Every year, around this time, I give thanks that I no longer work retail. Sore feet and rude customers go with the territory, but December (nay, November) brings with it a terrifying onslaught of Little Drummer Boys. I know folks who can’t abide Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer, or the Singing Dogs’ Jingle Bells, but as far as I’m concerned, nothing hastens a psychotic break faster than a few dozen pa rum pa pum pum pum rum pa pum pum pum rum pa pum pum pums.
It seems horror legend Christopher Lee, familiar to younger fans as Star Wars’ Count Dooku, feels my pain..and relishes it. It’s a cliche for an aging actor to release an album of seasonal chestnuts, but the 91-year-old Lee’s A Heavy Metal Christmas is a thing apart. His take on The Little Drummer Boy is the sonic equivalent of Rosemary’s Baby.
I can’t say that I prefer Lee’s to any other version – they’re all tortuous in my book- but I’m at peace with admiring it in the abstract. A stunt? Maybe, but he seems wholly sincere in his video greeting below, wishing us all a very happy Christmas and “for the sake of the world and those people in it” a safe New Year.
Ayun Halliday reveals the true meaning of of Xmas here. Follow her @AyunHalliday
Christopher Lee Narrates a Beautiful Animation of Tim Burton’s Poem, Nightmare Before Christmas
Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Raven,” Read by Christopher Walken, Vincent Price, and Christopher Lee
Orson Welles Records Two Songs with the 1980s Heavy-Metal Band Manowar
Is he only the vocals or can his crunchy old fingers still blaze leads like that?