Thursday, December 07, 2006

Worst. Christmas. Songs. Ever.

So I was driving Maggie around our fair city last night, as driving calms her down and she was exposed to cool air that soothed her throat--both great things for a croupy child who is coughing so hard, she's making herself throw up. The drive did the trick, and while Maggie and I were zipping around the neighborhood checking out Christmas light displays, my brother Tom called. Turns out he was driving as well, and I happened to mention something I was listening to on the holiday channel on Sirius ... which set him off in a way I haven't witnessed since he walked out of Star Wars, Episode 1 and someone said the name "Jar-Jar."

It was ugly. F-bombs flying everywhere.

Apparently, it took a few really horrible holiday songs to turn my brother into an activist. Last night, I learned that every year, Tom writes the good people at Sirius a letter, decryng their poor taste in holiday music and lamenting that several of his favorites have been sadly underplayed on Channel 2's December rotation. I'm guessing that it's something the Sirius people look forward to every year.

So, to give Tom another outlet to express his rage, today's blog is dedicated to both reproducing this year's letter and listing the Worst Christmas Songs Ever in the History of Ever. Take it away, Tom! (I'll interject here and there, because while they don't inspire the forehead-bulging rage that the Vince Vance group does for you, I do have my own list.)

To the Good People of Sirius:

I have been a Sirius subscriber for 2+ years and want to thank you for providing me an outlet away from terrestrial radio. I appreciate the lack of commercials on the music channels as well as the lack of idiot DJs, so thank you. However, I have 1 issue. Every year I look forward to the holiday season and the carols of Christmas that accompany it. I am happy that you have dedicated a couple of channels to playing only holiday music. What I am not happy with is the lack of creativity and selection of the songs played.


1.) "The Christmas Song" should never be played by anyone EXCEPT the late, great Nat "King" Cole.
2.) "White Christmas" should never be played by anyone EXCEPT the late, great Bing Crosby.
3.) Other standards are a necessity, but should not be played more than 5 times an hour!
4.) The variety of artists is good, BUT I am sure that each of them recorded more than 1 Christmas song! I can only take so much of Dean Martin singing "I've Got My Love to Keep Me Warm." How about "Baby It's Cold Outside?" Or when he does a classic like "Joy to the World," but puts that great Dean-o half drunk, leering attitude behind it?
5.) What the f@ck do you play Vince Vance and the Valiants' "All I want for Christmas is You?" Who the f@ck are they?! The song sounds like karaoke that I can go to my local bar and hear.
6.) Why must you insist on playing only the new version of "Do They Know Its Christmas?" The classic Band-Aid should have never suffered the indignity of being remade. Especially with that stupid rap in the middle of the new one.

If you could please just add more variety, it would be very much appreciated. I remain yours, a loyal subscriber,

Tom R.

I first want to apologize to Tracy's readers - she and Troy got the writing skills, I just got the math skills and a savant like sense of direction. Here is my list of songs that need to go!:

All I want for Christmas is You - Vince Vance and the Valiants - What a train wreck. This one gets me worked up the minute I see the name flash on my Sirius screen. First of all, who are these idiots? I actually looked them up on Wikipedia and found out that they are a "party band." If you ask me, they are a bunch of "no talent ass-clowns." (thanks Office Space!) Plus, that name is so lame. And, their 2 other "hits" according to Wikipedia were "Bomb Iran" and "Bomb Iraq." To me this is THE number one most annoying song played at Christmas.

Christmas Shoes - New Song - What a piece of crap this song is. It is one of those songs where the person writing it is just trying to gain attention as the "Aw, isn't that sweet" song. Well, it isn't. It is a manufactured, try-too-hard holiday song. Big ups to the Lean Left blog, which said:

"If you haven’t heard it, it’s a song about a boy who’s scraping together money to buy a pretty pair of shoes for his mom, who’s dying. He wants to buy them because 'I want her to look beautiful if Mama meets Jesus tonight.' Oy. The only way to make the song even remotely tolerable is to do something Kevin found Googling up the song: Imagine the kid is a grifter, his mom is waiting in the car, and they’ve been pulling this scam at every store in town, with plans to return the shoes for cash two days after Christmas."

Wonderful Christmas Time - Paul McCartney -
Anything from the Wings-era Sir Paul should be forgotten. He should have written this for Boxing Day instead. This is the Jar Jar Binks of Sir Paul's music career.

Anything by the Trans-Siberia Orchestra - Sorry fellas, but you could not carry the Manheim Steamrollers jock. Who came up with this? "Yeah, let's do some music like Manheim Steamroller, but then get really loud and annoying!" Well, you succeeded!

Any holiday song by the Eurythmics - I like their pop stuff, but the holiday stuff has to go.

Tracy jumps in to add:

Jingle Bells, by the Jingle Dogs

What kind of tin-eared freak thought it would be a good idea to have DOGS barking once-beloved Christmas carols in their entirety? I want to tie him up and make him listen to dogs barking every Clay Aiken song in existence. Accompanied by Kenny G.

Santa Baby, any version, but especially Madonna's
This song creeps me the hell out. I don't care if it's a song about a woman in love with her significant other, who happens to be dressed in a Santa suit at the moment. You simply Do. Not. Sexualize. Santa. It's wrong. So very, very wrong.

Any KidzBop carol
Note to the creator--just because you spell "kids" with a Z does not make you cool. Kidzbop--a Disney franchise where they take perfectly good songs and have a "choir" (and I use that term loosely) of loud, shrieking children (aka "kidz") belt them out at full voice while trying some ridiculously age-inappropriate runs and swoops and other vocal atrocities--is simply an abomination. To turn said children on holiday carols crosses a line that never, never should have been crossed.

I'm Getting Nuttin' for Christmas, by anyone
The word is nothing. NOTHING! NOTHING, damn you!

TOM SAYS: I know that a lot of you are thinking, "Hey! Lighten up! Its Christmas!" Well, I will by giving you some of my favorite songs.

Christmastime is Here and Hark the Herald Angels Sing - A Charlie Brown Christmas - Classic. I love the Peanuts gang and these songs are sincere. Plus, almost everyone will feel nostalgic hearing these 2. (Tracy says: What's up with replacing words with numbers? R U2 cool 4 this blog? I bet K-Fed does that.)

Anything on the Barenaked Ladies Holiday Album - If you want fun, good Christmas (and Hanukkah!) songs, pick up this album. BNL put a fun spin on Holiday songs. Plus, they have great Guests like Sarah Mclachlan and Michael Buble. I recommend "Elf's Lament," "Green Christmas," and "Hanukkah, Oh Hanukkah."

This Christmas - Jeffrey Osborne - I love the funk in this song. As a lifelong LA Lakers fan, I am partial to the man who sung many national Anthems before the start of their games. Plus, the man sang on "We Are the World" AND dueted with Alfonso Ribeiro on Celebrity Duets! (Tracy says: And he also sang something called "The Woo Woo Song." Which just has to be cool.)

Anything with Bing Crosby and the Andrews sisters. Just great harmonies and again, that nostalgic feeling. "Mele Kalikimaka" is one of my favorites!

Oi to the World - No Doubt - I am a big No Doubt fan and they did Christmas right with this one. It is true to their sound and background and has a Christmas theme - punk style. (Tracy says: I just hope it's better than what Gwen did to "It's the End of the World as We Know It" on New Year's. :::shudder:::)

Let Me Sleep - Pearl Jam - The greatest band to have ever lived. Another song true to the band. Eddie simply asks, "Please let me sleep, its Christmastime." (Tracy says: Eddie must have two croupy kids with eye goo. Rock on, Eddie! I feel your pain!)

My Favorite Things - Tony Bennett - I know, this was in Sound of Music, but this has become a holiday staple. TB's version is the best out there.

Tracy says: Thanks, Tom! No one does a cranky old man at 30 better than you, especially at Christmas!


MaryF said...

Okay, I LOVE Santa Baby ;) I bought the Very Special Christmas CD twice for that song.

But all the rest, heck, yeah, I agree!

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Tracy Montoya said...

Uh, again, sorry, Mary! I'm sure you're not alone, since everyone in the free world seems to remake this song!

The Queen-a Athena said...

Oh, Tracy. Damn, you always make me laugh, even with sick kids sapping your brain. (Poor bunnies.)

LOVED the Oscar-swipingblog (though DUH is me, I didn't even know Angelina had one. So she gets the perfect bod, the fame, AND an Oscar? Life is not fair. However, she's also stuck with pretty boy Brad. Major yick factor.

But I have a Christmas song that beats the crap out of almost anything on that list. (It might still come in second to the shoe-buying one, which is horrific enough to make me start belting Hava Nagilah to cover the crap.) However, the kids and I were driving home from Christmas Eve service a few years ago and were treated to the unforgettable (trust me, I've tried) sound of the Village People singing, "N-O-E-L" to the tune of YMCA. Mommy, make it STOP!

Mariann said...

Ugh, I heard "Christmas Shoes" a few weeks ago, and it was inexplicably awful. Same for the Jessica/Ashlie Simpson tragic duet of "Little Drummer Boy."

Favorites include:

Nearly every Christmas tune by Los Straitjackets

Sarah McLachlan's new holiday album

Amy Grant's "O'Come All Ye Faithful" for its acoustic guitar and simple beauty

Tracy Montoya said...

Chris, Angelina got a Best Supporting Oscar from Girl, Interrupted. It's TOTALLY unfair.

And I'm cringing just reading about that Village People carol. Yeeesh.

Tracy Montoya said...

Mariann, I am SO glad I haven't heard the Simpson duet--painful just thinking about it.

I don't know Los Straitjackets--will have to check them out. But I agree with the other two!

Anonymous said...

NOEL sung to YMCA? That's enough to make me poke out my eardrums with a candy cane.

And I gotta agree with Tracy on Santa baby. It just seems wrong and not in a good way. :-)

A remake I hate...Vanessa Williams singing have yourself a Merry Little Christmas. Call me old fashioned, but I'm partial to the Carpenters on this one

Tracy Montoya said...

OMIGOD, Los Straitjackets are awesome--Christmas instrumentals done like 1960 surfer songs. (Non-Beach Boys surfer songs.) So fun! Thanks, Mariann!

Sharron, I'm not a huge fan of the Vanessa William's song, but it's no Christmas Shoes. ::shudder::

a music lover said...

Vince Vance's version of "All I Want For Christmas Is You" is bad enough but if you really want to send unwanted guests running out the door, play Mariah Carey's version. Better yet, play any Christmas song sung by Mariah "I love to show how high I can sing" Carey and they'll drive the grinches away. Peace on earth would be if Mariah died and her entire music library was destroyed along with her.

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Tracy Montoya writes romantic suspense for Harlequin Intrigue.

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