Funny Business with Jane Wells

The 12 Days Of Horrible Christmas Songs


Not sick of holiday music yet?

This will seal the deal. I've compiled a list of the worst songs of the holidays.

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First, the music industry is more relentless than ten lords a-leaping this time of year in exploiting the season with new offerings by artists.

I call it Ka-ching-le bells.

The latest entrant is Justin Bieber's "Santa Claus is Coming to Town".

It's Michael Jackson meets "So you Think You Can Dance." Yet when the Biebs starts ripping off his jacket with his eyes closed while passionately belting out, "He knows when you've been bad or good..." I don't think he's thinking of Santa.

But I've seen worse. Much, much worse. 

Here's my list of what's naughty--not nice--when it comes to Christmas songs. Twelve songs for the 12 days of Christmas. I've left off the usual selections like "Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer" and the inexplicably popular "Dominic the Italian Christmas Donkey". Instead, I've focused on hard-to-find gems which will ruin your holidays for good. You're welcome.

I'm counting them down from bad to worse.

#12: "Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer" by Regis Philbin, with help from Donald Trump. What starts out as a cute idea for Regis and Kelly (who's apparently mute) turns into a crime against humanity when The Donald crashes the song to: 1) take Santa's job, 2) butt heads with a reindeer, 3) break dance, 4) tell Blitzen, "You're fired."

#11: "Christmas Shoes" by Newsong. Here's what I think happened. A group of Hollywood movie and music types got in a room and said, "Hey everybody, here's how we're going to get a quick buck. Let's write the sappiest, schmaltziest, white-breadiest Christmas song ever. Ideas?" "How about a dying mother whose makeup is still fabulously applied!" "Kid without any money who loves her!" "Hard hearted Rob Lowe!" "Over the top lyrics!!" All those fantastic ideas came together in a song about a boy who wants to buy his sick mother shoes--"I want her to look beautiful, if Mama meets Jesus tonight." You gotta be kidding me. Really? In those shoes? Also, does only one guy in Newsong actually sing? 

#10: Cyndi Lauper's "Christmas Conga" with Star Wars Galaxies dancers. Wrong, wrong, wrong. Wrong here. Wrong in a galaxy far, far away. Where's the Death Star when you need it?

#9: :"Last Christmas" by Wham!This one makes the list because it exemplifies everything wrong with the '80s:

  1. The song, like many songs of that era, is made up of only one line repeated 500 times.
  2. I can't tell who's wearing more makeup, the men or the women.
  3. I can still smell the perm chemicals in everyone's hair.
  4. I got dizzy from severe shoulder pad flashbacks.  
  5. Thank goodness George Michael doesn't have to pretend anymore.

#8: "Please Daddy, Don't Get Drunk This Christmas" by...John Denver. #Ironic.


#7: "Elf's Lament" by Barenaked Ladies with help from Michael Buble.

Here's the song without Buble, but it's still not working for me. "A full indentured servitude can reflect on one's attitude, but that silly red hat just makes the fat man look outrageous," go the overly complex lyrics. "Absurd though it may seem, you know, I've heard there's even been illegal doping, and though we're coping, I just hope it's not contagious." What the...? The refrain whines, "Naughty or nice, but consider the price to an elf." Hey, guys, ELVES AREN'T REAL.

#6: "Have a Cheeky Xmas" by The Cheeky Girls. They put the slut in sleigh! The subtitles are also a nice touch, in case you can't figure out  what these Transylvanian twins are really trying to tell you.

#5: "Have a Funky, Funky Christmas" by the New Kids on the Block. In terms of song, this one is the worst. Add to that the whole "sexing up" of the holiday (including yet another young man taking off his jacket. Hmmmm, is this how we'll look at Bieber in 20 years?). What's worse for the group is that Arsenio joins them during the last minute and leaves them in the dust.

#4: "Little Drummer Boy" by Lauryn Hill as introduced by Rosie O'Donnell (audio only). Good luck recognizing the holiday classic here. Hill's arrangement is more Barry White than Mormon Tabernacle Choir. Plus there's Rosie, who seemingly morphs the story of a boy who had nothing to give his newborn King with the It Gets Better campaign. As someone commented on Youtube, "This sucks so hard it blows."

#3: "The Christmas Song" by David Hasselhoff. You knew I had to include the Hoff. No list of poorly executed musical performances can exist without him. But even by Hoff's standards, this Christmas video is creepy. Chester the Molester creepy. Much of the supporting cast looks as joyful as if they've just been given a cancer diagnosis, including the dog. Finally, I don't know what they've been feeding those rabbits, but they scare me. 


#2: "Wonderful Christmas Time" by Paul McCartney. This guy was a Beatle. Sgt. Pepper. Hey, Jude. Ok? He's a legend. SIR PAUL. And THIS is his answer to John Lennon's "Happy Christmas"? Only saving grace is that he looks so cute. As bad as this song is--and it is horrible--there is one which is even worse. Yes, the only thing worse than a treacly holiday song from legendary rocker Paul McCartney would be...

#1: "It Must Be Santa" by Bob Dylan. This wins top honors for the Worst Christmas Song Ever. Here is the poet of a generation, a man who has inspired so many musicians, giving us some weird polka. The song begins, "Who's got a beard that's long and white?" and goes downhill from there. At first, I'm thinking, "Ok, it's Dylan, he's having a laugh." I told myself to keep watching and I'm sure I'd eventually unlock the answer to this mysterious piece of tripe. But then, near the end of the song, some guy starts breaking glassware and throws himself through a window, and I realized the answer, my friend, ain't blowin' in the wind.

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