Monday, November 29, 2004

Christmas songs I love to hate

The Christmas tunes started in the radio stations a little earlier this year. On the whole, I object to this. Not because I’m upset that Christmas starts too early, or that Thanksgiving pretty much becomes little more than a pre-Christmas. No, I don’t have any problem with that. I mean, Christmas is a time of kindness, giving, and sharing. I say, let’s get that party started in January!

No, the reason I dislike 24/7 Christmas music on the radio is that, by and large, I can’t stand most of the Christmas music they play.

Again, I truly love Christmas Carols. I love to sing them in Church. I love to hear the choirs singing them. I love it when music reminds me of what I’m celebrating. It really touches me.

But I Hate (notice the capital “H”) most of the insipid pop Christmas tunes that get mixed in with the good stuff. And even the term “mixed in” is relative. Often it’s more like an occasional good one mixed in with a string of annoyances. For me, anyway. Your mileage may vary.

Here’s my big list:

1. “Santa Baby”

Is it possible to pour more sleaze into an icon of childhood? Gimme a break! I remember this was performed once at a church party. Please!

2. “Jingle Bell Rock”

This little swing number is definitely NOT rock. For those that might be questioning, let me clarify: It is NOT rock. Not even close. It IS, however, cheesy. Just for the record…

3. “White Christmas”

I actually like this one. As a song. But by now, even only a few days after Thanksgiving, I’m already sick of it. Great tune, done to death. Give it a well-deserved rest.

4. Bruce Springsteen’s “Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town”

Another one that deserves retirement. I liked it the first year it came out. The first couple of hundred times the first year that it came out. Hang it up, Bruce. It’s done…

5. “Silver Bells”

This one and “Chestnuts Roasting” are great examples of maudlin syrup that just sends me screaming into the frosty air. Which leads me to…

6. Anything sung like a lounge singer

That covers most of the rest. But wait, there’s more!

7. 90% of the soft jazz versions of Christmas songs.

I’ll admit that once in a while, one comes along that has a clever or fresh arrangement. Most don’t. Sleeping pills, almost all of them.

8. Christ-centered Christmas songs sung by people who live sleazy

OK, now I’m getting a little judgmental, but I get sick of hearing about how this or that celeb spends their year drugging and sleazing their way through life, then tries to be all spiritual at Christmas time. It just doesn’t come across very sincere. It’s like their contract requires a Christmas album, so they’ll sing about the Savior, but they really don’t believe it.

And not that anyone has to be pure. I mean that’s what the season’s really all about, right? But when you can see that someone’s really trying to keep their life in tune with The Lord, and they sing about Him, then you can feel it. And I like to listen to it then.

So, I know I've probably made someone mad by singling out their favorite. Which songs do you choke down each holiday season?

Mark Hansen


  1. A-freaking-men, bro.

    (I have to admit to liking "Christmas Rapping." What a bass line!)

  2. I couldn't agree more on the most part. I do love 'White Christmas' though - but only sung by Bing Crosby. I like a lot of his christmas stuff. I like Band Aid - Feed the World too (original 1984 version) I like the sentiment and the fact it raised a lot of money for people who really need it.My ultimate pull the hair out one though is Mariah Carey - All I Want For Christmas. (or anything by her really!)
    A local radio station that I usually listen to - mostly easy listening stuff - is playing christmas songs 24/7 which is a little too much even for me, a great lover of Christmas.

  3. I actually don't like Manheim Steamroller. A lot of people(including my wife) really think it's cool, but it just bugs the crap out of me.

  4. >so they’ll sing about the Savior, but they really don’t believe it.

    Yeah, that's kind of like award ceremonies... "I'd like to thank God for this.." (while they stand there in a hoochie mama thread of a dress and return to sit with their out on bail for drug possession boyfriend).

    I'm not a fan of "I saw mommy kissing santa claus".

    But, I have to say my favorite non-hymn Christmas song is "Christmas Time Again" by Extreme. It's on "A very special Christmas 2" and it is fantastic. The message, the music, everything.

  5. Jim in Houston12/18/07, 9:13 AM

    Boils down to the fact that CHRISTmas is a time (although incorrect) to celebrate the birth of the Savior. We have forgotten this. I love Christmas songs about the Savior. or about the season. I must admit however, I love White Christmas by Bing Crosby. I would remind everyone that both of the major Satelite companies have an LDS music station.



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