Friday, December 10, 2010

Tis the season for bad pop Christmas songs

One of my favorite Christmastime activities is belting out Christmas songs--specifically Silver Bells--in the car with my little sister, Colleen. I like it because 1) it is firmly within my vocal range so I can sing it really loudly, and 2) because Colleen is and excellent singer. This means the sum of our voices actually sounds good. Unfortunately, this year I won't be able to sing with her because she is on study abroad in Spain.

Colleen is also one of our most dedicated readers. To date we have had 52 hits from Caceres Spain, and only 14 from Ypsilanti. In return for her loyalty, she asked me to dedicate a post to her. This brings be to my second point: terrible Christmas pop songs.

In addition to some wonderful Christmas carols, this time of year, we find ourselves surrounded by some truly... unique seasonal songs from popular artists. I'm not sure what compels pop musicians to write Christmas songs. Maybe it's a love of the season. Whatever the cause, come December we end up with a wide variance in the quality of pop Christmas songs gracing the airwaves. There are the diamonds in the rough: John and Yoko's Happy Xmas (War is Over). But for every good pop Christmas song, you find a Christmastime by The Smashing Pumpkins, a Do They Know It's Christmas? by Band Aid, or God forbid, a Christmas Tree by a young Lady Gaga.

So I ask you, gentle reader, what is your favorite pop Christmas song? What do you think the best or worst pop Christmas songs are?

In conclusion, Colleen I dedicate this song to you: Jimmy Eat World's cover of Last Christmas by Wham!:

Note: the band in the video is not Jimmy Eat World.


  1. It's money. They are motivated by money.

  2. I've got to say the worst is one of two songs:

    John Lennon & Yoko Ono: Happy Christmas (War Is Over) (gotta love Lennon, but man those Ono choruses are regrettable)


  3. I nominate the entire Hanson, Snowed In album- for best and worst.

  4. Are y'all really going to overlook the sap bukakke that is "Christmas Shoes"?

    Name another Christmas song that is so bad it has its own comedy bit about it.

    (I very well may be playing on or even writing these songs in a decade).

  5. This begs the question Chris, are you writing Christmas songs now in Austin?

  6. It's in the upper-60s to mid-70s every day, so it hasn't even dawned on me that it's Christmas yet. More importantly, are you having a Christmas party this year?

  7. This is the first year I've ever heard "Where are you Christmas?" by Faith Hill: it sounds like it was composed for a Hallmark made-for-tv movie.

  8. Erin, thank you for making my point: "Christmas Shoes" actually was composed for a made-for-tv movie starring Rob Lowe!