Holiday tunes, loved and hated

Holiday tunes, loved and hated

There are 38 comments on the Chicago Tribune story from Dec 17, 2007, titled Holiday tunes, loved and hated. In it, Chicago Tribune reports that:

Playing the right Christmas song isn't just a matter of whether you'll tick off Aunt Harriet or send Grandpa covering his ears and fleeing into the snow.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Chicago Tribune.

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Evanston, IL

#21 Dec 18, 2007
Little Drummer Boy is the worst song ever.

United States

#25 Dec 18, 2007
Dave wrote:
Best parody song? Allen Sherman's "Green Christmas."
Agreed, except Stan Freberg did "Green Christmas." Allan Sherman did "The Twelve Gifts of Christmas":

"... my true love gave to me, a Japanese transistor radio -- and it comes in a real leatherette case with holes in it, so you can listen right through the case ..."
Cherie Lyon

Des Plaines, IL

#26 Dec 18, 2007
How about the Hallelujah Chorus? One of my very favorites. Also,'I'll Be Home For Christmas' sung by (almost) anyone.
A very few people know 'Joseph's Song' by Michael Card, but it's totally worth hearing.
Cherie Lyon

Des Plaines, IL

#27 Dec 18, 2007
Far Northsider wrote:
The WORST Christmas song still remains Paul McCartney's Simply Having a Wonderful Christmas Time
Oh YEAH, that's one I try every year to FORGET it exists!

United States

#28 Dec 18, 2007
Can't stand 'Jingle Bell Rock,' but love 'The Christmas Song' by both Nat King Cole and Mel Torme. But really, Tis the Season for Los Straitjackets is an excellent Christmas album!

Bloomington, IN

#29 Dec 18, 2007
ANY version of 12 Days of Christmas would top my Worst list.
I loathe The Little Drummer Boy, and at first I thought your Best list was the Worst list for including this song.

Pop in the Charlie Brown Chirstmas Soundtrack... let it's jazzy version of O Christmas Tree wash over you - that's as good as Christmas music gets.

Chicago, IL

#30 Dec 18, 2007
Now wait, there's "good" Christmas music, and then there's "fun" Christmas music, which is cheesetastic (to borrow Jack's term) but enjoyable:

Charlie Brown Christmas soundtrack

All those beautiful carols sung by excellent choirs

Nat King Cole's Christmas album (before Natalie meddled with it)

Mariah Carey 'All I Want'- OK. I can't stand her, usually, but this song makes me dance every time.
Paul McCartney 'Simply Having'- yes, if I was a music critic, I'd probably tear it to shreds. But it's fun.

Feliz Navidad

I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas

And no one's mentioned the "Rusty Chevrolet" song (Rust and smoke, the heater's broke, etc - or is this just a rural favorite?)

There are two kinds of singing: those who sing well, and those who sing loudly. I like both at Christmas time.:-)

Lemont, IL

#31 Dec 18, 2007
While I agree with the assessment of most of the tunes identified here (I dislike them as well), there are a few things that are far worse but get little airplay. One is the Cyndi Lauper Christmas CD. I bought it for a joke, but couldn't pretend to like it for a single listen. The other is the Johnny Cash Christmas CD. While I typically like the guy's music, Christmas songs shouldn't evoke suicidal thoughts.

Wilmington, NC

#32 Dec 18, 2007
Go Tell It On the Mountain by James Taylor is great.
Oh Puhleeze

Mount Wolf, PA

#33 Dec 18, 2007
How can you leave out Donnie Hathoway's "This Christmas" from the favorites list?

And what about "Feliz Navidad". I don't know most of the words, but its always fun faking it.

Chicago, IL

#34 Dec 18, 2007
I like "Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer". Maybe the lyrics get a little tiresome the 40th time you hear it, but the tune is fun and the musicians play well.

Chicago, IL

#35 Dec 18, 2007
Bing Crosby and David Bowie's version of "Little Drummer Boy" should be on the favorite's list.
jpd in nola

New Orleans, LA

#36 Dec 18, 2007
Perhaps not your standard Christmas songs, but two of my favorites are:

1) 2000 Miles by the Pretenders and 2) New Year's Day by U2

Duarte, CA

#37 Dec 18, 2007
There are quite a few annoying songs out there, but none tops "I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas." It doesn't make any sense, and the kid singer is terribly irritating.

Also on my list are Madonna's "Santa Baby" - even she probably finds it grating today - and the one about the kid's shoes. I have no idea who sings it or what it's exactly about, but it's unbelievably cheesey.

Among my favorites that didn't get mentioned is the "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen/Good King Wenceslas" medly by the Bare Naked Ladies and Sarah McLachlan.
Life-long Episcopalian

United States

#38 Dec 18, 2007
JohnD wrote:
If I have to hear "chestnuts roasting on an open fire" one more time, I'm gonna be sick.
Does anyone really roast chestnuts over an open fire any more? For that matter, does anyone roast chestnuts at all? For that matter, does a majority of people on the planet even have a clue as to what a chestnut is?
What we need is a few more new Christmas parody songs. How about some title ideas, folks? I'll start:
"Buy me Diamonds for Christmas (Or I'll Divorce You)"
How about, " JOHN D needs an enema"

Oh holy night dude, lighten up !

Saint Paul, MN

#39 Dec 18, 2007
To get you thinking: how about "Mary Did You Know?" by Mark Lowry.

For fun I like "Frosty the Bluesman". Don't know who first recorded it, but I'm partial to the Denver and the Mile High Orchestra rendition.

And then there's anything by Manhattan Transfer or the Modern Jazz Quartet.


United States

#40 Dec 18, 2007
Three cheers to all who loathe Sir Paul's "Wonderful Christmastime" and the Chipmunk Song! Others I could do without: "Last Christmas" (Wham), most Streisand-ized holiday tunes, and (for being played incessantly), "The Most Wonderful Time of the Year," "Holly Jolly Christmas," "Sleigh Ride," "Winter Wonderland," "Let it Snow," and "Baby It's Cold Outside." PLEASE... NO MORE!!!!

United States

#41 Dec 18, 2007
Merry Christmas Darling,the Carpenters

Oh Holy Night

I'll Be Home for Christmas

Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer
Gene Autry

Frosty the Snowman, The Beach Boys
Little Saint Nick, The Beach Boys

I'm Gettin' Nuttin' For Christmas
(cause all that I've been is bad)

Generally agreed: Santa Baby is terrible, BY ANYBODY. Then it gets even worse when Heidi Klum "sings" it on that TV ad. Tone deaf ?
(Definitely not bad to look at though.)

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