Christmas Music Observations

Starting around Thanksgiving, some radio stations convert to 24/7 holiday music. So far this year, I’ve been absolutely inundated with Christmas songs, and I have some thoughts on a few of them:

Nothing wrong with Frosty the Snowman or the Beach Boys, when you judge the two independently of each other. But do you realize what a soggy hell the Beach Boys would be exposing Frosty the Snowman too if they invited him to hang out on a beach? I’m imagining Brian Wilson and Mike Love belting out Kokomo, looking around for Frosty while a giant puddle with a scarf and top hat accumulates behind them.

I heard a DJ introduce this one like so: “According to this song, all you need to do to make Mariah happy is show up!” Upon hearing this, Derek Jeter, Eminem, Puff Daddy, Mase, ODB, John Mayer, all four members of 112, all four members of Blackstreet, the ghost of Biggie Smalls, Fred Durst, Hall, Oates, the moustachioed Smothers Brother, and Jermaine Dupri all nodded wistfully.

How weird is it to realize that George Michael probably met the person this song is addressed to in a men’s room?

O HOLY NIGHT – Lionel Ritchie
This was a decent version of an old favorite, but I think Lionel forgot the words. Halfway through he kinda stuttered then just started singing, “You’re once…twice…three times, a savior.”

CHESTNUTS ROASTING ON AN OPEN FIRE – Luther Vandross/Michael Buble/Various
Two major points on this one:

1) This song is officially known as “The Christmas Song.” But who really knows it by that title? Just call it, “Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire.” That’s the line everybody remembers. No reason for you to be a dick about it. You’re not the definitive Christmas song, so labeling yourself as such is arrogant and incorrect. It’s the Chestnut Song….chestnuts, I tell you, chestnuts.

2) There’s a famous line that goes, “And so, I’m offering this simple phrase/For kids from 1-92.” So what they’re basically saying is, screw you if you’re 93 or an infant. This made me think of Luther Vandross and Michael Buble hosting a Christmas party, standing at the door welcoming countless number of young and old people. Then a 93 year old guy shuffles gingerly to the door in his walker with an infant strapped to his stomach, only to have Buble and Vandross stomp them out like Hall and Nash used to do to hapless members of WCW.

WHITE CHRISTMAS – Michael Bolton
Having Michael Bolton cover a Christmas song originally sung by Bing Crosby is like having a bunch of overweight midgets put on football pads and Giants uniforms and recreate David Tyree’s helmet catch.

Good songs to throw on if everyone at your holiday party is having a LITTLE too much fun. Everyone knows that John Lennon’s post-Beatles music was kind of a depressing (if not brilliant) buzz kill, but Do They Know It’s Christmas? is essentially the biggest names in 1980’s music combining for a melodic guilt trip. It would be like the cast of Glee dropping a single titled, “You Do Realize Those Christmas Cookies Your Stuffing in Your Fat Face Won’t Help End Genocide in Darfur, Right?”

SANTA BABY – Eartha Kitt
This is basically just a gold digger trying to bang Santa to get extra gifts. That’s kind of messed up, because she’s just taking gifts from other people. What if some poor little kid is sitting there without an XBox because Mrs. Claus doesn’t make Santa feel like a man anymore?

In high school and college, I worked at a movie theater. In 2000, the Jim Carrey Grinch came out, and this played over the end credits. For some reason, every showing was sold out that whole week, so cleaning up the theaters during the credits was like Hell On Earth. Every time I hear this song, all I can think about are half-eaten Twizzlers, half filled cups of soda, and booster seats filled with popcorn and kid vomit. Fittingly, this is also what most people think of when they think about the movie.


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