2012’s Best Halloween costumes: ‘Say Anything,’ Ludacris, ‘Back to the Future,’ leg lamp and more

Here’s my take on the best Halloween costumes of 2012, from celebrities dressed as other famous characters to ordinary people with really clever outfits. Enjoy!

Lloyd Dobler from ‘Say Anything…’ [link]

'Say Anything' Halloween costume

‘Say Anything’ Halloween costume by Nikki S, featuring her baby as the boombox John Cusack holds over his head.

‘Back to the Future’: Baby Marty McFly [link]

‘Back to the Future’: Baby Marty McFly in a flying Delorean

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Deaf The Halls: DeafGeoff’s hilarious album of Christmas songs and holiday parodies, revisited

Deaf The Halls, DeafGeoff's holiday parody album

'Deaf The Halls' is a holiday album featuring Christmas and Hanukkah songs, plus parodies sung and rapped (badly) by DeafGeoff. Be careful when listening in the car, you may drive off the road laughing.

In my radio days at HOT 107.9, I recorded songs as DeafGeoff on my own holiday albums called “Deaf The Halls.” I sang and rapped so badly that everyone seemed to get a kick out of it (and I enjoyed having fun with it), so I couldn’t resist doing it for four years straight. I did my own versions of some Christmas classics, a couple tunes for the Hanukkah crowd, and even wrote a few parodies of popular songs by Kanye West, Mystikal, and Bing Crosby. I put together a sort of “greatest hits” in 2008, and for those that would like to hear it again — or have never heard it! — here’s the track listing, a free .zip download of the mp3 files, and four music videos from Deaf The Halls. Enjoy!

Deaf The Halls: The Deaf-initive Collection
1. Toy Lockdown (parody of Kanye West’s “Love Lockdown”)
2. Deaf The Halls, Part 1
3. Deaf In A Box
4. Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer
5. Party Like Santa Claus (parody of Shop Boyz’ “Party Like A Rock Star”)
6. Rockin’ Around The Christmas Tree
7. I Have A Little Dreidel
8. Ho Ho Ho f/ Marty & Sugarcane Chris (parody of Hurricane Chris’ “A Bay Bay”)
9. Jingle Bell Rock
10. Deaf The Halls, Part Deux (parody of Mystikal’s “Shake Ya Ass”)
11. The Chipmunk Song f/ Marty & Shannon
12. Deaf Christmas
13. Santa Baby
14. Do You Hear What I Hear?
15. Cholla At Ya Boy (Happy Chanukah) f/ Jus Mic
16. Baby It’s Cold Outside w/ Marty the One Man Party
17. The Christmas Song
18. Last Christmas
19. Silent Night
20. Auld Lang Syne

» Click here to download the “Deaf The Halls” collection in mp3 format [.zip file]

Deaf The Halls, the music videos:

Merry Chrismukkah and Happy Festivus (for the rest of us)!

Best 4th of July songs? My favorite music for watching fireworks on Independence Day

What's on your 4th of July soundtrack?

It’s Independence Day – what songs do you want to hear while watching fireworks light the night sky? You can listen to patriotic songs like “The Star-Spangled Banner” and Lee Greenwood’s “God Bless The USA” if you want, or even country anthems like Toby Keith’s “Courtesy Of The Red White & Blue” but I prefer a more varied mix for my soundtrack to seeing those beautiful explosions in the sky*. Yes, 4th of July is the celebration of our nation’s birthday (we’re 235 years young!) but a lot of the songs I prefer on this holiday are about the whimsy and romance of sharing the view with someone special — or the heartbreak of watching those bottle rockets alone. Here’s what I listen to on this holiday:

Soundgarden – “4th of July”
If the world were really going to end on July 4th like aliens tried to do in Will Smith’s Independence Day, this would definitely be an appropriate track to hear.

Martina McBride – “Independence Day”
The only country song I enjoy on 4th of July, though McBride’s brand of the genre and most modern country isn’t really true “country” anyway.

Mariah Carey – “4th Of July”
“Truly I have never felt the same inside like that Fourth of July…” This song makes me the saddest on this list, but it’s a beautiful track and I could listen to it all day.

Katy Perry – “Firework”
This song has nothing to do with the holiday, and it’s the only time I’ve ever heard anyone refer to fireworks in the singular, but I love the overall message and the lyrically fist-pumping chorus.

Aimee Mann – “4th of July”
“Today’s the fourth of July, another June has gone by, and when they light up our town I just think ‘what a waste of gunpowder and sky,’ I’m certain that I am alone in harboring thoughts of our home…”

Plain White T’s – “Fireworks”
Probably the happiest song on this list: “Fireworks flyin’ whenever we’re together, I know, you know, that I know you love me.”

Bruce Springsteen – “Independence Day”
A troubled, quiet song representing the Boss’s many mixed emotions regarding patriotism.

Jimmy Eat World – “Just Watch The Fireworks”
Jim’s promise to see the fireworks with a lost love is an anthem for who’s ever been riddled with insomnia, waiting for them to come back.

Elliott Smith – “Independence Day”

“Gonna spend the day higher than high…” Elliott Smith truly was a Roman candle that blazed brightly and briefly on the music scene (he won an Oscar for Best Original Song with “Miss Misery” in Good Will Hunting) for a short time before his tragic suicide.

What songs do you have on your 4th of July soundtrack? Leave a comment!

*Note: There is also a band called Explosions In The Sky, which is worth checking out if you dig rock-based instrumental landscapes. Their music isn’t bad, but it’s better as background music than on your iPod workout mix, which is why so much of their stuff has appeared on the TV show “Friday Night Lights.”

Stocking Stuffers: 2010’s 30 best new holiday songs

The best way to spread Christmas cheer is singing loud for all to hear (unless it’s Deaf The Halls, good grief). Every year there’s new music for the season, and here are the 30 best holiday songs that came out this year:

AHMIR – “Pray / Let It Snow” (video)
Andrew WK & Rodney the Mailman – “Silent Night” (video)
Asleep At The Wheel – “Santa Loves To Boogie” (mp3)
Beach House – “I Do Not Care For The Winter Sun” (mp3)
The Boy Least Likely To – “Christmas Isn’t Christmas” (mp3)
Cary Brothers – “Father Christmas” (mp3)
Cavo – “Home For Christmas” (stream)
Coldplay – “Christmas Lights” (video)
Fleet Foxes – “White Winter Hymnal” (mp3)
The Futureheads – “Christmas Was Better In The 80’s” (video)
Glee Cast – “Deck The Rooftop” / “Jingle Bells” / “O Christmas Tree” (video)
Jack Black & Jason Segal – “Little Drummer Boy 2010” (video)
Kanye West – “Christmas In Harlem” (mp3)
The Killers – “Boots” (video)
The Magnetic Fields – “Everything Is One Big Christmas Tree” (mp3)
Mariah Carey – “Oh! Santa / All I Want For Christmas Is You” (Mashup) (stream)
Maroon 5 w/ Sara Bareilles – “Happy Xmas (War Is Over)” (video)
NOTA – “All I Want For Christmas Is You” (video) <– for the a cappella/"Sing-Off" fans!
Rihanna – "A Child Is Born" (stream)
Sean Kingston – “Little Drummer Boy” (stream)
Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings – “Ain’t No Chimney In The Projects” (mp3)
She & Him w/ Conan O’Brien – “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas” (video)
The Spill Canvas – “It Came Upon A Midnight Clear” (stream)
The Streets – “Scrooge & Marley (I Don’t Want It To Be Me)” (video)
Sufjan Stevens w/ The National – “Silent Night” (stream)
Summer Camp – “Christmas Wrapping” (mp3) <– Waitresses’ Cover
Train – “Shake Up Christmas” (video)
The Walkmen – “Holiday Road” (video) <– from National Lampoon’s Vacation!

Merry Christmas, you filthy animals.

‘Deaf The Halls’ – holiday songs performed (badly) by yours truly

From 2005-2008, I recorded three holiday albums titled Deaf The Halls for HOT 107.9’s Marty & Shannon in the Morning, plus a best-of collection with bonus tracks. Best of? Despite shout-outs from Dr. Elmo (“Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer”) and Weird Al Yankovic (the king of parodies), it was truly some terrible music. But it was funny.

I can’t sing. I can barely rap. Yes, I’m hard-of-hearing, and sometimes I can’t tell just how off-pitch, off-key and off-beat I am… but I know it’s bad. So bad it’s funny. I’m well aware of how ridiculous this is/was, but I thought it’d be fun to revisit and share with anyone in the mood for a chuckle this holiday season:

DEAF THE HALLS, REVISITED: Holiday Songs by DeafGeoff
1. “Deaf The Halls, Part Deux” (parody of Mystikal’s “Shake Ya Ass”)
2. “Do You Hear What I Hear?”
3. “Ho Ho Ho” feat. Marty & Sugarcane (parody of Hurricane Chris’ “Ay Bay Bay”)
4. “Jingle Bell Rock”
5. “Last Christmas”
6. “Party Like Santa Claus” (parody of Shop Boyz’ “Party Like A Rockstar”)
7. “Rockin’ Around The Christmas Tree”
8. “Silent Night”
9. “The Chipmunk Song” feat. Marty & Shannon
10. “Toy Lockdown” (parody of Kanye West’s “Love Lockdown”)
[ Click here to download all 10 songs in mp3 format ]

Oh, and there were also a few music videos: Continue reading

Holiday gift guide for the music lover in your life

Today is the busiest shipping day of the year for Christmas mail, but you’ve still got a little bit of time to send holiday packages out and make sure they get to your loved ones before December 24th. If you haven’t gotten something for the music lover in your life yet, here’s some suggestions:

Tape Express

You’ve already seen the USB Turntable ($160) that lets you record your favorite vinyl into mp3s on your computer, but did you know that you can easily do the same with your old mixtapes and early Boyz II Men cassettes? Get the Tape Express ($80) at Urban Outfitters and you can capture every hiss and pop on that mix your junior high girlfriend gave you.
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Halloween Jell-O Shots

Happy Halloween!  The guys at myscienceproject.org spend a lot of time working on Jell-O Shots for some reason, and they’ve got an awesome collection of Halloween Jell-O Shots and how to make them.

Clockwise, from Top Left: Candy Corn Jell-O Shots, Eyeballs In Toxic Jell-O, Gummy Worms In Lime Slime, and Great Drunken Pumpkin Jell-O Shots

Last year, my friend Danielle made the candy corn jell-o shots and, not only did they look perfect, they actually tasted good too!

Also on their list of recipes?  Intensive Jell-O Ward, Jagermeister Black Jell-O Shots, Apple Cider Jell-O Shots, Brain Hemorrhage Jell-O Shots, Coconut Malibu Eyeballs and Boo-Berry Black Light Jell-O Shots.  Click here for the whole list and how to make them

Note: you should only be making/having these if you’re over the age of 21. Trick or treat!