Our beloved Pete is out on the scene at the Rocket From The Crypt show in Long Beach tonight, but like the true friend he is, he sent me a few texts:
All true! This is seriously how the masterminds behind this blog work.
Tonight I’m going to the Vandals Christmas Formal, a tradition of mine for the past several years. In 1996 The Vandals released a Christmas album, Oi to the World!, on their fledgling indie label Kung Fu Records They’d just launched the label earlier that year, thus pressings of the album were limited and it remained relatively obscure; in interviews, when asked “What’s one thing about the Vandals that most of your fans don’t know?” they’d often respond “That we have a Christmas record”.
The band spent much of 1997 opening for No Doubt on their Tragic Kingdom world tour, playing the album’s title track in their set each night. When No Doubt was asked to contribute a track to A Very Special Christmas 3 (the 1997 installment of a compilation series benefiting the Special Olympics), they decided to cover the Vandals’ song since they’d been hearing it every night. Their version was produced by Vandals guitarist Warren Fitzgerald, and with the success of Tragic Kingdom their cover of the song received mainstream exposure and was made into a music video.
Kung Fu Records re-released Oi to the World! in 2000, giving it new artwork and adding an overture at the end as well as a new intro to the title track; this is the version used in the clip below. As a bonus I’ve included No Doubt’s “Oi to the World” music video. The song became a regular part of the Vandals’ setlist, but otherwise tracks from Oi to the World! were rarely performed live except at their Christmas Formal concerts, an annual tradition in Anaheim at which the band plays the album in its entirety. They haven’t toured or performed much in recent years, so the Christmas Formals are pretty much the only opportunity to see the band and generally sell out.