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A Missive Of Christmas Unity From Mina Alali
Everyone has questions. In 1897 little Virginia once asked the editors of The New York Sun newspaper if there really was a Santa Claus. They replied that there was. Led Zeppelin singer Robert Plant while vamping on their 1971 hit Stairway to Heaven during a vocal ad-lib in the 1976 film The Song Remains the Same wondered if anybody remembered laughter. Gauging from the rousing cheers in response from the audience at that recorded Madison Square Garden concert they apparently did. So where are we going with all of this? That’s an excellent question.
Fast forward to 2016 and to a college girl who’s just released a newly recorded Christmas song she’s written with her friends called What I Want. In the song she cites a Santa that does slide down chimneys, although laments that what he brings and what’s under the Christmas tree is not what she’s wishing for Christmas. What Mina Alali wants for Christmas is what she feels we’re missing most theses days and is not wrapped in glitter and gold and adorned with a bow. It is unity, peace, calm, and a sign of hope.
After our recent presidential election, which has left our nation as un-united and divided as any civil war in our past, she suggests that now is the perfect time to put this division behind us and to heal. To push aside the dark clouds we’ve been carrying above us and return to some simple holiday pleasures. Like singing carols together (even if sometimes we’re all not in key), enjoying the yuletide lights and decorations that surround us, baking Christmas cookies, or sending out and receiving holiday cards.
Prior to releasing What I Want, Mina had an album out earlier in the year titled “22 Cents Less” which addressed the issue many women face of graduating college and working in a job market where women traditionally receive less pay than the men on the job. Alali appears to be an artist that undoubtedly brings to the table some food for thought with her work.
Now back to Robert Plant’s query about laughter. What stood out to me the most when I watched her What I Want music video was not only the ease and honesty of her performance, as well as the sheer joy of singing that the camera captures, but also the candid shots of her laughing while working with her colleagues in the recording studio. So yes, little Bobbie Plant, in 2016 we still do remember laughter.