And now, a Bird is the Worm holiday music recommendation special…


Wait, did you think this site would be a refuge from holiday music?  Wrong.  Oh so wrong.  But before you go thinking you got a lump of coal for your present, don’t forget that coal is where diamonds come from, too.

This deconstruction of popular holiday tunes might not meet your standards for gemstones, but the quartet of tenor saxophonist Brad Linde, soprano saxophonist Patrick Booth, guitarist Aaron Quinn and drummer Jonathan Taylor have served up a little gift with this free improv session.

Each track gets increasingly more strange.  It starts with the subtle restraint of “Little Drummer Boy,” ratchets things up with a peaceful-to-chaotic impression of “Let it Snow,” then shifts over to an ominous “Up On the Housetop” before ending with a version of “Twas the Night Before Christmas” that might’ve been pulled straight from a Tom Waits holiday-themed nightmare.

This is Cleats, and their album Xmas And…

Your album personnel:  Brad Linde (tenor sax), Patrick Booth (soprano sax), Aaron Quinn (guitar) and Jonathan Taylor (drums).

The album is Self-Produced.

Listen to more of the album at the artist’s Bandcamp page.

Jazz from the Washington, DC scene.

Available at:  Bandcamp