It’s that time of year when we are subjected to the usual crop of crappy Christmas songs. If you are forced to listen to top 40 radio it’s not the 12 days of Christmas, but the 12 songs of Christmas for 40 days.
While I enjoy Phil Spector’s Christmas album and some of the overplayed instrumentals, I can do without hearing that horrible version of Bruce Springsteen’s Santa Claus is Coming To Town.
I am sick of the novelty songs like Grandma getting killed by reindeer. Mice, donkeys and hippopotami are not Christmas to me.
In an attempt to stop the madness, I will give you 12 Christmas songs that are not overplayed, but fit the spirit of Christmas, while being great songs.
My Top 12:
12. Christmas Is Going To The Dogs – Eels – This one is very funny but not in the usual stupid way. Dog owners will relate.http://youtu.be/lqUKbP_9lNo
11. Get Behind Me Santa – Sufjan Stevens – Kind of too indy for me, but still it’s catchy and fun. It grew on me. The arrangements are nice and it makes me feel festive. Clever wordplay reminiscent of what Ray Davies did with Father Christmas. For that reason alone, it belongs on the list.http://youtu.be/2iQZLo3kUz8
10. Frosty The Snowman – Leon Redbone – The best version of this song, by a long shot. Featuring Dr. John. Two boozers singing about living snowmen is about as good as it gets. http://youtu.be/I97c_ixsS9Y
9. Devo – Merry Something To You – Those crazy guys from Akron came up with a politically correct “holiday” song, I think. Not sure what this is, but it’s ridiculous and fun. And it’s DeVo, so It’s on the list.http://youtu.be/rE-PYUG4dTc
8. Fairytale of New York – The Pogues – a beautiful song featuring the late Kirsty Macall. This is one that rarely gets played and I don’t know why.http://youtu.be/j9jbdgZidu8
7. Peace On Earth/Little Drummer Boy – Bing Crosby & David Bowie – This one gets played and everytime it does, I think. wow, it’s just so weird. Strangely, it works.http://youtu.be/ADbJLo4x-tk
6. Merry Christmas, I Don’t Wanna Fight Tonight – The Ramones – A classic that needs to be played on the radio every day. LOVE this one. A LOT. http://youtu.be/Xtc1DabD580
5. Stop The Cavalry – Jona Lewie – Somehow became a Christmas classic in the UK. It’s always fun to hear, even though I never hear it. http://youtu.be/-xu2iCOzKEw
4. Christmas Card From A Hooker In Minneapolis – Tom Waits – The title alone makes this one interesting enough to hear. It’s not what you think it might be. It’s actually a beautiful song.http://youtu.be/mxVo5mjK4eg
3. Run Run Rudolph – Dave Edmunds – A Chuck Berry classic covered by many artists. I like this version the best.http://youtu.be/u0KNMeLSGas
2. Father Christmas – The Kinks – This one gets a fair amount of airplay on rock radio. It’s typical of Ray Davies to find the problems associated with the holiday season. This is not one of my favorite Kinks songs, but it’s always fun to hear around the holidays. http://youtu.be/l-oVPVsCqs4
1. We Three Kings – The Roches – Maggie, Terry, and Suzy Roche are sisters with angelic voices, a dozen albums and a cult following. I loved their first album back in 1979, produced by Robert Fripp. It was folk music in the midst of the punk rock explosion and it somehow fit in. However, The Roches have one of the best Christmas albums you never heard. It was a staple in my house when my daughter was growing up. It’s beautiful, classic and funny. Find this album and listen to it. It’s fabulous. The Roches still play Christmas concerts around NYC. I have never seen them, but would love to someday. http://youtu.be/qasM2QT5W14
I hope I have expanded your mind a little more than that spiked egg nog.
Merry Christmas To All !!!