Dec 12

too much, part two: the videos

Sometimes I worry I might have an obsessive personality … for example, after I’ve heard about 20 different versions of the “Heat Miser/Snow Miser” song.

Earlier in the week, I was listening to samples, trying to figure out which cover I heard in the office bathroom. Then last night it occurred to me to try YouTube. Then I could share my findings right here. (I love embedding videos.)

First of all, I finally figured out that the version I’d heard in the bathroom was, most definitely, from Big Bad Voodoo Daddy. I had to hear the whole song, not the snippet on Amazon. Here it is, with a slideshow of images from The Year Without a Santa Claus for video.

If you don’t like the images accompanying the music, search on YouTube for “heat miser snow miser” and you can find any number of mashup videos using either the original version of the song or the Big Bad Voodoo Daddy song. I like this one with Coraline (although the picture quality is crummy) but you can also find a delightful one with Thor and Loki from the recent comic-book movies, as well as the X-Men and (for Debby) The Doctor and The Master.

I didn’t realize that The Year Without a Santa Claus had been remade as a live-action TV special in 2006. I haven’t seen it, but the cast sounds like fun: John Goodman as Santa (which he did so well in the Spongebob holiday special), Ethan Suplee as one of the elves, and Carol Kane as Mother Nature. Here’s the Heat Miser/Snow Miser number from that show, featuring Michael McKean as Snow Miser and Harvey Fierstein as Heat Miser. I’m amused that they took full advantage of live action and changed the backup singers from dumpy clay men to scantily clad young women:

But wait, there’s more. Apparently the “Heat Miser/Snow Miser” song is so beloved that choral groups enjoy performing it during the holidays, and you can find a bunch of these on YouTube. I like the Snow Miser in this 2007 performance from the Columbus Gay Men’s Chorus (be patient and he’ll show up):

And then there’s this one from the Philadelphia Men’s Chorus in 2009 — the narrator is hard to hear and therefore a bit annoying, but the performances are enjoyable:

Are you sick of this yet? Because I’m saving the best one for last. But first, if you prefer those beefy horns over the singing in this number, you’ll probably like the U.S. Navy’s Seventh Fleet Band, with the video footage from the TV show above them:

I got a little tired of the song after listening to dozens of versions, but I wondered why no one had thought of it as a male/female duet instead of two brothers. There’s a lot of possibility there. And apparently a morning deejay in New Hampshire thought so too — Greg Kretschmar, performing the song in a very much family-unfriendly way with Liz Armano as Lady Heat Miser. (I liked the idea of “Mistress Heat Miser” better, but no one else seems to have tried that one yet.)

I’d tell you to feel free to share your own audio or video versions of this song, but at this point I’m ready to take a break and go listen to A Charlie Brown Christmas instead. On the other hand, wouldn’t an a cappella version of “Heat Miser/Snow Miser” be great? Are The Bobs still around?