Last week, I received a surprising call from the North Pole. Apparently Santa Claus has become a fan of my column and wanted some musical selections to play in his sleigh on the big night. "Anything but 'I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus', I was told. "Mrs. Claus always looks askance at him when they hear that one." The elf on the phone then asked if I would help with gift suggestions for those in the music industry, a task I was pleased to take on. Some of my suggestions follow, and I think you'll be able to tell who has been naughty and who has been nice this year.
The Strokes: A female co-lead singer. The Strokes are in a seemingly irreversible decline and desperately need to think outside the box. Ideally, Saint Nick would give drummer Fabrizio Moretti a time machine to prevent him from getting involved with career-killing Drew Barrymore, but Justin Long and Tom Green asked first. Pairing an airy female voice (think Feist) with the low droning of Julian Casablancas might alter the recipe and give this once-great band a second life. Note to Ke$ha: No need to apply for this position. You somehow got your audition and failed miserably. Yeesh.
Kanye West: A new girlfriend. It is, to say the least, an unsettling feeling to think of West and his years of nearly non-stop buffoonery and still have the thought, "He can do better."
John Mayer: A job as a guitarist in a band. Mayer is a talented musician, but his voice is atrocious and Hallmark thinks his lyrics are hokey and saccharine. Mayer could be a great lead guitarist and accompanying vocalist in a garage-blues band. In addition to putting his career on a new path, maybe being just a guy in a band will tamp down Mayer's massive ego and quell his penchant for douchebaggery.