After the long drag that was 2020, rising country singer Cory Marks figures we all could use a holiday pick-me-up. He tells HL EXCLUSIVELY the inspiration behind his cover of ‘Jingle My Bells’ and what he wants most this Christmas.
“Given the way 2020 has been for all of us,” Cory Marks tells HollywoodLife, “I thought something energetic and fun is what we need this Christmas.” With that, the up-ad-has unwrapped “Jingle My Bells,” a raucous, rockin’ track that’s one part Clark Griswold, one part Cousin Eddie, and all fun. Cory’s take on The Tractor’s 1995 holiday tune – from their Have Yourselves A Tractors Christmas – captures his unique blend of Southern rock and outlaw country. HollywoodLife is happy to premiere the official lyric video, so y’all can sing along.
“Jingle My Bells” comes from Christmas With Better Noise Music, a holiday compilation from the Better Noise Music label. It also closes out a banner year for Cory. He released Who I Am earlier in 2020, a 13-track mission statement that also works as a perfect introduction to this refreshing new voice in country music. Who I Am also reflects Cory’s harder side. While growing up, the North Bay, Ontario native’s first love was rock – from Ozzy Osbourne to Deep Purple to Canadian legends Rush. A deep dive into his parents’ country records help Mark discover a love for classic country stars like Waylon Jennings and Merle Haggard. He never forgot his rock roots, and “Out In The Rain,” his duet with Lizzy Hale of the Halestorm, proves it. Now, can we get them to do an updated version of Bing Crosby and David Bowie’s “Little Drummer Boy?”
Cory chatted with HollywoodLife about “Jingle My Bells,” which song you should add to your Holiday playlist, and that one Christmas present he’ll never forget.
HollywoodLife: Why did you decide to cover this song?
Cory Marks: I remember hearing this song as a kid growing up around Christmas time, but the way Kevin produced it gave it a whole new feel with that upbeat tempo mixed between 90’s country and rock n roll. It was a lot of fun to record, and given the way 2020 has been for all of us, I thought something energetic and fun is what we need this Christmas. So, Jingle My Bells.
Many people remember that ‘one’ Christmas present that they got as a kid, something that sticks with them as the Christmas gift. Do you have a fond memory of a present you got when you were little?
I was very fortunate growing up and had some pretty amazing Christmases between time spent with family, friends, and some cool gifts over the years. I could talk about some cool things I’ve gotten between toy planes, hockey equipment, and new cymbals for my drums, but last year my girlfriend and parents pitched in together and got me this beautiful Riviera blue Gretsch G26 with a Bigsby that completely surprised me and had me in tears. It was pretty special!
Is there a holiday song out there that you think is criminally underrated?
“If We Make It Through December,” by Merle Haggard
Finally, if someone could get you something for Christmas this year – no matter the price or scope of the imagination – what would it be?
I would love for this whole world to get back to normal so I could get back on the road, tour, and perform for sold-out arenas around the world. That would be the best gift!