Decking the Halls with Jingle Bells and Silver Bells : A Look at Christmas Carols
Love it or hate it, it’s hard to flip through the radio stations, enter any store, or make it through any commercial without hearing Christmas music this time of year. We’re wishing you a Merry Christmas, harkening the herald angels, and telling it on the mountain…..and don’t forget the bells that are jingling incessantly throughout the season (especially if you have a child, and this is the only song they know..) So, today’s post is an ode to the songs we love, and the songs we love to hate.
I’m married to a music pastor, so we begin listening to Christmas music in the summer…Needless to say, I have definitely come to utterly loathe a few carols, and have absolutely fallen in love with several others. Today we’ll take a look at the good, the bad, and the funny of Christmas carols.
Let’s be a Scrooge and start with the uh…less than favorable carols of the season….If these carols were people, you’d definitely want to avoid them around the mistletoe…Yes, these are the songs I’d be happy to let the Grinch come and steal. Here we go..
The Ugly Sweaters
1. Baby It’s Cold Outside : AKA- The Holiday Date Rape Song. Seriously….this song is terrible. You have a woman letting her date know she needs to go home, and he assures her that she’ll turn into a popsicle if she leaves his love nest, and then slips a little something into her drink…This has Dateline NBC written all over it…(And what woman would ever use the phrase, “Lend me a comb???”)
2. The 12 Days of Christmas: True love? Really?! Giving a woman a truckload of birds and house-guests is NOT true love. She is going to have to hock all of the golden rings to have enough money to buy groceries for all of the people that now take up residence in her house….I mean, they can’t live on eggs and pears forever…(Really, this song is just long and repetitive, and it drives me nuts. Truth be told, if you know why it was written (to help children remember their catechisms, each day standing for something spiritually significant) it becomes slightly more tolerable…However, it makes me want to rip my ears off.)
3. My Favorite Things: No offense to Julie Andrews or the Von Trapp children…The hills fill my heart with the sound of music too…HOWEVER, the words “snowflakes”, “silver white winters” and “sleighbells” do NOT make this a Christmas song. I’d honestly rather hear “How do you solve a problem like Maria.” The only comparison I can liken this to is how my husband claims “Die Hard” is a Christmas movie because the song “Let it Snow” is in it…(not falling for that either btw,)
4. Santa Baby: If I haven’t ripped my ears off yet by the time I’ve heard The 12 Days of Christmas, I’m SURE to when this musical atrocity comes on….What exactly is the appeal to listening to a gold-digging woman ask Santa for let’s see, the deed to a home, a convertible, a yacht, a duplex, checks, and of course…a ring…My advice, RUN AWAY SANTA. Listen to Kanye….(Only, I AM sayin’ she a gold-digger.)
5. All I Want for Christmas are my Two Front Teeth: I can tolerate a lot…I mean, I wore out The New Kids on the Block Christmas cassette I had…but, seriously….the version they play of this song drives me up a tree…Do kids really sit around striving to say, “Sister Susie Sitting on a Thistle” in the first place? Do kids even know what a thistle is?? I’ve heard children without their front teeth say Merry Christmas plenty of times…and none of their voices turned into nails on a chalkboard in quite the same way as the children they’ve chosen to sing and record this song with…Oh gosh, oh gee, how happy I’d be, if I could only throw this song away. =)
Other contenders for awful songs include: Dominic the Donkey, I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus, and Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer
The Little Black Dresses (The Carols that will NEVER go out of Style)
1. Oh Holy Night: My husband made me a promise when we got married that he would sing this for me every year at Christmas at church. We’ve been married for 8 years, and I’ve gotten my song every year. This is my absolute favorite Christmas song…so reverent…beautiful…love it.
2. Oh Come, Oh Come Emmanuel: My other favorite Christmas song…The choir at church did this during our Singing Christmas Tree this year, and it made me cry both times I heard it…If you’ve never experienced some of the more religious carols….find a big choir at Christmas-time…Wow…This song is so deeply meaningful, and can still be true today…asking the Lord to come…and rejoicing that He did so many years ago…
3. Just about anything by Burl Ives, Bing Crosby, or the songs from Merry Christmas Charlie Brown. =) (Seriously, could any music be more romantic than a scratchy old record-player version of Let it Snow, or White Christmas?!)
Trend Setters (Christmas CD’s to check out!!)
1. Michael Buble Christmas – I seriously LOVE this album…LOVE it! (I can even forgive him for singing Santa Baby..)
2. Harry Connick Jr. When My Heart Finds Christmas – Could be our favorite Christmas cd (and we have literally hundreds plus all our itunes..) We DID name a child after this man, so I can’t recommend this enough..Favorite Tracks, Title Track, (It Must Have Been Ol’) Santa Claus, and I Pray on Christmas. Jazzy fun Christmas songs with some old classics thrown in too!
3. A Very She and Him Christmas- Love this! If you’re a fan of Zooey Deschanel, you’ll want to check out her new Christmas release…Very fun and jazzy…twists on some classics..
4. Glee: The Music , The Christmas Album (Volumes 1 and 2) : If you’re a fan of the show, or just great Christmas music, you’ll enjoy these. Super fun and upbeat.
The Fruitcakes ( song lyrics)
1. Wouldn’t decking your halls with actual boughs of holly really HURT? Holly is very poky (and poisonous!)
2. Does ANYONE actually eat figgy pudding? And why exactly would you give some to someone DEMANDING it?!
3. I wonder how people would react now-a-days if people drinking “wassail” just came down the streets singing loudly and joyfully for all to hear…wishing love and joy to you….
4. Anyone else ever felt bad for babies under 1, and adults over 92? Don’t they deserve a merry Christmas too?
Whatever your age, and whatever your opinion on Christmas carols, I want to wish YOU a very Merry Christmas!!! Feel free to post with your favorites and not-so favorites!!