(Santa Claus Is Coming To Town – by Bill Evans, instrumental in background) It's nightime in the Big City A department store Santa sneaks a sip of gin Mistletoe makes an old man sad Eight reindeer land on the roof of the Abernathy building “Well it's beginning to look a lot like Christmas. And for the next couple of hours, it's going to sound like Christmas too. This is the special yuletide extravaganza edition of TTRH, chock full of Christmas themes, holiday dreams, and jingle bell schemes.

The Singers and Songs

  • Tom Archia and Gene Ammons
    Swinging for Christmas (Boppin' for Santa)
  • Christmas is A-Comin'
    “One of the few ex-cons who recorded a popular children's album”
  • Lord Nelson
    A Party for Santa
    “The uncrowned king of Soca ”
  • Bob Seger and The Last Heard
    Sock it to Me Santa
    “Some people call Bob the poor man's Bruce Springsteen, but personally, I always thought Bruce was the rich man's Bob Seger…love ‘em both though.”
  • Who Took The Merry Out Of Christmas
    “God's greatest hit makers…Managed to mix a serious message with a soulful dancing beat”
  • Please Come Home For Christmas
    “I think it's actually against the law to do a Christmas program and not play one of his songs…this is one of the best.”
  • Jingle Bells
    “He made a few Christmas singles, and sings the heck out of them”
  • It Must Be Christmas
  • Titus Turner
    Christmas Morning
  • Poor Old Rudolph
    “You're thinkin' ‘How come I never heard that?' That's cause it's a new record, but it sounds like an old record…this group is still recording, trying out different sounds. They kinda mix soul music with a punk rock sound…check ‘em out…Google ‘em!”
  • Blue Xmas
  • Little Esther & Johnny Otis Orchestra
    Far Away Christmas
  • Patsy Raye and the Beatniks
    Beatnik's Wish
    “Hey Patsy, that was great! I learned that in the coffee houses.”
  • Don't Believe in Christmas
    “But they do believe in the power of the B-3 organ. A lot of people think it's a Farfisa but you listen to that solo, and that's a B-3.”
  • Christmas Tree
    “He was a toaster, and I don't mean you could put bread in him…That was so good we might play it twice!”
  • Huey “Piano” Smith and the Clowns
    Silent Night
    “Featuring Jessie Thomas on vocals, kind of an unorthodox Crescent City version.”
  • Must Be Santa
    “They say their mission is to expand the musical taste of their listeners. We have the same mission here on TTRH.”
  • The Enchanters
    Mambo Santa Mambo
  • Celia Cruz & La Senora Matancera
    Fiesta De Navidad
  • Hop Wilson & His Buddies
    Merry Christmas Darling
  • Alton Ellis and The Lipsticks
    Merry Merry Christmas
    “Here's one of the prime movers and shakers in ‘ rocksteady ,' the music that kinda came between ska and reggae.”
  • Alton Ellis and The Lipsticks
    Merry Merry Christmas
    “Here's one of the prime movers and shakers in ‘ rocksteady ,' the music that kinda came between ska and reggae.”
  • June Christy
    The Merriest
    “Here's a song by one of the dreamiest about the merriest”
  • Truckin' Trees For Christmas
    “One of the architects of the Bakersfield sound.”
  • Christmas in Jail
    “To all of our friends listening in behind bars, we know you made mistakes, we're sorry you have to be there, but Merry Christmas to all of you, from all of us here, at Theme Time Radio Hour.”
  • Kay Martin and Her Body Guards
    I Want A Casting Couch For Christmas
    “One of the most popular features on Theme Time Radio Hour is the double entendre – the song that says one thing and maybe means another. This one skates dangerously close to being a single entendre…Kay Martin played in a lot of hotel lounges; our paths crossed more than once when I was on the road. She's a fine performer, always put on a good show.”
  • Sonny Boy Williamson
    Santa Claus
    “I don't need to tell you anything more about Sonny Boy Williamson, we've played him a lot on TTRH. Here's Sonny Boy with his hands in his baby's dresser drawer, and you wouldn't believe what he's trying to find!”
  • The Cool Breezers
    Hello Mr. New Year
  • Mabel Mafuya
    Happy Christmas, Happy New Year
    “She sings a style known as jive. Not the kind of jive like Slim Galliard, but more of a Morabi style, sort of like South African ragtime. It's heavily influenced by American jazz, but originally Morabi was played on pianos with accompaniment from pebble filled cans. By the 30's, it incorporated new instruments, like guitars, concertinas, and banjos. New kinds of Morabi sprang up, including a Morabi / swing fusion, called African Jazz and Jive. Here's a great example of it.”
  • Christmas to New Years
  • What Are You Doing New Year's Eve
    “By the mid-60's Nancy Wilson was the second biggest seller on Capital Records. You know who number one was? That's right, Glen Campbell. Nah, I'm just kidding. It was the Beatles.”

The Other People and Players

  • Allen Bunn
    (Tarheel Slim)
  • Glen Campbell
  • The Babylonians
    “According to research, the most popular resolution in early Babylonia was to return borrowed farm equipment…I wish Harold would bring back my lawn mower.”
  • Tony Robbins
  • Dr. Phil
  • Slim Galliard
  • Jimmy Stewart
  • Alfred Hitchcock
  • Theodore Keep
  • Simon Waronker
  • Alvin Bennett
  • Rosemary Clooney
  • Fidel Castro
    “Right now we'd like to say Feliz Navidad to all of our Cuban Friends”
  • Pope John Paul II
  • Tito Puente
  • Jack The Ripper
  • Count Machuki
  • Dexter Quinn
    “He's an atheist…You know what his favorite movie is? Coincidence on 34th St.”
    The Three Wise Men – Caspar, Balthazar, and Melchior “Three names you don't hear much any more…well, except for Balthazar.”
  • Frank Zappa
    “Once told me that Johnny Otis was the inspiration for his distinctive facial hair. He thought it looked good on Johnny so he decided to grow one just like it.”
  • Mel Walker
  • De La Soul
  • Gill Evans
  • Mel Torme
  • Orson Wells
  • “Who do you think gave them the harmonica?”
  • Tom Stafford
  • James Pierpont
    wrote Jingle Bells in 1857 “…originally wrote it to be a Thanksgiving song, but it was so popular at his church during Thanksgiving season that it was repeated at Christmas time and caught on, and forever more was known as a Christmas song. It was also the first song broadcast from space.”
  • George Jones
  • abolished Christmas in 1649
  • Charles Dickens
  • Bruce Springsteen
  • Sonny Rollins
  • Ken Nelson
  • Longfellow
  • Charlie Parker
  • Merle Haggard

The Other Songs and Albums

The Guests

The Books and Poems

  • (Bob recites)
  • A Christmas Carol
  • The Pickwick Papers
  • A Visit From St. Nicholas (‘Twas The Night Before Christmas)
    (Bob recites)

The Movies and TV Shows

The Places

  • Soweto, South Africa
  • Kingston, Jamaica
    If you're spending Christmas in Jamaica, you might see Santa riding a cart and a donkey
  • Trenchtown
  • Grapeland, TX
  • New Jersey
  • Tacoma, WA
  • Riverside, CA
  • Russia
  • Hillsboro, OH
  • Tobago
  • Ann Arbor, MI
  • Jamaica
  • Detroit, MI
  • Louisiana
  • New York

Record Labels

  • Troubadour Records
  • Liberty Records
  • Etiquette Records
  • Cameo Parkway Records
  • Capitol Records
  • O.K. Records
  • Chess Records

The Recipes

  • 4 oz of plain flour
    a pinch of salt – just a pinch!
    4 oz bread crumbs
    4 oz shredded suet
    1 t mixed spice
    1 t baking powder
    3 oz dark soft brown sugar
    8 oz chopped dried figs
    finely grated rind & the juice of 1 lemon
    2 T milk
    2 beaten eggs Sift salt and flour together, then mix with the remaining dry ingredients. Add the figs, lemon rind and juice, milk, and beaten eggs. Beat well. Mixture should have a soft dropping consistency. Put into a greased 2 pint pudding basin, cover securely and steam for 3 hours. “I like it served with heated golden syrup topping, and a generous pour of custard – makes me hungry just talking about it. My engineer Tex Carbone likes vanilla ice cream on it; I don't understand that at all.”


  • People

Christmas Toasts

  • A Merry Christmas this December to a lot of folks I don't remember.
  • May you never forget what is worth remembering, or remember what is best forgotten.
  • Be merry all, be merry all.
    With holly dress the festive hall,
    Prepare the song, the feast, the ball
    Welcome, Merry Christmas!

“We wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, a pocket full of money and a cellar full of beer.”