BATTLE OF THE BANDS: “Jingle Bell Rock”


Wow, next week is Christmas. I can hardly believe it. They say the year moves faster as you get older, but this whole century so far has been turbocharged or something. Anyway, I hope no one has already picked this one up. If so, sorry.

“Jingle Bell Rock,” Wikipedia tells us, “was composed by Joseph Carleton Beal (1900–1967) and James Ross Boothe (1917–1976). Beal was a Massachusetts-born public relations professional and longtime resident of South Ocean Avenue in Atlantic City, New Jersey, and Boothe was a Texan writer in the advertising business.” The best-known version of this is the one by country singer Bobby Helms, who recorded it in 1957. It was his biggest Top 40 hit; he also had hits with “Fraulein” and “My Special Angel” on the country charts the same year.

There have been a lot of covers of this song, which is why I’m not that woried if others have done this as a battle in the past, or this time, for that matter. I chose two instrumental versions of the song, done in two different styles.

CONTESTANT #1: Los Straitjackets

My current favorite surf band, Los Straitjackets, did the song for their 2002 Christmas album, ‘Tis The Season For Los Straitjackets!

CONTESTANT #2: Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass

Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass were huge in the 1960’s. Their version appeared on their 1968 Christmas Album, their eleventh release.

Now, it’s your turn…

Which one of these versions really snapped your socks, as Mary used to say? The neo-surf styling of Los Straitjackets, or the Hispanic style produced by the TJB? Cast your vte in the comments below, and I’ll report on the winner in this Sunday’s The Week That Was post.

Then, how’s about visiting the other folks who usually do Battles of the Bands, too?

Tossing It Out
Far Away Series
StMcC Presents Battle of the Bands
Your Daily Dose
Mike’s Ramblings
Curious as a Cathy
DC Relief – Battle of the Bands
This Belle Rocks
Book Lover
Alex J. Cavanaugh
Shady Dell Music & Memories
Debbie D. at The Doglady’s Den
Angels Bark
Jingle Jangle Jungle
Janie Junebug Righting and Editing
Cherdo on the Flipside
Holli’s Hoots ‘n’ Hollers
J. A. Scott
Quiet Laughter

Results Sunday! Good luck to Los Straitjackets and Herb alpert and the TJB!


Author: John Holton

I'm a writer and blogger who writes and blogs about things that interest me.

17 thoughts on “BATTLE OF THE BANDS: “Jingle Bell Rock””

  1. For a minute while list to the TJ Brass I thought I was on the Christmas version of The Dating Game. I’m a big Alpert fan and thought my vote would go to his merry band, but I thought this was a kind of schlocky take on Ray Coniff. Good, but no vote.

    My vote goes to Los Straitjackets. A lot more fun and energy in that version. Took me back to my days listening to The Ventures.

    Arlee Bird
    Tossing It Out


  2. Hey, this is a great one! Two very different versions of a holiday classic. I’d be lying if I didn’t admit I like both but this morning, I totally dig Los Straitjackets and they get my vote for this battle.

    Thank you and the Merriest of Christmases to you and yours!


  3. Hi John! I’m most familiar with HA & TJB, but I really enjoyed the upbeat tempo of CONTESTANT #1: Los Straitjackets. Give my vote to them.


  4. I know the Herb Albert version is one that I would have heard visiting my Aunt’s and Uncle’s with the doilies on the furniture arm rests but I have to go for that one because In like the horn and it has a more Christmas ring to it despite the stripper ending. Los Straightjackets I would play at New Year’s and dance to! Herb gets my vote because it is what I would play more at Christmas


  5. OK, I genuinely liked BOTH recordings. But… despite the word “Rock” in the title, Los Straitjackets was a bit too much “Rock” for me. I liked it, I really did, however, when it comes to Christmas music, I’m more of a traditionalist. Plus, I really LOVE Herb & The Tijuana Brass, so they get my vote.

    This was a really well thought-out and arranged Battle, though.

    I also want to echo what Janie wrote: From everything I’ve ever read and heard, Herb Alpert is TRULY an A-list class act guy. And that is sadly, very, very rare in the entertainment industry. I hope I never run across anything that changes my mind about Mr. Alpert.

    ~ D-FensDogG
    ‘Loyal American Underground’


  6. Los Straitjackets get my vote. The Herb Alpert version sounded like it was recorded for a game show taking place at a burlesque show. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.
    Give my crazy vote to the Straightjackets.


  7. I really wanted to like The Straitjackets, just to be fair. But you know, Herb Alpert, and then Tiajuna Brass, together. No contest, Herb and the Brass gets my vote.


  8. Sorry I’m so late in arriving and voting. Life is INSANE.

    I really liked both of these. As you say, virtually no chance of someone else pitting these two versions against one another (high five).

    I find that I preferred Herb Albert and his TB. At least today. Maybe tomorrow I’ll feel more “surfer.”


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s