Monday, December 31, 2018
Murphy Trucking Company: The Treasures of Christmas--3M Club Chorus (1980)
I was going to start my essay with, "This isn't your usual Christmas record," but is there such a thing? What's a usual Christmas record? I'm at the point where I'm not sure. It's possible there are no usual Christmas records, which would mean that all Christmas records are unusual by definition. The logical problem, of course, is that, if all Christmas records are unusual, then unusual is the norm. In which case, all Christmas records are usual. This is what an intense season of holiday music posting will do to you. Learn from my example. Don't let this happen to you.
So, the cartoon character is Murph, who looks like a Leprechaun but I'm almost sure is supposed to be an elf. Or an elfrechaun, maybe. On this disc, the 3M Club Chorus (don't ask me) sings five selections for the Murphy Trucking Company of Minneapolis/St. Paul, and they start out with We Need a Little Christmas, except it's called Melody of Christmas on the label. How on earth did they get away with that?
Anyway, this is followed by Santa Claus Is Coming to Town, then the rest of the numbers are slow meaning-of-the-season songs. The 3M Club Chorus is very good, and the stereo sound is decent. Nevertheless, the star of the show here is the label design, the clear vinyl, and the goofy fold-out cover. Side One was pressed considerably off-center, which is why I didn't rip this last year. This time, I got out my tapered reamer (after doing the label scans) and widened both spindle holes. Took a few tries, but I got Side One centered. The old Dual turntables had removable spindles, which was a great idea that I wish would have become standard. But it didn't.
Ironic that this is dated 1980, as the Murphy Trucking Company folded in the 1980s. And if anyone can interpret the dates/captions on the front cover, please comment. "Minnesota's gift to the nation"--1977. "Santa Claus Is Coming to Town"--1978. The... what?
Maybe Murph is a Leprechaun, and he does seasonal work at the North Pole and sees no need to change his suit. Clothes in elf sizes are hard to find, unless you're willing to wear children's styles.
To the Murphy and the 3M Club Chorus: The Treasures of Christmas, Murphy Trucking Co., 1980
Melody of Christmas
Santa Claus Is Coming to Town
Through the Eyes of a Child
3M Club Chorus--The Treasures of Christmas. A Murphy Production, 1980.