Little Steven Van Zandt and his Disciples of Soul are capping another busy year by appearing in a new movie, “The Christmas Chronicles,” that is currently streaming on Netflix. Van Zandt (as Wolfie), DOS guitarist Marc Ribler (as Dusty) and the other band members (who aren’t given names) back Kurt Russell, as Santa Claus, on “Santa Claus Is Back in Town,” in a production number reminiscent of Elvis Presley’s “Jailhouse Rock.”
You can see a snippet of the scene in the trailer, below.
The song is also heard over the movie’s end credits.
“The Christmas Chronicles” was directed by Chris Columbus. He also directed the 1992 movie “Home Alone 2: Lost in New York,” whose soundtrack featured the Van Zandt-written “All Alone on Christmas,” sung by Darlene Love and featuring Van Zandt on guitar plus other Disciples of Soul and E Street Band members.
Written by the all-time great songwriting team, Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller, the bluesy “Santa Claus Is Back in Town” was first recorded by Presley on Elvis’ Christmas Album, in 1957. The album remains, more than 60 years later, the best-selling holiday album of all time, with more than 10 million copies sold. (Kenny G’s Miracles: The Holiday Album is second, in case you were wondering.)