So how do I know that Christmas is here? Three reasons: 1) Because it’s the 8th of November and two nights ago I went to a party here in Los Angeles and all the streets in the downtown theater district were mind-numbingly crowded with lines of people in their best holiday reds, greens and sparkles waiting desperately to be ushered into Mariah Carey’s Christmas Concert. I guess it’s never too early to get started. Especially if you’re Mariah Carey and people are dying to hear your holiday tunes even though they’ve still got Halloween decorations up. So then I decide to take a look at the various places where people buy music (fortunately nowadays you don’t have to go anywhere to do this because it’s all about the clicking) and I stumble on the second reason why I know the holidays are at hand: 2) Susan Boyle’s new album, appropriately entitled The Gift is out this week. Now, I happen to think Susan’s voice is pretty otherwordly. She owns and transforms songs in a genuinely novel and lovely way — and her holiday fare reflects this (I don’t imagine she’ll have any trouble with this album’s sales.) I have to say though, that I was quite surprised with/startled by her first video – or rather the song selection in her first video. The tune is called Perfect Day and it was written by Lou Reed who might not have been my first choice had I been asked to hand pick tracks for Ms. Boyle to cover. Who thought this was such a great idea? In fact, I’m a little dubious about the video itself, where she sings her heart out against a backdrop of what I can only imagine are stunning Scottish lochs and moors. The creepy song is in no way helped by the whole Harry Potter effect they’re going for, with poor Susan standing at the end of a dock in a long robe, arms outstretched while she cautions some unseen guy that “you’re gonna reap just what you sow“. The whole thing is bizarre to say the least, and I’m not sure why they didn’t make a video using one of her holiday songs. Or even her cover of Don’t Dream It’s Over by Crowded House which just plain feels more appropriate for her. I know the gal’s popular; I just don’t understand why they’d give her (and then film her singing) that particular song on a holiday album. But let’s move on because the third reason I know the holidays are approaching is this: 3) tomorrow the PCA Nominees will be announced live from Los Angeles at our annual Press Conference. The wait is over, and the world’s about to find out who YOU chose to make the cut for PCA Nominee status (and yours truly will be providing updates and reports throughout the press conference). We will have any number of stars on hand like PCA host Queen Latifah along with executive producer Mark Burnett, plus Malin Akerman, Michael Chiklis, Zachary Levi , AnnaLynne McCord, Audrina Patridge & Jeff Probst. We’ll get going first thing tomorrow morning (Pacific Time) so be sure to check back to this site if you want to know which stars the People have chosen for that next level – and of course we find out the winners on January 5th, 2011. That means there’s quite a lot to look forward to, although you might want to go check out Susan Boyle’s new video first, and give us your opinion on what I think is a curious pairing of talent and song.
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