Monday, March 31, 2014

W.O.C.K On Vinyl - The Royal Guardsmen: Snoopy's Christmas (1967)


Before things get too serious here at Rock On Vinyl, I thought it might be fun to post a song / album at the end of each month, that could be categorized as being either Weird, Obscure, Crazy or just plain Korny.
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A follow up to their earlier "Snoopy vs. the Red Baron", "Snoopy's Christmas" is about the loveable Peanut's character 'Snoopy'  going out to fight the Red Baron on Christmas Eve. The Baron has Snoopy at his mercy after a long dogfight but, instead of shooting him down he forces Snoopy to land and offers Snoopy a holiday toast. Afterward, Snoopy and the Red Baron fly their separate ways, "each knowing they'd meet on some other day".
Although fictitious, the song recalls a historical event. During World War I, in 1914, "The Christmas Truce" was initiated not by German and British commanders, but by the soldiers themselves. The length of the cease-fire varied by location, and was reported to have been as brief as Christmas Day or as long as the week between Christmas and New Year's Day. Trench-bound combatants exchanged small gifts across the lines, with Germans giving beer to the British, who sent tobacco and tinned meat back in return. No Man's Land was cleared of dead bodies, trenches were repaired and drained, and troops from both sides shared pictures of their families and, in some places, used No Man's Land for friendly games of football.
The song even has the initiator correct as it was generally the German soldiers who called over to the British and initiated the truce and, in the song, it is the Red Baron—a German WWI hero—who extends the hand of Christmas friendship to Snoopy.
"Snoopy's Christmas" reached the #1 position in the Australian pop charts in 1967, and continues to be played as a holiday favorite on most 'oldie' radio stations [extract from wikipedia]
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I can clearly remember playing this single on the families large HSV record player at the tender age of 8 and listening in awe to the sounds of the dogfight between the Bloody Red Baron and our hero Snoopy in their biplanes. What wonderful memories came flooding back when I played this single for the first time in god knows how many years the other day. So I thought it was time that this Korny childhood tune resurfaced for this month's WOCK on Vinyl posting and I hope that it puts a smile on your face, and perhaps for some of you, bring back your own fond memories of growing up back in the 60's.

Because my single has seen better days (being played to death on a very worn stylus), I am providing a CD rip of "Snoopy's Christmas" taken from the The Royal Guardsmen's Anthology.
I have however ripped the B-Side of the single "It Kinda Looks Like Christmas" as this track does not appear to have been released on any of their albums. Perhaps this makes the post Obscure as well.
Both tracks have been ripped in MP3 format at 320kps and I've included label scans of the single.
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Snoopy's Christmas  (13Mb)  New Link 04/11/2014
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1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the share. This was special to my childhood, also (this plus the Wombles), and I'd never heard this B-side so that's a nice surprise.

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