So don’t get me wrong, I bloody love Christmas songs, I am one of the few people that doesn’t complain when I hear Michael Bublé in November. However, as you get older you start to listen to the lyrics of certain songs more clearly, and a few of them have become quite uncomfortable to hear on your office radio now you understand the subtext. This is my effective guide to the best and equally jolly alternatives to certain classics.
If you like ‘Baby it’s Cold outside’, why not try instead ‘I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus’?
It is incredibly unfortunate that one of the few duets of the Christmas period has such creepy lyrics like “hey what’s in this drink?” and “what’s the sense in hurting my pride?” Bleugh. Why not try instead ‘I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus’ by The Jackson Five? It’s got those classic Jackson vocals with much less lasciviousness, singing about mommy kissing Santa (aka. Dad) by the fireside. When I was younger I thought it was about the mum cheating on dad with Santa but I have since been proven wrong.
If you like ‘Do They Know it’s Christmas?’, why not try instead ‘Someday at Christmas’?
I’d have to dedicate a full extended-length piece to entirely cover all the issues with Band-Aid’s Christmas classic. The demeaning and ignorant lyricism from 1984 is pretty horrifying in a 2010s setting, so why they decided to remake it in 2014 I have no idea. Why not try instead ‘Someday at Christmas’ by Stevie Wonder? It’s truly a song about peace on earth, but without the patronising view of Africa. He sings “there’ll be no wars when we find out what Christmas is for.” MUCH more PC and just a much better song.
If you like ‘Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)’ sung by Michael Bublé, why not try instead ‘Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)’ by Darlene Love?
As much as I love breaking out the Christmas Bublé on the first of December every year, I believe it’s also important to give original artists their due. Darlene Love unfortunately has a long history of being screwed over in terms of recognition, despite her many talents and many hit singles, especially as this single was released just a few weeks prior to the JFK assassination and was deemed too jolly to be played on the radio. It’s a beautiful song and she gives it so much heart.
And finally, other Christmas essentials (and our very own Spotify Christmas playlist)
‘Step into Christmas’ by Elton John
‘Last Christmas’ by Wham
‘White Christmas’ by Bing Crosby
‘Wonderful Christmastime’ by Paul McCartney
Image: Jackson 5 Christmas Album, Motown