Is One Halfway Decent Thanksgiving Pop Song Too Much to Ask For?


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Poi Dog Pondering, "Thanksgiving": Via Hawaii and Chicago, these Austin rockers could do funk just as well as folk, and were on the verge of breaking big in the early '90s; "Jack Ass Ginger" is still a great tune. "Thanksgiving," from 1989's Wishing Like a Mountain and Thinking Like the Sea, isn't bad (if a little earnest), but it's not the great Thanksgiving song either.


Mary Gauthier, "Thanksgiving": The Louisiana-born Gauthier is a wonderful songwriter, but her "Thanksgiving" is set at her home state's Tallulah State Prison. Next!


Ray Davies, "Thanksgiving Day": Even the dependably razor-witted Kinks founder isn't much help in the face of Thanksgiving. This song from his 2006 disc Other People's Lives is populated by lonely drifters and people far from home until it finally yields to Hallmark sentimentality. Ick.


Loudon Wainwright III, "Thanksgiving": OK, this one isn't half bad. Lucy, Rufus and Martha's dad says grace before Thanksgiving dinner, dreading the meal that is to come: "Remind us that we are all grown-up adults, no longer children/ Now it's our kids that spill the milk, and our turn to want to kill them."


So we'll end on a (relatively) high note. But finally, there is also a songwriter in Portland who has released several Pavementesque albums of lo-fi indie-rock under the name Thanksgiving. Can we go back to grandma's house now?






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