2007: A HEAVY MENTAL CHRISTMAS
The idea for this album came about when I was in Montreal playing a gig and I had gone out for a bite to eat with Mitch Lafon of the online webzine Brave Words & Bloody Knuckles or BW&BK. During our conversation Mitch told me that the Twisted Sister Christmas album had nearly gone double platinum. Once I heard that I knew I had to make a Helix Christmas album. Besides, Lynda and I LOVE Christmas. Our house, Planet Helix, was renowned for Lynda’s over the top Christmas decorations and our “formal dress ONLY” Christmas parties. When I was a kid growing up on my grandfather’s country & crooner albums one of my favorite was the Bing Cosby Christmas album.
All this was happening around the time that I was working with Gord Prior and Steve Georgakopoulos. In fact, we had just released POWER OF ROCK AND ROLL . When bounced the idea of a Helix rock and roll Christmas album off Gord he loved it! We set about to choose the tunes and even wrote one ourself: Christmas Time Is Here Again. The album was recorded in August at the “A” Room in London with Aaron Murray twiddling the knobs and Gord producing. This disc was really the brain child of Gord; he put a lot of himself into this project and the arrangements and a lot of the vocal approaches were his ideas.
After we finished recording the album Gord managed to get us a distribution deal in Wal-mart Stores across Canada with Fontana Records, a subsidiary of Universal Records. The CD did very well for us. A couple of years later Sean Kelly and I wrote another Christmas song: All I Want For Christmas Is The Leafs To Win The Cup-a great song if I do say so myself. My idea was to release the song to radio and play a Helix Christmas tour with a set comprised almost entirely of the Christmas album and All I Want For Christmas Is The Leafs To Win The Cup.
I worked with Lynda all year long putting the show together and we booked 8 dates throughout Southern Ontario. Well…it didn’t snow until the last date and the NHL went on strike! Needless to say, the tour flubbed. But this is still one of my favorite Helix CDs… Eventually I’d like to release it on vinyl with the Leaf song added (and perhaps a couple more Christmas songs).
Players on this CD:
Steve Georgakopoulos: Guitar
Rick Van Dyk: Guitar
Paul Fonsenca: Bass
Brent Niemi: Drums
Brian Vollmer: Vocals
Additional background vocals: Gord Prior/Doug Weir