An upbeat, Happy Holiday song, fun for the whole family, from The Lat-keys and writer/producer Rick S. Rose.
Answers from Rick S. Rose, Producer/lead singer, “The Lat-keys”, “Chanukah Claus”
Rick S. Rose is an award-winning writer/singer/producer who has made successful recordings for CBS and Capitol Records, among others. He produced and is singing lead on the holiday song, “Chanukah Claus” by the Lat-Keys.
What inspired you to record a holiday song?
Especially this year, with covid, I wanted to supply some upbeat, loving energy, and “Chanukah Claus” has that. It’s not about the denomination, it’s about the spirit of optimism, of the love and happiness this time of year brings, for everyone. We need it this year more than ever.
In your opinion, what is the all-time best holiday song?
“White Christmas”. And Bing Crosby singing it, of course. Such a beautiful song, and such a beautiful voice. It captures the spirit of the holidays, the memories of times with those we love perfectly. Interesting to note it came out in 1942, during WWII. As we fight our own war against covid, it really resonates.
Do you believe in Santa?
Of course! I believe in Santa Claus and I believe in Chanukah Claus. I believe! And that is the beauty of the holidays. A time to remember our inner child, to be optimistic, to believe in the good times, that we had them, have them and more are coming. And they are!
What are your fondest musical memories associated with the holiday season?
We would have a big family party this time of year, and I remember as a little boy playing violin with my uncle (who was a fantastic violin player), my other uncle on piano, and my mom, dad, and aunts singing. Great times.
Have you been naughty or nice this year?
Why do you ask? Did somebody say something? I deny it! Oh, okay, maybe I was a little naughty. Just a little. You have to be a little naughty, don’t you?
How has Covid altered your holiday plans?
Like most, we won’t be able to be in person with many we love. But we will see them (Zoom), speak to them, and of course, have them in our thoughts. No reason we can’t cherish the holidays even more this year, and make up for the sacrifices next year.
What message do you want people to hear when they listen to your song?
That no matter how old you get, no matter how hard life is, don’t forget that child inside you that is always looking out the window for a new surprise, a new friend, a new place to go. Be happy, be optimistic, know that good things and discoveries are still waiting for you. This time of year reminds us of that, and I hope this song is a happy reminder of that. Be happy!
What is your fondest holiday memory as a kid?
When I was nine, I was asked to sing “Little Drummer Boy” for my school. My first solo. My mom was there (she’s gone now). I felt a wonderful togetherness with everyone there. A very special day, that can only happen this time of year.
What do you enjoy more? Receiving gifts or giving them?
Giving, of course. The giver always gets as much or more than those he/she gives to. In high school, I played the “Ghosts” (past, present, future) in Dickens’ “Christmas Carol”. The message of redemption and learned generosity has always remained with me, how Scrooge is really reborn when he learns to give to others. My friend Jake McRawlings has a great song about the joy of giving called, “Children’s Christmas Wish”. (https://music.apple.com/us/album/childrens-christmas-wish-single/1288832098)
What are you looking forward to in 2021?
Of course, a return to normal life after we beat back this virus. The making of some great music. And then I hope for the same things I hope for every year. Peace. Justice. The end of hunger. Happiness for everyone in the world. I still believe “Peace on Earth” can be a reality, call me crazy. I wrote a song about that called, “A New Year’s Wish”. (https://www.amazon.com/A-New-Years-Wish/dp/B017BH6TFY)