So apparently there are games in the blogosphere that involve "tagging" other bloggers so they are obligated to write about certain things. Generally, I ignore these silly exercises, but today Terry had one on her blog that is a reindeer game I'll happily play. Because it's about music and Christmas! Tagged bloggers are supposed to list their five favorite Christmas songs, but I can't limit myself to that few. So if you would, please indulge my slightly lengthy list of favorite holiday melodies.
1. Christmas (Baby, Please Come Home). David Letterman calls this the greatest rock and roll Christmas song ever written, and I have to agree. I'll take the original Darlene Love recording or U2's 1987 version; both make me happy. What a shame Phil Spector is now crazy and on trial for murder.
2. You're A Mean One, Mr. Grinch. If you aren't affected by Dr. Seuss's How The Grinch Stole Christmas, then clearly your heart is three sizes too small. And hearing Tony the Tiger croon this song throughout the cartoon special makes my heart about ten sizes bigger.
3. Do You Hear What I Hear. The Bing Crosby version, thank you very much. You may think it's cheesy, but I call this Rat Pack-era Holiday Goodness. Besides, we sang it in my high school chorus, giving it a soft spot in my heart.
4. Christmas Wrapping. Is it wrong that I get a little choked up when the heroine of this song hooks up with the guy she's "been chasing all year" on Christmas Eve? It's enough to remind you just how good 80's new wave really is. Rest in peace, Patty Donahue.
5. Do They Know It's Christmas. As far as I know, there is never snow in Africa at Christmas time... a holiday season the majority of Ethiopians don't even celebrate. However, I give Bob Geldof and Midge Ure credit not only for raising money to help fight starvation there, but for actually writing a decent song to do so. Very much unlike the insufferable "We Are the World."
6. Sleigh Ride. Another one from my high school chorus days. It's a super fun carolling song, and I have learned over the years that people are very impressed when you know all the words.
7. Happy Xmas, War Is Over. All I have to say is: thank you, John and Yoko.
8. Little Drummer Boy/Peace on Earth. Bing makes another appearance on this list, and this time he's paired with David Bowie. I had no interest in "Little Drummer Boy" until I heard this version.
9. 2000 Miles. Another one that has been known to choke me up a little bit. What is it with 80's bands and their holiday songs?
10. Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas. Only as sung by Judy Garland in Meet Me in St. Louis. The version people sing now has lyrics that are just slightly different from the original, but to me, the alteration is completely egregious. The modern lyrics wouldn't even make Margaret O'Brien mist up, let alone cry.
11. Christmas Time Is Here. Talk about choked up. Don't even tell me you don't want to cry when Linus talks about the true meaning of Christmas. With Vince Guaraldi in the background, there's not a dry eye across the country when Charlie Brown's annual television special airs.
I'll probably think of about ten other songs I love as soon as I publish this post. For example, at this moment I am loving "O Holy Night" because of a scene they just did featuring New Orleans musicians on Studio 60. Yes, the scene made me cry. It's true, I'm a complete sap and proud of it.