What makes a good Christmas song? by Kate S. Martin

Hello everybody! Today, I have a post from Kate Martin to share with you, about why we love Christmas songs generally and her personal favourites. Onto the post!

What is it that makes a song become an all-time festive classic? You know? The tune which never fails to make you smile even whilst you’re grappling with the Sellotape and shouting at the children to get their heads out of the fridge and not to touch the Christmas cheese. How have the likes of Last Christmas, Fairy-tale of New York, and All I Want for Christmas is You become loved by so many around the world? Is it George Michael’s festive knitwear? Shane MacGowan’s insulting lyrics? Or seeing Mariah Carey in a snug Santa outfit?

The Pogues (one of my personal favourites) would have us all believe a great Christmas song needs to be a four-minute narrative about drink, gambling, despair, and heartbreak. Esther Williams and Ricardo Montalban’s Baby It’s Cold Outside achieved great success whilst also prompting an important discussion about taking no for an answer! I can’t help but smile at Chris Rea’s Driving Home for Christmas, even if it brings back memories of being stuck in standstill traffic on the M60, yes Chris you are right, it is ‘going to take some time’. East 17 knew that white snow suits, ski goggles, harmonies and sleigh bells would secure adoration in their classic Stay Another Day. There are also festive tunes that become synonymous with our favourite festive films. Home Alone can take credit for showcasing the joy of Rocking Around the Christmas tree, as it reminds me of Macaulay Culkin dancing with a life size cardboard cut-out of Michael Jordan to scare away the two hapless burglars.

I asked my friends what their favourite Christmas tune was, and it was nothing to do with the lyrics or the knitwear, it was unanimously the nostalgia associated with it. A friend loves Oh Holy Night because it brings back precious memories of her dad laughing at the tarantula scene in Home Alone. Another puts Twelve Days of Christmas at the top of her list, because she would sit at the piano with her family singing various combinations of swans dancing or geese milking. She carries on this tradition with her own children now. Another adores Jingle Bells because her young daughter used to get all the words wrong and now the only version sung in their house is their own unique remix.

I think Christmas songs can get away with any lyrics, costumes, or musical accompaniment because it’s all about the memories you create with your loved ones around the festive period. Keep making those memories and the songs will be there to stay in your head for years to come.

My top three Christmas songs:

1. The Pogues.

Yep! Shane and Kirsty’s break-up makes me feel all jolly and festive too. Christmas has officially started when I hear ‘in the drunk tank’.

2. Jingle Bell Rock.

My son’s favourite Christmas song. It’s the one he always asks to play, and I can’t help but smile when I see him dancing away in the kitchen.

3. Silent Night.

My mum adored all the carols at Christmas time. This one, especially the version by the Winchester Cathedral Choir, gives me all the feels. There’s something about the haunting and beautiful sounds of carols that makes my bottom lip wobble a little.

Thank you so much for reading! Have you read Kate’s, or are you like me and have it on your TBR? What are your favourite Christmas songs? I’d love to chat in the comments!

Speak very soon,

Amy xxx


Author: goldenbooksgirl

Disabled book blogger who also writes TV, film, music and other posts from time to time | UKYABA Champion Teen 2018 | Email: goldenbooksgirl@gmail.com | she/her

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