Holidays

The 12 Songs of Arizona Christmas: Four Calling Birds

Canary Studio is housed as part of the Gould Evans Office.
Canary Studio is housed as part of the Gould Evans Office. Bill Timmerman
click to enlarge Canary Studio is housed as part of the Gould Evans Office. - BILL TIMMERMAN
Canary Studio is housed as part of the Gould Evans Office.
Bill Timmerman
Welcome to another edition of the "The 12 Songs of Arizona Christmas," in which local stakeholders detail their most cherished holiday songs. Consider this a musical Advent calendar, where your "treat" is a better understanding of the interesting people and organizations from across the city and state.




Four Calling Birds

Melissa Alexander and Amanda Harper, Directors, Canary Studio





Canaries in a coal mine warn workers of the dangers of carbon monoxide. While not nearly as dire, the Phoenix-based Canary Studio heralds another warning: The old ways of doing business are tired and outdated. The studio combines graphic, branding, and interior design into one cohesive, highly sustainable model for a variety of businesses. Its clients include Arizona State University, Cat Cora, and WebPT. It's like a real canary, but for anything wasteful or uninspired.

MA: "We both had really nontraditional childhoods, apparently. It's hard for me to pick one song, but it's basically the whole Jackson 5 Christmas Album. I got that tape at one of those Christmas cookie exchanges, and I must have driven my parents mad playing it over and over. Michael Jackson singing 'I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus' has a totally different connotation now, but I love it when I hear it. It's the Christmas album in my mind."

AH: "I love anything Bing Crosby, like ‘White Christmas,’ but especially 'Mele Kalikimaka.' It's in that one scene in National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation, you know, that totally nontraditional scene. But we watch that movie every year after eating our big holiday meal. I usually fall asleep during it, but that's my tradition. It's just got to happen every year."

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Chris Coplan has been a professional writer since the 2010s, having started his professional career at Consequence of Sound. Since then, he's also been published with TIME, Complex, and other outlets. He lives in Central Phoenix with his fiancee, a dumb but lovable dog, and two bossy cats.
Contact: Chris Coplan