Today is December the 23rd or Christmas Eve’s Eve, and no matter how I try, I can’t seem to feel the Christmas spirit. Perhaps it might be a good idea to listen to some Christmas songs and see if that helps? This year you may have heard of an online social media contest for the song, Last Christmas by Wham. The trick is to avoid hearing the song for as long as possible. So far, I haven’t been Whammed but Last Christmas is up there with my favourite all time Christmas Songs. Here are a few more that I might have a listen to later with a glass of sherry.
Technically this is not a single song but a full album. I first heard this album from 1963 when I was teaching ballet in my early twenties. I love the Phil Spector Wall of Sound – the name given to the music production formula he used. This album was originally released on the day that JFK was shot and so it didn’t do that well. However, now it is seen as a classic. The songs on the album include Frosty the Snowman, I saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus and Silent Night.
This song takes me back to Boulogne in 1989. I was also a huge fan of the late Kirsty MacColl, who sadly died far too young at forty-one. The song was written by The Pogues and features Kirsty and Shane McGowan. There have been so many programmes telling the story of the song but for me the song conjures up memories of the first Christmas I spent abroad in France. We experienced a French Christmas, eating a huge banquet that began at about five on Christmas Eve, with a brief interlude for Midnight Mass and then finished at about five in the morning of Christmas Day with a very strong shot of vodka that made the veins in my neck literally stick out and beat far too fast.
I hated this when it first came out in the Seventies. It just seemed so old-fashioned. Now I love it and I think it is up there with some of the best songs. I remember my Garndad Straw telling me how his dad had been shocked by the way in which Bing Crosby sang. I also thought my Grandad looked a lot like Bing Crosby and one year, I bought this record on picture disc for him.
This reminds me of the year it came out in 1980. It was my first year at Nottingham High School For Girls and that Christmas I remember being so tired as I also had a ballet scholarship and spent pretty much all my time at school or at ballet. I always thought this song went to the top spot of number one in the charts but it only reached number three.
I love Bublé. His voice seems to capture the feel of so many Christmas celebrations. I was introduced to him by my friend Derek in about 2002 as my friend had spent a long time in Canada. I have seen him in concert many times. The last time, I even shook his hand.
If I had to pick my all-time favourite Christmas song, then this would be it. It’s so smooth and festive that it almost brings a tear to the eye. It also has the most beautiful imagery of all songs with an open-fire and tiny tots with their eyes all aglow, will find it hard to sleep tonight.
One last post tomorrow for Christmas Eve.
Wherever you are and whoever you are with, I hope you have a wonderful Christmas!