How to Make Gravy – Baptist News Global
The sad songs that are popular at Christmas are not sad enough. Sinatras Have yourself a merry little Christmas pretends to be sad, but Frank promises that “next year all our troubles will be miles away,” and Frank usually got what he wanted.
Darlene Loves Christmas baby please come home meant to be heartbreaking, but it’s way too much fun to sing.
With Mariah Carey All I want for Christmas is youthe Queen of Christmas seems pretty sure she’ll get what she wants for Christmas.
Sometimes we need a song It’s Not So Cheerful So I Have A New Favorite Christmas Carol And Soon You Will Too. In 1996, Paul Kelly was asked to contribute a Christmas carol to a charity album. The Australian songwriter didn’t go the traditional route. his carol, How to make sauceIt has no chorus and is set in prison.
“His Christmas carol has no chorus and is set in prison.”
Here’s how: On December 21st, Joe, who has just gone to jail, sends his brother a tearful letter telling Dan how much he will miss the family Christmas party. Joe tries to be hopeful: “If I behave well, I’ll be out of here by July.”
He asks Dan to “kiss my kids on Christmas Day. Please don’t make them cry for me.” He wants them to remember who he is, not what he did. This is the point in the song where anyone with a heart begins to cry.
Joe imagines the family reunion, “The brothers come here from Queensland. Stella is from the coast.’ There is no white Christmas in Australia. “It’ll be a hundred degrees, maybe even more,” but they’ll cook a roast anyway, because that’s what they do at Christmas.
Joe worries no one will know how to make the sauce, so he adds instructions: “Just add flour, salt and some red wine. And don’t forget a dollop of tomato sauce for sweetness and zing.” The sauce recipe in the middle of the song is real. Kelly got it from his father-in-law.
Joe apologizes to “Angus and Frank and Dolly. Tell them all I’m sorry. I screwed it up this time.” He hopes Mary’s new boyfriend is better than the last one, who was so clueless that he “didn’t get Nina Simone.” He sings that he’s “even going to miss Roger because there ain’t a fuckin’ nobody here I wanna fight”. Joe plans to “pray to baby Jesus” and “miss all the treasure and the junk” this Christmas.
More than anything, Joe worries about Rita. He will “think of her on Christmas morning”. Dan is allowed to dance with Rita, but: “Don’t hold her too close. You know I love her very much. She’s the one who’s going to save me.”
Click here and feel sad not only for Joe but also for Dan, Rita and the kids. Smell the roast, feel the heat and hear the hearts break.
The lyrics are sad enough, but a video from 2021 includes people lip-synching the words while holding up signs for the one they miss:
I miss you dad
I miss you mom
Miss you from 13,533 kilometers away
To my family in Dublin I miss you but not the rain
204 days since I saw you
Christmas is never the same without you
Mum misses you making gravy
The lip sync are parents missing their kids, kids missing their parents, kids missing parents they’ve never met, people hugging kids for those who can’t, chefs making gravy with extra dollops of tomato sauce, and a guy singing in front of a church. Several wipe tears from their eyes.
How to make sauce is the No. 1 Christmas song in Australia according to a survey and nominated for “Song of the Year”. Spotify has two dozen covers of How to make sauce. Australians celebrate the quasi-national holiday Gravy Day on December 21st. Paul Kelly continued a Ted Talk How to make sauce. A movie based on How to make sauce should be out next December.
The happiest version comes from 2,800 singers and the Queensland Chamber Orchestra. They gathered at City Hall in Brisbane to sing three-part harmonies with such love that it makes you cry, laugh and smile.
The last lines promise joy on the other side of pain:
I’ll make some sauce.
I will taste the fat.
Tell her I’m sorry.
Yes, I love her very much.
Tell ’em all I’m sorry
and kiss the sleepy children for me.
You know one of those days
i will make sauce
I will do a lot.
I will pay them all back.
We gotta believe Joe got out on good behavior. We have to hope he has a roast in the oven for Christmas. He’s going to put a dollop of tomato sauce in a huge portion of gravy. Mary will have another new friend. This one will be smart enough to get Nina Simone. After dinner, Joe will dance with Rita, up close. Dan, Stella and the kids will laugh because there is joy beyond sadness. Joe will pray to Jesus and say thank you.
board younger serves as senior pastor at Plymouth Church in Brooklyn, NY
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