The buildup is often more intense than the actual day, and we can't avoid it any longer, even if we wanted to—it's Christmas. And while we get the temptation to bur oneself under the warmest pile of blankets they can find, you're gonna have to do stuff. Your family will make you. Jeeze.
But fear not, for your closest friends at SFR have distilled the week into a veritable cornucopia of Christmassy events. Just check 'em off like a list and it'll be 2018 before you know it.
For the kiddos, try the Holiday Tree and Train Display at the First National Bank of Santa Fe (9:30 am-noon daily through Dec. 29, excepting Dec. 24 and 25. Free. 62 Lincoln Ave., 219-3007). We know a bank isn't usually a place to go for fun things, yet this is happening. On Dec. 22, pop by The Farmers Market Pavilion between 10 am and 4 pm for the Holiday Railyard Artisan Market (1607 Paseo de Peralta, 983-7226). If ever there were a place for last-possible-minute gifts, this is it. Later that evening at 5:30 pm, visit the Chancel Bell Choir of the First Presbyterian Church for all those belled-out Christmas jams you know and love (Free. 208 Grant Ave., 982-8544)—you know the ones. The Santa Fe Playhouse also hosts a very X-mas-ish show, Seasoned Greetings, at 7:30 pm ($15-$25. 142 E De Vargas St., 988-4262).
On Saturday Dec. 23, things become even more holiday-centric, if you can believe it, with The Upstart Crows' staged reading of Dickens' A Christmas Carol at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation (5 pm. Free. 107 W Barcelona Road, 982-9674). Ghosts are good teachers for kids, we promise. It'll be tight, but you can also probably hit Teatro Paraguas for Holiday Flamenco: The Little Match Girl (7 pm. $20-$25. 3205 Calle Marie, 424-1601). Now that's thinking outside the box. Mostly.
For the late-night set, Vanilla Pop brings their super-smooth and dancey cover versions of beloved pop jams at The Palace Saloon (10 pm. $10. 142 W Palace Ave., 428-0690). And, finally, Boxcar brings the dub, house and electro jam-a-lams to X-mas Eve with Eclecticos on Sunday Dec. 24 at 9 pm. (Free. 530 S Guadalupe St., 988-7222). Drinking and dancing are obviously what you'll need at this point.
You're on your own for the big day. Good luck, and may you get cool gifts instead of boring crap you'd never possibly want in a million years. (Alex De Vore)
Where else might one expect to dance their asses off than at Meow Wolf during the holidays? Indeed, the beloved artists' collective knows their DJs and can prove it, this time with Sounds Like Primal, a gathering of killer underground types such as Portland, Oregon-based deck masters saQi (funky-fresh electro floor fillers) and Tiger Fresh (which we thought was a magazine aimed at teens but turned out to be bass-y dance jams). If reports we've been given about the spiritual nature of electronic music ring true, this oughta be a night to remember. Plus, there's all those neon lights, so … (ADV)
Sounds Like Primal:
7 pm Friday Dec. 22. $20-$25.
152 Rufina Circle,
Yes, It’s a Mononoke Reference
We were sorely tempted to put this one in the big fat list of Christmas things above, but a coming-together of local musicians of this caliber most certainly deserves some highlighting of its own. See, when Jeremy Bleich (bass), Milton Villarubia (drums) and Robert Muller (keys) join forces to play some of that sweet, sweet Vince Guaraldi Charlie Brown Christmas music—plus jazzy takes on other popular holiday tunes—it's worth it alone to show up and see how they'll arrange them. In other words, these dudes is talented. It's also become a bit of a Christmas tradition at Second Street Brewery, and the perfect answer for those who've yet to get into the spirit of things. (ADV)
6 pm Saturday Dec. 23. Free.
Second Street Brewery (Original),
1814 Second Street,
It’s a Trevor Bahnson X-mas Eve
Some of us recall Trevor Bahnson from his days shredding with metal act Seventh Circle, while others only recently made his acquaintance with freak folk act Whiskerman (see music, page 34). There are even those who fondly recall the gorgeous three-part harmonies of his California-based band, Song Preservation Society. But if there's one thing we've always known about Bahnson, it's that he's talented as hell and a singer-songwriter set with his new performance partner Zoë Winter on one of the most festive nights of the year might even be a little too glorious. Think Devendra Banhart meets Bob Dylan, but more complex than either with drop-dead gorgeous vocal harmonies. This makes the Cowgirl a perfect location and a must-see for anyone who is able. (ADV)
Trevor Bahnson and Zoë Winter:
8 pm Sunday Dec. 24. Free.
319 S Guadalupe St.,
We did it, everyone! We made it through one of the weirdest years in human history, and it's bound to look up after this, right? Y'know, it actually might not. The president is still … who he is and the FCC seemingly has no problems ignoring the vast majority of the American public.
But there is solace in the doing of things, and if ever there were a night to try and forget one's troubles, this is it. And we know that New Year's Eve falls on a Sunday, which makes really going for it kind of hard, but try on some of these events for size. We'll see you next year.
Earlier in the day, Key Frances Band hits the Mine Shaft Tavern in Madrid (2 pm. Free. 2846 Hwy. 14, 473-074) with bluesy jams just sad enough to be realistic without wallowing. That's a good start. And you can fully make it back to Santa Fe in time for the Santa Fe Crooners belting out the hits of yesteryear at the Palace Saloon (5 pm. Free. 142 W. Palace Ave., 428-0690). The later it gets, the more your choices expand exponentially, with Meow Wolf's Subulnar NYE featuring Worthy and other DJs (7 pm. $30-$40. Shellaberger Tennis Center, 1600 St. Michael's Drive, 395-6369)—an event that went down last year with different live music and was pretty insane for party fans.
Bodies, Sex Headaches and Cult Tourist punk the hell out of Second Street Brewery's Rufina Taproom (9 pm. Free. 2920 Rufina St., 954-1068) and the Plaza hosts a family-friendly night with Alex Maryol, Fun Addix, hot chocolate and more (9 pm. Free. 100 Old Santa Fe Trail). Of course, there's plenty more to do all over town, just make sure you do it all safely and ride Uber or whatever. And remember, everyone—chins up; the way things are now can't stay this way forever. Happy 2018, y'all! (ADV)
More Like Sagga-Riffik!
Some people don't love having to see everyone they know around this time of the year, and others really love it. We fall someplace in between, but we do know this: Boxcar is a killer place for hanging out with your homies who've come to visit. Any night'll do, but for these explicit purposes, might we recommend an evening with DJ Saggaliffik and his house, electronica, hip-hop and reggaeton? Dude's been at it forever and knows how to get the party started. All you have to worry about is the free cover and great drinks and, if you're up for it, them chicken strips. (ADV)
10 pm Wednesday Dec. 27. Free.
530 S Guadalupe St.,
Fat of the Land
We love when Duel Brewing hosts music, because it's usually something unexpected and is most often good. Take, for example, El Paso, Texas' Fat Camp. This trio has risen to prominence of late thanks to a stint on Spotify's "Fresh Finds" playlist, and from what we've heard, they're no flash in the pan. Catchy isn't quite strong enough a term as shades of bands like The Breeders, Rivers Cuomo and even early-Beatles sneak up and make a home inside one's brain. They're lo-fi, they're fun as hell, they're worth it. Fans of doo-wop and punk take note—we've found a fabulous intersection for all y'all and we wouldn't be surprised if this band became huge. (ADV)
7 pm Friday Dec. 29. Free.
1228 Parkway Drive,