Cracking Open the Top 10: My UN-Christmassy Christmas Song Playlist
Aaaand we’re back,with more Un-Christmassy fun! It’s time to start unveiling the Top 10. Ready?
- Christmas Will Be Just Another Lonely Day- Brenda Lee
I fought with myself over whether to include this tune or not. After all, 99.999% of you who are reading this (which amounts to,perhaps ten or twelve people) have never heard of this little gem. But since this blog is about MY personal Top 13 Un-Christmassy Christmas tunes, it doesn’t really matter how obscure this tune is.
When it comes to seasonal songs, Brenda Lee (AKA “Little Miss Dynamite”) will be remembered for eternity for her hit “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree.” But my Mom was Brenda’s biggest fan, so I grew up with ALL of Brenda’s music. Even as a small child, I gravitated towards sad songs. So,even though Brenda recorded cheerful songs like “Frosty the Snowman” and “Marshmallow World” on this LP, my favorite, by far, was “Christmas Will Be Just Another Lonely Day.” Key lyrics are in the bridge:
“I had a lonely September, October, November, too.
But December is twice as lonely without you.”
Merry Christmas From the Family- Montgomery Gentry
Country music and drinking go together like, well rum and Coke! I can’t decide between these two intoxicating tunes…. They basically cancel each other out.
Country music duo, Montgomery Gentry recorded this nugget, written by Robert Earl Keen, in 2001. The title may sound like a line from a Hallmark Card, but once you hear Eddie Montgomery utter the opening line:
“Mom got drunk and Dad got drunk at a Christmas party…”
You know that this is not going to be your ordinary, warm-and-fuzzy holiday tune. Not in the least.
Drunk on Christmas- Big and Rich
Comedian/ talk show host Jimmy Fallon had already made this ditty a holiday staple on his late night show, when he teamed up with country singer-songwriter John Rich in December 2010 to make it a boisterous duet. At the time, John was taking a break from the duo Big and Rich to work on some solo projects. He and “Big Kenny” Alphin have since reunited, and in 2012, they released their own take on the song. It seems a perfect choice of holiday tunage from the act whose debut single was called “Save a Horse, Ride a Cowboy.”
8. Nuttin’ For Christmas- Barry Gordon
One of the cool things about writing this multi-part blog is learning things I never knew before about songs I’ve heard for ages. In this case, we travel all the way back to 1955 (it’s the oldest song on this list). Barry Gordon was only six years old when he recorded this lil’ gem. Written by Sid Tepper and Roy Bennett, this song perfectly illustrates why I never had kids; if I had, he’d have probably been something like the brat in this song. The precocious lad brags about all of the petty crimes he’s committed over the past year… putting a tack on his teacher’s chair, spilling ink on Mom’s carpet, filling the sugar bowl with ants, even using counterfeit money to buy bubble gum!
So, did this Barry kid grow up to be a hardened criminal? Was he some random schoolboy who could hold a tune, but who faded into obscurity after his voice changed?
Anything but!!! Actually, Barry Gordon may not be a household name, but he continued his showbiz career for decades, following his infectious pop hit, acting in TV and on Broadway, and providing voices in the 1980s for Smurfs and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Barry was also President of the Screen Actors Guild for seven years.
Tune in later this week for the next installment in our countdown!