The Smithereens have reached into their vault for their new single, “Christmas Morning,” which was recorded in 1994 by all four original members (the late Pat DiNizio on vocals, Jim Babjak on guitar, Mike Mesaros on bass and Dennis Diken on drums). You can listen to it below.
The band included a different version of the Babjak-written song on their 2007 album Christmas With the Smithereens, recorded with bassist Severo Jornacion instead of Mesaros. The new single’s version, produced by Don Dixon, has never been officially released before, though it was made available to fan club members in a limited edition in 1995.
The lyrics look at the holiday with a childlike sense of wonder and optimism. “For me, Christmas has always been a time of peace and reflection,” said Babjak in a press release. “Even just for one day, all will be right in the world. And in this time of Covid-19 and political divisiveness, the song couldn’t be more vital. The song expresses musically and lyrically a timeless feeling of hope and calm, that ‘… waking up on Christmas morning, everything’s okay on Christmas Day.’ ”
The song will be released as a digital download and as a green, seven-inch vinyl record on Dec. 4, on the band’s Tollie label. “ ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas” (from Christmas With the Smithereens), featuring Diken on vocals, is the B-side.
The band is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year, and promises “new music and touring to come in 2021.” Since DiNizio’s death in 2017, Babjak, Diken and Mesaros have continued to perform with lead vocals and guitar by Marshall Crenshaw at some shows, and by Robin Wilson of The Gin Blossoms at others.
To purchase the single, and for other Smithereens information, visit officialsmithereens.com.
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