40. “CHRISTMAS ALPHABET” – DICKIE VALENTINE

Weeks at number one: 3 (16th December 1955 – 20 January 1956…..and if this looks like more than three weeks….it is…..the Whole Record Industry took time off at christmas, the slackers) / Length: 2m07s / Label: Decca

Notable for…being the first proper christmassy number one

MELODY & HARMONY ~ 3 : Dickie began the year with a number one, and he comes back to us now with more lilty lift-pop, sharing the same dotted-crotchet rhythms in the melody, which are grouped into what i might call iambic hexameter….but i’m not sure if that exists, and even sure that this is it..

WORDS ~ 2 : An acrostic poem made musical, complete with necessary bumbling word-order manipulation. Also this line: “S is for old Santa, who makes every kid his pet” is not really what christmas is about for me.

VOICE ~ 7 : Oh Dickie

STRUCTURE ~ 1 : Spells out Christmas twice. Doesn’t have a chorus.

PRODUCTION & ARRANGEMENT ~ 4 : yeah, fine, I think. Its kinda hard to hear cos there’s a man fixing our toilet upstairs and a man fixing our washing machine downstairs

COOLNESS/STYLE ~ 0 : Oh Dickie

ORIGINALITY/NEWNESS ~ 1 : it’s like a sitcom Christmas special: the same as a normal episode, but without any of the good bits, and a horrible sense of morality

CATCHYNESS ~ 3 : Stupidly wordy, and whenever I try singing it I just get diverted into ‘Finger Of Suspicion’, which probably says something

CONNECTION/EMOTIONAL HOLD ~ 1 : It’s hard to tell in early October, but I’m pretty sure I hate it

MORALITY/INTENT ~ 1 : Basically I love Dickie Valentine, but I’ve tried to imagine a name sleazier than his, and I don’t think it can be done. He’s a Royston Vasey inhabitant in waiting. Actually “Royston Vasey” is a sleazier name.

OVERALL ~ 25/100

Spotify here, lyrics here, or buy it: CD or mp3

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