? ... :MESELX:IT
johnfoyle
 
Posts: 11207
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:37 pm
Location: Dublin , Ireland

Re: Thea Gilmore covers ‘The St Stephens Day Murders’

Postby johnfoyle » Wed Nov 04, 2009 7:43 am

Hear Thea/Mark's cover here -

http://www.myspace.com/theagilmore
johnfoyle
 
Posts: 11207
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:37 pm
Location: Dublin , Ireland

Re: Thea Gilmore covers ‘The St Stephens Day Murders’

Postby Neil. » Wed Nov 04, 2009 9:28 am

Good version! Lyrics are articulated more clearly than Elvis's version.

It reminds me that you could do a whole compilation CD called

Party Party - Godawful family get-togethers as observed by Elvis Costello

    St Stephen's Day Murders
    Party Party
    The World And His Wife
    When I Was Cruel No 3 (Wedding)

....okay, well - I guess that's all - unless anyone can remember any others?

By the way, the mention of Irn Bru mixed with Tia Maria makes me wanna vom! Just like the Advocaat and Tizer in 'Party Party'.
Neil.
 
Posts: 850
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2005 6:14 am
Location: London

Re: Thea Gilmore covers ‘The St Stephens Day Murders’

Postby johnfoyle » Wed Nov 11, 2009 8:32 pm

Dayve Dean blogs -

http://www.dayve.co.uk/blog/2009/09/the ... t-now.html

Wednesday, 11 November 2009

Thea Gilmore: Strange Communion out now

(extract)


Thea Gilmore's new album "Strange Communion" is now available. It features 10 songs including a cover of Elvis Costello and The Chieftans' "The St Stephen's Day Murders". Thea has recorded it as a duet with Mark Radcliffe (BBC Radio 2 and The Family Mahone) and I sing backing vocals on it along with three other guys ('the four wise men'!). The rest of the album is also well worth a listen.
johnfoyle
 
Posts: 11207
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:37 pm
Location: Dublin , Ireland

Re: Thea Gilmore covers ‘The St Stephens Day Murders’

Postby johnfoyle » Fri Nov 20, 2009 7:53 am

http://www.thisisnottingham.co.uk/enter ... ticle.html

Interview: Thea Gilmore

Friday, November 20, 2009, 07:30




The latest album from Oxford's indie-folk singer songwriter Thea Gilmore features songs by Elvis Costello and Yoko Ono and is her first Christmas album. She speaks to PETER PALMER.

SHE admits a Christmas album isn't the easiest project to undertake if one wants to retain a respectable level of credibility. But that's exactly what Thea Gilmore has done with her latest release, Strange Communion.

"It's hard not to associate the phrase Christmas album with a complete cheese-fest," she laughs.

"With the same 15 or so songs that we're drip fed whenever we go out to shop, eat, drink or pretty much anything, between late October and late December."

So why do it? There are two reasons, she says.

"I absolutely love Christmas. For all its hijacking by commerce, all its licence for insincerity, it's still a time of year that celebrates home and human connection, and it's a time when my icy little heart is prone to melt into a small, mulled wine-scented puddle on the floor.

"Secondly, in recent years a few artists I admire have released Christmas albums, notably Low and the McGarrigle sisters. I've realised how much there is to write and sing about in the winter solstice and the many ways it's celebrated." Here's her track-by-track rundown:

(extract)

The St Stephen's Day Murders: Elvis Costello recorded it on a Chieftains record, having co-written it with Paddy Moloney. I immediately wanted to co-opt Mark Radcliffe to sing it with me. I knew the black humour in the song would suit Mark to a T.
johnfoyle
 
Posts: 11207
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:37 pm
Location: Dublin , Ireland

Re: Thea Gilmore covers ‘The St Stephens Day Murders’

Postby johnfoyle » Mon Dec 07, 2009 1:57 am

http://entertainment.timesonline.co.uk/ ... 944556.ece

From The Times
December 7, 2009

Thea Gilmore at Bush Hall, London W12

Lisa Verrico



Striding on stage at Bush Hall, Thea Gilmore asked, “Are you feeling twinkly?” before opening the show with a song called Listen, the Snow is Falling. As if her fans weren’t already aware, the acclaimed, English folkie soon confessed all. “I’ve only gone and made a seasonal album,” she said. “I’m hesitating to use the C-word.”

Gilmore’s ninth studio album, Strange Communion, released last month, certainly isn’t a typical collection of Christmas songs. The only covers are of obscure tracks by Yoko Ono and Elvis Costello — the latter, The St Stephen’s Day Murders, delivered as a jaunty duet with the radio DJ Mark Radcliffe. The rest are originals inspired by sources as diverse as T. S. Eliot, pagan sun gods and hearing Jona Lewie on the radio.

After more than a decade of releasing records and attracting fans of the calibre of Bruce Springsteen and Joan Baez, Gilmore should be selling out venues several times this size. Why her commercial breakthrough has never quite come was hard to comprehend, not least when she sang the spine-chilling, three-year-old single Old Soul and the crowd collectively held its breath. Even the silly ditty Oh Come On! — during which fans were spurred on to shout out the title by Gilmore joking about Simon Cowell’s positive influence on pop or bankers deserving their bonuses — was captivating country-pop.

Still only 30, Gilmore may yet gain the recognition she deserves for her smartly observed, sharply written songs and truly enchanting vocals that recalled a richer Joni Mitchell on minor-key ballads and, on faster, fiddle-backed tracks, Kirsty MacColl. At the moment, married to her guitarist and producer Nigel Stonier, with whom she has a young son, Gilmore seems happy to do as she pleases. Hence, her Christmas album.

Backed by a four-piece band, the songs from Strange Communion ranged from the haunting, hymnal Sol Invictus, which could have passed for vintage Clannad, to a Carole King-like slowie, Drunken Angel, an ode to the “slightly pissed” guardian angel that Gilmore believes sits on her shoulder. Her effortless country cover of Blue Christmas was charming and The St Stephen’s Day Murders had shades of the Pogues’ Christmas classic Fairytale of New York.

The catchy new single That’ll Be Christmas, possibly Gilmore’s most commercial-sounding release to date, took in references to mistletoe, French beer and even some whistling without coming close to tacky. “I decided to write a Christmas hit,” Gilmore half-joked. “Either the public will never know it or this could be your last chance to catch me in a venue this size.”

The crowd laughed loudly, but you couldn’t help hoping that the hit bit might come true.

Tomorrow, Cox’s Yard, Stratford; Wednesday, Huntingdon Hall, Worcester(www.theagilmore.net)
johnfoyle
 
Posts: 11207
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:37 pm
Location: Dublin , Ireland

Re: Thea Gilmore covers ‘The St Stephens Day Murders’

Postby johnfoyle » Wed Dec 09, 2009 2:11 pm

http://www.theartsdesk.com/index.php?op ... &Itemid=29

Thea Gilmore, rediscovering Christmas

Thursday, 03 December 2009

Written by Adam Sweeting

(extract)

For balance, there's the Elvis Costello/Paddy Moloney composition "The St Stephen's Day Murders", a snapshot of the booze-sodden anarchy that envelops many a family Christmas.


"I think that's the best song about the realities of a family Christmas I've ever heard,
and it's just such a laugh," Gilmore reckons. "It's hilarious to play, because it's got more chords than you can practically take breath in, and it ties my fingers in knots. It took forever to get it right in the studio because it hasn't really got a standpoint. Normally if a song's in 4/4 it'll have a point where it stops and starts again, but it doesn't have that, it just goes round and round in a circle. It's an amazing piece of writing."
johnfoyle
 
Posts: 11207
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:37 pm
Location: Dublin , Ireland

Re: Thea Gilmore covers ‘The St Stephens Day Murders’

Postby GCM » Tue Dec 15, 2009 7:04 pm

Thea was in cracking form at King Tuts (Glasgow) on Tuesday night and sang this song as one of her encores.
Just brilliant.
User avatar
GCM
 
Posts: 30
Joined: Sat Dec 16, 2006 12:51 pm

Re: Thea Gilmore covers ‘The St Stephens Day Murders’

Postby johnfoyle » Sun Dec 20, 2009 4:40 am

http://entertainment.timesonline.co.uk/ ... 959014.ece

From The Sunday Times

December 20, 2009

Thea Gilmore: Strange Communion

Mark Edwards


It is a sign of the increasingly polarised musical landscape (the lucky few with the big marketing budgets up front in the spotlight; the vast majority skulking in the shadows) that Thea Gilmore has managed to establish herself as unarguably one of the finest singer-songwriters of her generation without ever reaching a mass audience. Bruce Springsteen is a fan, but you’re probably not. So it would be an odd, but not unwelcome, development if, after 10 albums, Gilmore finally broke through on the back of a Christmas single. The charmingly sing-along That’ll Be Christmas is already getting playlisted and should help to steer new listeners towards this excellent Christmas album. Strange Communion ranges more widely than many seasonal records, concerning itself with pagan festivals as well as the modern Christmas, referencing the poetry of Louis MacNeice and TS Eliot, and finding room for a song by that well-known festive favourite Yoko Ono (a truly gorgeous version of Listen, the Snow Is Falling). Beyond all this, Gilmore ropes in Radio 2’s Mark Radcliffe as an unlikely sparring partner to romp through The St Stephen’s Day Murders, written by Elvis Costello and the Chieftains’ Paddy Moloney.

It’s not quite up there with Shane MacGowan and Kirsty MacColl doing Fairytale of New York, but it’s a worthy addition to the catalogue of songs aimed at those who don’t find the season quite as magical as some Christmas songs suggest it is


Fullfill/Fruitcake FCCD117
johnfoyle
 
Posts: 11207
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:37 pm
Location: Dublin , Ireland

Re: Thea Gilmore covers ‘The St Stephens Day Murders’

Postby johnfoyle » Sat Feb 13, 2010 7:19 am

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QuisenFO ... r_embedded

Thea Gilmore - The St. Stephen's Day Murders Live @ Telford's Warehouse Chester 21 December 2009
johnfoyle
 
Posts: 11207
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:37 pm
Location: Dublin , Ireland

‘The St Stephens Day Murders’

Postby johnfoyle » Sun Dec 26, 2010 5:54 am

Elvis' take on this last week in Chicago-


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VK94xnSg ... tu.be&hd=1
johnfoyle
 
Posts: 11207
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:37 pm
Location: Dublin , Ireland

Re: ‘The St Stephens Day Murders’

Postby johnfoyle » Sun Dec 25, 2011 9:13 am

Seasonal 'bump' and new working youTube clip -

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FD1If3RE ... re=related
johnfoyle
 
Posts: 11207
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 4:37 pm
Location: Dublin , Ireland

Re: ‘The St Stephens Day Murders’

Postby Neil. » Sun Dec 25, 2011 11:02 am

Great - as I always, say - am sure I've said it before - this song sums up the Christmas excesses perfectly - people using up all the drinks when everything else has run out, therefore mixing Tia Maria and Irn Bru cocktails - much like Party, Party, with the Advocaat and Tizer cocktails! Hilarious, but also wants to make me throw up.

Also, very like The World and His Wife - another 'family party' song - which also lampoons the hilarious, lecherous uncle with the 'gin-soaked whiskers and kisses of sherry' - GROSS! But so true.

MERRY CHRISTMAS, ONE AND ALL!

xxx
Neil.
 
Posts: 850
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2005 6:14 am
Location: London

Re: ‘The St Stephens Day Murders’

Postby Neil. » Sun Dec 25, 2011 11:03 am

P.S. Verbal, you'll be glad to know that, true to form, I'm pissed, typing this! Nadolig Llawen! xxx
Neil.
 
Posts: 850
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2005 6:14 am
Location: London

Next

Return to Elvis Costello General Discussion

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Bing [Bot] and 3 guests