Dept. Of Lists: Top 5 Philly Rock’n'Roll Christmas Traditions

nightbefore2009Let’s count ‘em down!

5. The Night Before on XPN: For 16 years, DJ Robert Drake has been blowing off his loved ones, holing up in a booth at WXPN and providing the XPN listening area — now bigger than ever before and reaching deep into Pennsyltucky — with as much holiday joy as one man can stand. From midnight to midnight this Christmas Eve, he’ll be back, mining the XPN vaults for any and all holiday-related tunage, and delivering it to you, the harried listener who just remembered he does not have scotch tape.

4. Jon Solomon’s 24-Hour Holiday Radio on WPRB: Perhaps the only man around who can best Drake’s holiday stamina is Jon Solomon, now in his 22nd year of doing a 24-hour Christmas marathon on WPRB. (We had both of these guys interview each other a few years ago, and it was pretty civil, but we are sure that, in a consequence-free world, given the chance, each one would kill the other and then we’d have to listen to the Xmas music channel on cable TV, and NOBODY WANTS THAT.) This year’s WPRB marathon begins on Wednesday, December 24 at 6:00 PM ET and ends Thursday, December 25 at 6:00 PM ET. How either of these guys do this without lots and lots of drugs is beyond us.

3. Lola Vs. The Piano Man, Christmas Eve @ 700: Every year, your barkeeps Ed and Woody at the 700 do a nice little thing for all the folks in the neighborhood who don’t have anywhere else to be on Christmas Eve: They get them drunk as shit and then see how many times they can get the whole bar to sing along to The Kinks’ “Father Christmas” and, for reasons unknown, Billy Joel’s “Piano Man” as many times as possible. We’ve never been fortunate enough to be able to go to this — it ranks second on our list of “Other Christmas” fantasies, second only to “Jewish Christmas,” where we blow off our families in favor of Chinese food and movies at the Ritz — but god damn, one of these years, we’re doing it. There will be hell to pay, but we bet it’ll be worth it.

2. Alan Mann, “Christmas On The Block”: The late, great Philly punk troubadour is remembered around this time every year because of this tune. It is our freak Christmas birthright. Happy Christmas wherever you are, Alan.

1. Stacie George’s Christmas Night Party at The Khyber: When you start getting all of those annoying texts on Christmas about getting together after time with the parentals is up, don’t bother responding to them. Just go here. Everyone who’s going out that night will already be there.

  • chuck63

    How do you know that lots and lots of drugs are NOT involved?

  • tips

    These guys are so clean you could eat your dinner off ‘em.

  • http://www.keepingscoreathome.com jonsolomon

    Please do not eat any meals off of me.

  • Timo

    RUBA is open on Christman Eve. Wear your drinking shoes.