Christmas is almost close enough to touch! Hopefully, the holiday spirit has found its way into your heart by now. So many people I know have said they just “can’t get into it” this year. I feel sorry for them.
For me, music plays a big role in super-charging the Christmas spirit. How can you not sing along when you hear Burl Ives singing “Holly Jolly Christmas,” or tap your fingers when Brenda Lee’s “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree” comes on the radio? And doesn’t everyone get chills when they hear Bing Crosby’s “White Christmas” and Nat King Cole’s “The Christmas Song”? I like to say it isn’t officially Christmas until I play “Leroy the Redneck Reindeer” by Joe Diffie on Froggy, but I guess you can’t really lump that little gem into the same category.
An other classic holiday tune for many Americans is Elvis Presley’s “Blue Christmas.” Last year, the song got new life when it was re-recorded for the “Elvis Presley Christmas Duets” CD. The lucky lady who got to sing with the King? Martina McBride. Not only did she get to duet with Elvis, but she starred in a video with him, too! How was this possible?
First, footage was taken from Presley’s 1968 “comeback” special. Amazingly, this is the only known video of Elvis performing a Christmas song! Conveniently, there was an open space between Elvis and guitarist Scotty Moore onstage, where Martina could be spliced in. Producer George Flanigen scoured the original Elvis special for appropriate shots of the King, and pieced bits and pieces of video footage together. Martina filmed her parts in front of a “green screen.” The end result was effective, creepy even. They really seem to be looking at each other when they’re singing! All in all, Flanigen says, it took about four weeks to make the video.
Enjoy Martina McBride’s death-defying duet with the late, great King here today!