As we get closer and closer to the big day – Christmas Day, of course – the plethora of stations pumping out Christmas music is at a peak now. If you are depressed or just not interested in celebrating or feel like December 25 is a poor excuse for picking a man’s pocket (Ebenezer Scrooge thought so), it is kind of hard to escape the ubiquitous carols and songs. Almost every store is cranking out the holiday tunes now, as well as banks, office buildings, and post offices. There is virtually no place to escape this non-stop assault except your own home, unless you are like I am and you have kids playing the songs on the piano and the stereo.
I feel like Peter Finch’s character Howard Beale in the film Network – I’m mad as hell and not going to take it anymore. Alas, there is virtually no quiet place for me except my home office, where I can barricade the door, plug up my ears, and try to get some work done.
Since I have been subjected to this barrage of holiday playlists from all quarters, I have been noticing that some of these Christmas songs are worse than others. They are quite irritating to say the least. Besides the “Deck the Halls” and “White Christmas” variety and those of the sentimental traditional ilk, there are ones that grate on the nerves more than an Ann Coulter monologue.
So I have composed a list of the ten most annoying, totally unnecessary to hear Christmas songs that I absolutely turn off if I have the power to do so. The first five are those songs that neither mention Christmas nor seem to have an affiliation with it. They are:
10. “Let It Snow”
All about the weather being frightful and a fire delightful, hearing it makes me want to take a snow shovel and teach the radio a lesson. Worst version – Stephen Colbert with Cyndi Lauper and Alan Cumming
9. “Baby, It’s Cold Outside”
I am sure this will be number one on some lists because it is so hard to take, especially when the duet is totally incongruous. My vote for worst version goes to Rod Stewart and Dolly Parton, who have about as much chemistry as oil and water.
8. “Jingle Bells”
Again, a song that could land as number one on many people’s lists, this ditty is most annoying when sung accompanied by said bells in the background. Slews of bad versions, though my vote for number one is Ray Conniff and company (they have quite a few annoying versions of other Christmas songs as well).
7. “Frosty the Snowman”
Everyone loves old Frosty, right? Every time I hear it I wish for tropical sunshine. The absolutely worst version is by Jimmy Durante from the old TV show based on the lyrics, which took a bad song and made it horrible.
6. “Winter Wonderland”
Does it make sense that in the meadow we’re building a snowman and making believe he’s Parson Brown? No connection to Christmas or any other holiday, it grates on the nerves if especially sung by someone who thinks it’s a classic tune. My vote for worst version goes to Willie Nelson.
Now we move on to songs with an obvious Christmas connection that are still dreadful. The top five are:
5. “Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer”
I get it that someone thought this was a funny idea, and Elmo and Patsy give the song their best shot, but there is nothing remotely amusing about Grandpa being happy that Grandma got killed. I dare you to try to listen to the whole song once without changing the channel.
4. “Santa Baby”
Isn’t it cute that Santa has a little honey on the side who wants a duplex and for the Jolly Old Elf to write checks? The dreadful lyrics that are milked for all their worth (a buck fifty is about right) by everyone from Eartha Kitt to Taylor Swift to Madonna. It’s a song that is more irritating every time I hear it. If I were Santa, I’d jump back in the sleigh and go right back to the North Pole and kiss Mrs. Claus.
3. “All I Want for Christmas Is My Two Front Teeth”
Perpetually annoying and often played for laughs, this song makes me wonder if the original kid who sang it didn’t get his teeth knocked out for doing so. Written by music teacher Donald Gardner “in thirty minutes” (isn’t it obvious?), the absolute worst version is by RuPaul. Avoid this one at all costs.
2. “Dominick the Donkey”
One of the oddest, most grueling in this collection of misfit songs, this one is hard to sit through even once. As sung by the obviously enthusiastic Lou Monte, it is a novelty song that will make you search for the “off” button while hoping the donkey will kick Mr. Monte away from the microphone.
1. “The Chipmunk Song”
People of a certain age will remember growing up with this one and loathing it. Sung by its writer Ross Bagdasarian in the “chipmunk voice” (he also plays “Dave” their owner), it is hands down the worst Christmas song ever – and vies with “Disco Duck” (sung by an awful Rick Dees) for the worst song of all time. How Bagdasarian parlayed this dreadful ditty into a franchise is beyond explanation, but I’d like to take Alvin’s hula hoop and hit “Dave” over the head with it.
So there is my list for the absolutely most annoying, dreadful, awful, and eardrum piercing Christmas songs. If you are listening to one of those all Christmas music radio stations, you are bound to come across some of these clunkers. My advice is change the channel before you damage your psyche any more than it already has been by this incessant saturation of holiday tunes.
What are your nominations for worst Christmas songs? Please let me know in the comments section – I am sure that I missed a few.
Photo credits: pixgood.com, poezija.ezgeta.com, aragec.com, wikipedia
[amazon template=iframe image&asin=B0057FGCJQ]