You know it’s getting near Christmas when you start getting bombarded with seasonal music. The last few years you barely get out of Halloween and Jingle Bells is suddenly in your face. Don’t get me wrong, I love Christmas. Maybe not as much as I did when the holiday was still a bit of a fantasy in the unencumbered mind of a tot, but still – as far as holidays go, Christmas is tops.
Yesterday I heard, I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas by Gayla Peavy, and it got me thinking about bad Christmas music. Not that the Hippo song is bad. It’s got just the perfect dose of cheese to keep it off the worst of list. So that’s what this blog is going to be about – the worst Christmas songs ever.
I started doing a little research. A lot of people have put a lot of thought into this topic. You can find dozens of such lists around the internet; they are as varied as the music on them. Apparently, the topic is so subjective, very little similarity can be found from one list to the next, with a few remarkably bad exceptions. Those get global recognition as really, really, bad Christmas songs. Here they are in no particular order.
- Do They Know It’s Christmas – Band Aid (1984)
Even the songwriter, Bob Geldof, thinks this is one of the worst songs ever. The song was presented at the Band-Aid concert to raise money in hopes of stopping the famine in Ethiopia. Participants was a who’s-who of eighties rock including Boy George, Phil Collins, Sting, Duran Duran, Paul McCartney, Spandau Ballet and others.
- Please Daddy (Don’t get drunk this Christmas) – John Denver (1975)
Let’s see- Daddy’s drunk, Mama’s crying. Yeah, that about sums up this gem from John Denver, the perennial sob story from Roswell, New Mexico. You can find this on his Rocky Mountain Christmas album. The question is: Why would you even be searching?
- The Christmas Shoes – Newsong (2000)
We’ve all heard the story. A man stands in a checkout line. In front of him, a young boy, poorly dressed and sad-eyed. And in his hands, a pair of women’s shoes. When the cashier rings up the shoes, he tells the boy the price, and you can see by the look on his face, he doesn’t have enough money. The boy tells the cashier he just wants to buy the shoes for his dying mother. He turns and asks the man in line behind him for help. He says that his family is poor and they are just trying to make this a good Christmas for his mom. The man pays for the shoes and finally learns the true meaning of Christmas. With lyrics like: “It’s Christmas Eve, and these shoes are just her size … And I want her to look beautiful–if Mama meets Jesus tonight,” this ballad graces pretty much every worst of list I saw. I just seem to think that, if I was on the verge of dying – a new pair of shoes would be the last thing on my mind.
There are several others, but these three were standouts on everyone’s list. For dishonorable mention, I’d have to add:
Christmas Wrapping – The Waitresses
Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer – Elmo & Patsy
Christmastime – Smashing Pumpkins
Christmas Conga – Cyndi Lauper
And any Christmas song by chipmonks, dogs, birds, seals, dolphins,
or washed up rock stars such as:
Can you add any to the list?