It is that time again, a time for tinsel, cookies, too much drinking and everything that comes along with it, angry throngs of people descending on the marketplace to buy the love of a cynical (and ultimately ungrateful) child, sibling, friend or colleague, and as always, Christmas songs written by Jews.
Here is a smattering of classic Christmas songs written by Jewish composers and/or lyricists: Winter Wonderland, The Christmas Song (Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire), Sleigh Ride, Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!, White Christmas, Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer, It’s The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year, Rockin’ Around The Christmas Tree, Silver Bells, I’ll Be Home For Christmas, and last but not least, A Holly Jolly Christmas. I am sure there are countless more but in the twenty minutes I spent researching the topic, this is what I found.
Although I am not of Jewish descent, I feel compelled to mention these songs when presenting my own take on the Christmas song form. Christmas songs by outsiders resonate with me personally, deeply really. And my own contribution to the format has been a product of the kind of detachment an atheist feels around the holidays. Like the composers of the songs listed above I’ve made an assessment, observing from the outside looking in, without all the baggage, like Jane Goodall or Claude Lévi-Strauss.
Last year’s Christmas song chronicled the young Shirley Temple’s realization that Santa Clause was not real and the devastation that all children feel when confronted with such a horrifying truth (you can find that song here). In that spirit, I would like to present a happy number about love in this most splendid time of year, Holidaze. Please enjoy this holiday ditty performed by the Nicholas Urie Large Ensemble. If you like what you hear there is still time to buy enough copies of Excerpts From an Online Dating Service to fill everyone’s Christmas stockings. ENJOY!
Listen to holidaze here.