Gravy Day
December 21, 2017 2:55 PM   Subscribe

December 21st is Gravy Day - an unlikely Christmas song by Paul Kelly.

Includes Paul Kelly doing a live version of the song.
posted by freethefeet (12 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Gravy is good. More to the point up here in Maine, today officially is Chester Greenwood Day – in honor of the inventor of earmuffs.
posted by LeLiLo at 3:51 PM on December 21, 2017 [1 favorite]

December 21st is also the Winter Solstice (Longest Night of the Year in the Northern Hemisphere, Longest Day in the Southern), "Blue Christmas" (pre-dating Elvis), Crossword Puzzle Day, semi-annual Global Orgasm Day (also on June 21st), the day they predicted the end of the world in 2012 (has it been five years? are we sure it DIDN'T happen?), International Dalek Day (the anniversary of their first appearance on Doctor Who in 1963) and the disputed National Hamburger Day (some claim that it should be the day in July, 1900, when the first hamburger sandwich was served by a diner... ut at Metafilter, EVERY Day is Hamburger Day).

It's a day. Put gravy on a hamburger and feed it to a dalek.
posted by oneswellfoop at 4:33 PM on December 21, 2017

"How to Make Gravy" used to be the go-to crying song for Australians missing their families at Christmas, but that's now been replaced by the cheerier "White Wine in the Sun."
posted by retrograde at 5:26 PM on December 21, 2017 [4 favorites]

Oh also, here's a nice "classic" clip of Paul Kelly playing the song on "Recovery" in 1996 that just popped up on my Facebook feed.
posted by retrograde at 5:50 PM on December 21, 2017

If Aussies can still get it on iview, the recent ABC Paul Kelly concert broadcast from the Opera House steps is an absolute treasure.
posted by chiquitita at 6:21 PM on December 21, 2017 [1 favorite]

Thanks retrograde, that's a favourite. Here's Brisbane artist Kate Miller-Heidke performing White Wine in the Sun.

ABC radio has sort of ruined How To Make Gravy for me. They overplay it, especially at this time of year.
posted by adept256 at 7:43 PM on December 21, 2017 [4 favorites]

Saw PK play it last March and called my 16yro so she could hear it too, cause I had talked to her about how we should see him together, and she was cranky work held her back.
It is one of those songs that cuts across generations and is evocative of time lost , or never existed in many listeners time.
We have always had family Xmases with Mum & Dad and whoever flying in or making the drive. But we have never pushed the tables back to dance to Junior Murray , but I can taste exactly how it feels on a hot sweaty night when everyone has had a few beers, and some hatchets have been buried and a few unearthed.

It is the longing of something imperfect when you haven't even got that.

White wine in the sun is a great accompanying track for all who have had that Xmas far from home, but it doesn't hit the same space of involuntary separation.

In any case, I haven't heard it called gravy day before this year, and I am worried that spells imminent popular rejection of a nice song me and my daughter (and brother in law) all put on with a bit more emotion than most xmas music.

Tomorrow I'll drive 3 hours with kids in tow to have a big feast with my wife's family, and we will very much live out our version of "joe's" remembered xmas. I'll be a little more grateful for it thanks to Paul Kelly reminding me through a bit of nakedly emotive music that it could all be snatched away.
posted by bystander at 10:17 PM on December 21, 2017 [4 favorites]

"Sometimes I got into trouble for that recipe; every now and then a foodie comes up to me and says, 'you don't put tomato sauce in gravy'," he said.

And whatever happened to Joe? Did he ever get out of prison on good behaviour?

"He seems to be like the character in some of my other songs; he's a bit like the guy in To Her Door.
posted by Thella at 10:27 PM on December 21, 2017

(Yes- embarrassingly after hitting post I realised that the song is called "How to Make Gravy" not Gravy Day. Oops. In my defence, I've been listening to, as 'bell music' at work for the last month: Carol of the bells, Feliz Navidad, Mariah Carey's All I want for Christmas, How to Make Gravy, and a heavy rotation of Tim Minchin's white wine in the sun (this has definitely been overplayed.) )
posted by freethefeet at 1:57 AM on December 22, 2017

This gravy song is new to me. I like White Wine in the Sun, though. But my brother and a sister passed this year, joining my Dad and my Gran and my Mum, and now for the first time I'm hearing it and experiencing "drinking white wine in the sun" as a metaphor for death.

Conclusion: not a BAD vision of an afterlife.

posted by Nancy_LockIsLit_Palmer at 10:41 AM on December 22, 2017

Looks like I missed Gravy Day. Oh well, there's always next year.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 3:14 PM on December 22, 2017 [1 favorite]

He's obviously in prison for putting tomato sauce in gravy.
posted by adept256 at 10:44 PM on December 22, 2017

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