After my parents got a divorce, my Christmases became something like Hanukkah; eight crazy nights of Christmas gatherings with various relatives. It was okay, but a little much, especially since this was the mid-point of high school basketball season. I pretty much enjoyed my down time during basketball. But, on those long drives home with Dad after a Christmas gathering with his side of the family, we would be listening to the better local AM station play a mixture of the days’ latest hits and Christmas music. It was hilarious hearing Ram Jam’s “Black Betty” being followed by “Santa Claus & His Old Lady” by Cheech & Chong, then a little Bee Gees’ “You Should Be Dancing”, then Elton John’s “Step Into Christmas”. Those days were very eclectic. But, no radio station, whether it be streaming, part of XM/Sirrus or of land radio. Boy, I really do miss those days.
Before I cover my next 10 favorite songs, I would love to thank my new blog friend, HERC, who runs one of the finest rock music lover’s sites on the internet. I his comments, HERC has added links to the first ten song so you can enjoy. But, if you want to see how a blog should be run, check out HERC’s Hideaway at https://hercshideaway.blogspot.com/. Now, as the prophet Casey Kasem would say, on with the countdown.
90. The Little Stinkers – “I Farted on Santa’s Lap (Now, Christmas Is Gonna Stink)” (1999). This proves that their is no diminishing returns when it comes to fart humor to me. Sorry, I’m just a teenager trapped in an old man’s body. Plus, who said we can’t laugh on Jesus’ birthday.
89. Neon Trees – “Wish List” (2010). Modern pop music is perfect for Christmas time, and this is the only song I know from Neon Trees. But, they did hit a holiday home run.
88. Joni Mitchell – “River” (1971). Mitchell probably never meant for this song to become a Christmas standard, but that is what has happened since the Nineties. This is a great song about the loneliness of winter.
87. Mavis Staples – “Christmas Vacation” (1990). So, you grab one of the greatest non-Aretha female voices in history and give her a cute little pop ditty for her to immortalize. Mission accomplished, indeed.
86. The Brian Setzer Orchestra – “Boogie Woogie Santa Claus” (2008). This former Stray Cat guitar slinger jump-started the whole jumpin’ jive big band sound of the Nineties, then transcended it by creating three classic Christmas albums in the style, with this song being one of the best examples.
85. Disco Four – “He’s Santa Claus” (1987). Old School Rap embraced the Christmas season immediately, and here is one of the finest examples of the genre. This cut comes from the classic Christmas Rap compilation album. If you can find it, you will love it!
84. Boney M – “Mary’s Boy Child/Oh Lord” (1979). Boney M was an European disco phenomenon in the late Seventies. Boney M brought Christmas to the dance floors of 1979 with this hit.
83. Ying Yang Twins – “Deck da Club” (2008). Okay, these twins walk the line of what is inappropriate and what is not. And, this is definitely NOT your parents’ Christmas music.
82. Stevie Wonder – “What Christmas Means to Me” (1967). Stevie Wonder hit two Christmas home runs in the Sixties, and this is the first one on my list. This one is a bit nostalgic, as well as cutting right to the meaning of Christmas. All wrapped up in Stevie’s positive music.
81. Cheech & Chong – “Santa & His Old Lady” (1971). These improv comedians were the first to embody the zeitgeist of rock music. Yes, their humor is of the Seventies, but much of it cuts to the essence of life. Couple their drug humor with Santa Claus, and it was ripe for laughs. So, how did the reindeer fly? Magic dust, of course! A little for the reindeer, a little for Santa, a little more for Santa, a little more Santa. And, this bit still cracks me up! And get this…my mother LOVED Cheech & Chong! She uses “fanny perpendicular” to refer to her rear end to this day after hearing the duo use it in “Earache My Eye”.
So, ten more down, and eighty to go! Let’s keep the Christmas Spirit alive!