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17 December 2011

Your Five Least Favorite Christmas Songs?

Yesterday I was struck with a serious question. I had no choice but to tweet it and put it on Facebook for my very best friends to consider. You may have read it already:

If "I don't want a lot for Christmas," yet "all I want for Christmas is you," isn't that song ultimately one big insult?
With that, you can probably guess that "All I Want for Christmas is You" handily earns a spot in the list of my least favorite Christmas songs of all time. This isn't an easy list for me to make because I'm so opinionated. Lots of songs should make the list, but only five lucky ones will.

By the way, I thought about making this post about favorite Christmas songs, but that's just not as fun.

I'll be focusing on popular Christmas songs; not the obscure tunes that almost everyone hates. There's a high probability that you will like -- nay, even love -- multiple songs on my list. I'm willing to take that chance.

So without further ado, here is The Dean's List: My Five Least Favorite Christmas Songs of All Time (if you'd like to purchase any of these stinkers for whatever weird and disturbed reason, I've linked them to MP3's at

  1. All I Want for Christmas is You
  2. The Christmas Shoes
  3. All I Want for Christmas Is My Two Front Teeth 
  4. Last Christmas 
  5. Santa Claus is Coming to Town (the butchered Jackson 5/Bruce Springsteen, etc. version, NOT the unassailable classic song upon which Arthur Rankin, Jr. and Jules Bass based their gripping drama of the same name.)
I've chosen one song on the list to explain its inclusion. Ranting about each song would be very impractical from a time standpoint. I'd be here too long. Let's run with Newsong's "The Christmas Shoes" (who knew the title had "The" in it?):

There is so much I want to say about this song. It's possibly the most contrived urban legend I've ever heard, which is how this song unfortunately came to life (some will argue that it's based on a true story. I don't believe that for a moment). Shoes?? For a kid's dying mother? I probably shouldn't state the obvious, but very likely, well... she's not going to have an opportunity to wear them. And it's Christmas Eve! The boy should be at his mom's bedside, not leeching off of some stranger on the street. The lone child singing the last line is consumer manipulation at its worst. I can almost hear the producer saying to his associates in the recording studio, "You know what will really get 'em? We'll have a kid sing the last line!" and everybody in the room breaks into kudos for this bit of unexpected production genius.

Enough of that. You get the idea. Now, if my list were, say, a "Top Eight" list, I could easily think of three more songs. Since this is a "Top Five" list, though, I have to make a whole new one:

The Dean's List: I Really Dislike These Christmas Songs, As Well:
  1. Little St. Nick (my daughter loves this song. I feel terrible having it on my list)
  2. I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas (same comment as the previous song)
  3. Hey, Santa (this apparently isn't the correct name, but I believe these are the first lyrics in the song. A little help?)
The floor is open for you to share your list or just to give me some serious grief for dissing your favorite Christmas song!


Bo Williams said...

I really dislike “Jingle Bell Rock.” Probably, the Hall and Oates video did it in for me. In fact, I don’t care for a lot of relatively recent Christmas songs. I don’t like “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree” either. I mentioned in an earlier post that “Silver Bells” (1951) might be the most recent one I really like. I have little use for anything by a modern artist unless it’s a fairly faithful version of a traditional song, though I do enjoy The Pretenders’ “2000 Miles.”

Dean Lusk said...

I apologize for not having bookmarked your blog a long time ago, Bo. I might have written your comment verbatim. I'm on the exact same page as far as modern Christmas songs go.

I can think of only one serious exception. I actually like Darius Rucker's "Candy Cane Christmas". I think it's due to the old-school chord changes and classic imagery in the lyrics. (Don't tell anyone...)

Lisa Laree said...

My top three dislikes are 'The Christmas Shoes' - ditto what you said, 'Hippopotamus' because it's so annoying and John Lennon's 'Happy Christmas', which is one of the most dismal songs ever. I will turn off the radio or walk out of the store if one of those songs comes on.

And "All I Want for Christmas is You" was the track that happened to be playing on the Manhattan Transfer CD when your post came up in my burn feeder...

Jody Hooven said...

1) I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas- You don't know how I LOATHE this song!
2) All I Want For Christmas Is My Two Front Teeth
3) The Christmas Shoes
4) ALL SONGS by The Chipmunks
5) Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer

Life would be much better if I NEVER hear these again!

Jody Hooven

Dean Lusk said...

I totally forgot about the John Lennon tune, Lisa. Me, too!

Jody, I didn't forget "Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer," but I can't remember why I didn't put it on the runner-up list. I think it was because I almost never hear it (mercifully). I do kinda want to smash things when I hear it, though.

Christy said...

Anything the Beatles try to sing (including John Lennon's solo)

Santa Baby (just gross)

Twelve Days of Christmas

Frosty the Snowman

Jingle Bells (once had a co-worker at RFCU bring a CD with dogs barking Christmas songs! That did me in on Jingle Bells)

Overall, I pretty much despise most secular Christmas songs simply because they do not sing about the true reason we celebrate. However, much to your dismay (and most of those who commented already), I DO like "I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas"! I just think it's cute and it's fun to sign. ;0)

Ronni said...

I concur on "Christmas Shoes." I won't even give it the time to type "the" in front of it. I've thought the same thing...why is the dumb kid out shopping on Christmas Eve instead of spending the last few......well, I digress. You already said all that. And I have to agree with Christy....because I simply DO want a hippopotamus for Christmas. (I hope my kids read this). I don't care for "Frosty the Snowman" makes me feel plastic. On another note, I wish someone would explain "Hard Candy Christmas" to me. Is it about a candy Christmas that's hard, or about candy that is difficult to eat? or is Christmas itself hard? I never did get it. Anyway, fun post, Dean. Enjoyed it.

Anonymous said...

David J's contribution. . .
My vote goes to "Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer", which unfortunately has recently been used in an advertisment on TV. My mind has fortunately blanked out what product is the perpitrator of this crime. Another song that irritates me is "I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus". Nothing like promoting marital unfaithfulness in song at Christmas time. And one last gripe is all of the sappy, secular, made-for-TV 'holiday' songs in The Garfield Christmas special. For many years we have a tradition of watching a VHS copy of Garfield and the Claymation Christmas specials. Claymation is pretty good but Garfield is getting on my nerves.

Tony M said...

Have to agree with you, Dean: my five least favorite Christmas songs are "The Christmas Shoes." (Yes, that's it - that's all five; I hope NOT to have had to turn the radio off five times this year, and so far I'm only up to twice, I think.)

Dean Lusk said...

@Ronni I'd not heard "Hard Candy Christmas" until a coworker came into my office Friday and we chatted for a few minutes about our least favorite Christmas carols (which is, not surprisingly, what prompted the post). He pulled the old, "Yes, you have!" each time I told him that I'd never heard "Hard Candy Christmas". I never convinced him, so I had to settle for qualifying my statement by adding, " least, not that I know of."

So he proceeded to play it for me. I proceeded to dislike it both intensely and immediately.

@David I always thought (as early as I understood the theme, anyway) that "I Saw Mommy..." was actually the mom kissing the dad while he was dressed in a Santa suit. That would, of course, make it an adult-themed song, which means kids shouldn't listen to it.

@Tony I get it.

Anonymous said...

I don't like Christmas Shoes, That dumb donkey song, I saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus, War is Over and Baby its Cold Outside

Dean Lusk said...

Thanks for the new feedback! I guess it's time to get things into Christmas gear here.

I still wonder why I like "Baby, It's Cold Outside". Seems like that over should be on my least-favorite list, but it isn't. Strange...

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