Thanksgiving is over and it’s officially December, which means department stores and Top 40 radio stations are now blasting cheesy Christmas music 24/7. For this week’s Music Monday, we’ve collected videos of the holiday songs that haunt our dreams every year, in the hopes that facing them now will make the rest of the season easier to bear.
Noted philosopher Kanye West teaches us that that which does not kill us only makes us stronger. That’s how I know that after today I am going to live forever. Today I endured a trial so horrible that nothing in this world could ever hope to match it. Today I scoured YouTube for covers of “Santa Baby.” I mean no disrespect to the memory of the great Eartha Kitt, but “Santa Baby” is the worst song in the entire world and everyone who covers it should be locked away in a special prison under the ocean forever.
There’s just something about the combination of sexualizing Santa Claus and the weird infantalizing baby talk lyrics that makes my skin crawl every time. Despite being cloying, weird, and relentlessly awful it’s been covered by just about every in modern history. Since Eartha Kitt unleashed this clunker on us way back in 1953 every living artist has taken a swing at it for some reason, from popstar Kylie Minogue to actress/bone demon Calista Flockhart. But the worst cover of all has to go to Michael Buble. It wasn’t enough for the would-be crooner to simply cover this song about a baby voiced sexpot seducing Santa for presents. Michael decided the he needed to bro it up a bit by changing it to “Santa Buddy.” It makes sense I guess, Michael Buble isn’t a young woman coyly plying her man for material possessions, he’s just a regular dude buttering up an older man in exchange for gifts and money. Nothing weird or questionable about that, right?
My husband actually thinks this is the most romantic songs of all time (which I don’t know how to take but hey, I love the guy) as well as it being his favorite Christmas song. I do not agree with him. But when I discovered Walk Off the Earth’s Gianni and Sarah had covered it, I knew that he and I would inevitably be watching it on nights where we’d had a few beers and we were feeling sentimental. So yeah, it’s like a compromise. That’s marriage folks!
Whoever it was that had the brilliant idea of combining “Alvin and the Chipmunks” and Christmas needs to be shot. Twice.
First off, all three of the chipmunks are annoying in and of themselves and if this were JUST a Christmas song it might actually be bearable. But oh no, you had to include David and Alvin’s schtick of dad-poorly-disciplining-his-disobidient-…pet? What the hell was even going on in that series?
Written and produced long before the social conscience-raising antics of the Columbine shooters — or most of the spate of mass murderers that have cropped up in the last couple decades — Weird Al’s once joyous ode to mass slaughter now has a slightly more ominous tone. As a kid, I had this song on repeat year-round. Now, I can’t not think about how chilling it would be if someone played this tune over a photo montage of victims from Aurora, Virginia Tech, Sandy Hook, etc … etc … etc …
So while this isn’t an outright bad Christmas song like the others submitted in this list, it’s one I wouldn’t play in public at Christmastime, lest art continue to influence life.
In 1853, English hymnwriter John Mason Neale wrote a Christmas carol based on Saint Wenceslaus I, Duke of Bohemia. As legend would have it, “Good King Wenceslas” braved the bitter cold and deep snow to give alms to a poor peasant on the Feast of Stephen, the day after Christmas. (Thank you, Wikipedia.) More than 130 years later, Mannheim Steamroller apparently listened to this beloved hymn and said, “Great song, totally love it, but you know what it needs? SYNTHESIZERS. AM I RIGHT?? ALL THE SYNTHESIZERS MWAHAHAHAHA!”
I’ll admit I’m kind of conflicted because this song transports me back to age five or six when Christmas was still magical and not the stressful, oh-so-adult event it is now. But seriously, what were we even thinking in the 80s?
Let’s get one thing straight here. I am exactly the kind of person who tricks people into watching The Sound of Music by telling them that we’re going to watch a WWII drama. I may have described this movie in the past as a thrilling tale about nuns fighting Nazis. I do skip that one really slow song in the middle where the old nun has a solo, but on the whole, I really do enjoy this movie. Yes, all three hours of it.
But I do not, repeat do not, understand why the rest of the world seems to have been tricked into thinking that this is a Christmas song. Do I enjoy hearing it on the radio in between earsplitting renditions of “I want a Hippopotamus” and “I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus,” yes. But that is interlaced with my sheer indignation that it’s playing at all.
Is it because she likes warm woolen mittens? Is it because she references brown paper packages tied up with string? I mean, to me that says get off the train right now, not Merry Christmas, but sure. Is it because snowflakes are melting on her nose and eyelashes? Who even knows. Whatever the reason, this song gets shuffled in along with “Santa Baby” and “Frosty the Snowman” and I will never for the life of me understand why.
Also, ten bucks says that “Let It Go” gets added to the inexplicable Christmas staple songs this year.
The vast majority of the Earth’s population will agree that this Christmas song is by far the weirdest. I am not part of the vast majority. I love this Christmas song to death. The drag queen singing trio, DWV, cannot be stopped when it comes to parodies. Thankfully, their Christmas song does not disappoint and is just as great — if not better than — their other songs.
I think if there’s one Christmas song that really speaks to me, it’s this one. I mean, the chorus says “get turnt up, it’s Christmas!” There is not a better sentence to describe me.
I refuse to listen to Christmas songs to find the one I hate the most. Instead, here’s Patton Oswalt talking about “Christmas Shoes.” NSFW, etc. I’m out.
What holiday music is hopelessly stuck in your head this week? Let us know in the comments!