It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas… Trees are going up, mince pies are being munched (ok, that’s been happening for a little while now) and we’ve got the Busted Christmas special on repeat (“That’s a bit dirty!”), but some people have been in the festive spirit for a while now, and those people are People On Vacation – AKA Jaret Reddick and Ryan Hamilton.
The musically dynamic duo have been working on a holiday album, so we caught up with them to chat all things Christmas.
You guys have finished recording your holiday album now, but did you do anything to get into the festive spirit while you were working on it?
Jaret: It’s actually super weird recording Christmas albums, because it always seems like you are doing it during warmer months and Christmas seems so far away. But we managed to make it happen – and rather quickly. The Thanksgiving holiday helps in the states, and also after Halloween all the shops are lit up and ready for Christmas, so I guess we waited long enough to at least feel the vibe. Plus, Ryan recorded dressed as an elf.
Ryan: [Sarcastically] I love that elf costume. I’d wear it everyday if I could.
What inspired you to write a festive album?
Jaret: It was a whim. We were finishing up our new album “The Summer and The Fall” and had just recorded a few covers for the internet and I said to Ryan, we should do a Kickstarter and just do a quick holiday album.We had done two songs last year that and had a blast doing them. The original idea was for this to be acoustic and simple, but we ended up getting a little crazy!
Ryan: Yeah, it was definitely a spur of the moment decision. What the hell does “spur of the moment” even mean? Have you ever thought about that? Where did that saying come from? Why am I even saying it?… Anyway, yeah, it was done on a whim. The Kickstarter got funded so fast, and went so far over our original goal, not only were we extra inspired to do the Holiday album, we got the opportunity to really go for it.
Do you have a favourite track?
Jaret: It is so hard… They are all so new. We wrote and recorded this thing in like four days, so each time I hear one I am like, “that’s the jam”. I think the big surprise is the song called “What would be your Christmas wish”. We did a Kickstarter to fund this album and one of the rewards was to have your name and Christmas wish in a song. You really never know how these things are gonna turn out, and whether people not mentioned in the song will even care about the track, but man, this one turned out amazing. It is so catchy and there is a sweetness to it because we are talking about real people. Really proud of that one!
Ryan: I hear what Jaret’s saying, and I could definitely do the “I love them all” thing – because I do – but my favourite song on this album is “Something About Christmas”. Kay Hanley (Letters To Cleo) joined us on that one, and there’s just something extra special about it. Definitely my favourite song on the album… but I love them all!
What’s your favourite Christmas song of all time?
Jaret: “Frosty The Snowman”. It is also my “go to” whistle song. If I am whistling, no matter the time of year, I am whistling Frosty.
Ryan: Oh. My. God. HE WHISTLES THAT SONG ALL THE TIME! Drives me crazy… and somehow makes me happy at the same time [laughs]. My favourite Christmas song of all time has to be “White Christmas”. That tune always makes me smile, and also has this super sweet, warm Christmas-y vibe that makes it feel like the Holidays.
What is your favourite Christmas tradition?
Jaret: The whole mistletoe thing… I like making out/snogging with strangers.
Ryan: Trying to tell when my Mom is all-the-way Christmas drunk on Christmas Eve.
Do you prefer hanging the baubles or stuffing the turkey?
Jaret: I will let Ryan answer this one…
Ryan: Ok, I gotta be honest… I don’t know what “baubles” are [laughs]… and for the sake of this interview, I’m not going to Google it! Is that some UK slang? I’m so confused! So, I’m going to go with stuffing the turkey… but not in the euphemism way, the actual, edible, real live turkey way.
What have you asked Santa for this year?
Jaret: A new robe and slippers, and money to get my elbows tattooed.
Ryan: The new Noel Gallagher Live DVD. A Noel Gallagher t-shirt. Noel Gallagher vinyl… I’ll stop there. A Rolling Stones t-shirt for my dog, Peaches… and a life size figurine of E.T. for my bedroom, complete with glowing heart.
Logic aside and money no object – what would you buy each other for Christmas?
Jaret: That is hard… Ryan appreciates the little things like no one I have ever known, and he is thoughtful as fuck when it comes to gift giving… I would probably buy Ryan a new car. His last car broke down in front of my house more than a few times. While fixing it, he lost some of my tools. I like my tools. I would get Ryan a new car so I can hang on to my tools… and because he deserves to ride around in style.
Ryan: Aww. He’s so nice… yet hilarious. I guess my answer should be: I’d get Jaret some new tools [laughs]. For the record, I did not lose any of your tools. I got them dirty… but I’m pretty positive your son is to blame for the losing of the tools. That’s right, I’m blaming your six-year-old son, because he did it! He might be seven now… either way, he’s a thief and I’m obviously an angel. Seriously though, if I could get Jaret anything, I’d get him a full time assistant that would keep up with all the eight million things Jaret has going on. You know, answer his emails, tell him how good his hair looks, etc. I’d get him that, and a Frank Turner house concert… which he would have to let me attend.
What would you give us for Christmas?
Jaret: You should all own the fun. album. It is the best album of the year. Every household should have it!
Ryan: You guys are the best! I’d get you all pyjamas… with feet. Footie pyjamas. Holiday themed, onesie, footie pyjamas. You’re welcome.
You have given your fans the gift of your album The Summer And The Fall – are you getting a good response?
Jaret: Unbelievable response, kind of overwhelming to be honest.
Ryan: Yeah, it’s been incredible. It just came out, and I already can’t seem to really process the insanity of the response. It’s too much! It makes me feel like the luckiest man alive. So proud of that album, and so happy it’s finally out.
For more information on People On Vacation, and to pick up their albums for your Christmas stocking (go on, you’re on Santa’s nice list, we checked), click here.
To find out how many days there are until Christmas, click here.