Tag Archives: Christmas
So this is the season to be jolly? What is all this forced fun and happiness we have to have around this time of the year? Christmas may be bring tidings of joy for many but for some it doesn’t. Infact it may sharpens the unhappiness that people may feel as everyone says to ‘be happy’.
So for anyone who is blue at Christmas here are my top not so cheerful songs. Instead of ho ho ho let’s say boo boo hoo.
Have yourself a Merry little Christmas
This song has fallen in the category of now being what was the opposite of the original intention, such as ‘Every breath you take’ by the Police which is a song about stalking which is being played at wedding, or ‘Born in the USA’ by Bruce Springsteen that was heralded by Ronald Regan which is infact an angry song about the exploitation of working class Americans.
Quoting Wikipedia, the song first appeared in a scene in Meet Me in St. Louis, in which a family is distraught by the father’s plans to move to New York City for a job promotion, leaving behind their beloved home in St. Louis, Missouri just before the long-anticipated Louisiana Purchase Exposition begins. In a scene set on Christmas Eve, Judy Garland’s character, Esther, sings the song to cheer up her despondent five-year-old sister, Tootie. The original lyrics go like this:
No good times like the olden days, happy golden days of yore,
Faithful friends who were dear to us, will be near to us no more.
But at least we all will be together, if the Fates allow,
From now on we’ll have to muddle through somehow.
So have yourself a merry little Christmas now.
Here is the scene from the movie. And as you can see is not a ‘happy’ one, but quite sad (see the clip right to the end after the song).
This was thought to be far too depressing for later versions to be played on Carols by Candlelight on TV. So the schmaltzy version goes like this:
Here we are as in olden days,
Happy golden days of yore.
Faithful friends who are dear to us
Gather near to us once more.
Through the years
We all will be together,
If the Fates allow
Hang a shining star upon the highest bough.
And have yourself A merry little Christmas now.
The version sung by James Taylor here at least keeps the ‘From now on we’ll have to muddle through somehow’ line.
Blue Christmas – Elvis
And when those blue snowflakes start falling
That’s when those blue memories start calling
You’ll be doin all right, with your Christmas of white
But I’ll have a blue, blue blue blue Christmas
I know that there are Elvis fans out there that choke when they hear this song sung by him. Personally even though it is a sad song I reckon he sung it a bit tongue in cheek. But have a look yourself. What’s really sad is that Elvis turned from that handsome man in this video into a obese food addict.
Christmas Card from a Hooker in Minneapolis – Tom Waits
As Wikipedia explains, the song’s lyrics narrate a letter written by a prostitute to a man named Charlie. She confesses to being pregnant, and describes her current living circumstances, including her stable relationship with a partner who promises to raise her arriving baby “like he would his own son.” At the song’s conclusion, the author confesses to Charlie that she has been lying to him; she does not have a husband, is currently serving time in prison, and will be eligible for parole on Valentine’s Day.
River – Joni Mitchell
This is a very melancholic song where Mitchell writes sadly on the breakup of relationship where she feels she was responsible. Christmas is near and she wishes to escape and skate away, but perhaps reflecting on her Canadian origins she says that where she lives now (maybe California) the warm climate does not offer her that ice or that chance.
It’s coming on Christmas
They’re cutting down trees
They’re putting up reindeer
And singing songs of joy and peace
Oh I wish I had a river
I could skate away on
But it don’t snow here
It stays pretty green
I’m going to make a lot of money
Then I’m going to quit this crazy scene
I wish I had a river
I could skate away on
I wish I had a river so long
I would teach my feet to fly
Oh I wish I had a river
I could skate away on
I made my baby cry
Please Daddy Don’t Get Drunk This Christmas
This maybe is not only as sad song but more of a WTF song.
“Please Daddy don’t get drunk this Christmas
I don’t want to see my Momma cry
Please Daddy don’t get drunk this Christmas
I don’t want my Momma cry”
I know that John Denver did the most famous version, but this one I am showing is even more incongruous as the singers are smiling while singing it.
Wish you were here – Melinda Schneider
OK, for the most depressing top rated wrist slashing Christmas song you can’t go past Wish you were here by Melinda Schneider. It is actually a nice song, but is its depressing. It deals with grief of the first Christmas without someone who passed away.
if a sinner prayed to the lord above
would he send me back the one I love
would he suddenly make you appear
my darling, wish you were here…….
i long for our younger days
the chance to say I love you
a million memories made, but now I’m here
they say the pain will fade
a little more each year
and darling, wish you were here
And while some song have a bit of redemptive hope at the end, this song does not let up.
hung the tinsel on the tree tonight
little candle now I’ll hold on tight
to the memories i hold so dear
my darling wish you were here
oh it’s gonna be a sad new year
my darling, wish you were here
Fuck Christmas, i got the blues – The Legendary Tigerman
The title says it all really.
I stopped being ‘homesick’ about the place where I spent my childhood decades ago. I mean I migrated to Australia just after I turned 13, and I am a year off being 50. So I am in effect a fully fledged Australian. I spent many more summer Christmases than winter ones.
However all throughout these years I have been unable to shake off the feeling that somehow I was in the wrong hemisphere when it came to Christmas. I like winter, and I long for those Christmases on my childhood when it was winter and you were snug in bed, not in front of a fan sweltering at night with record high minimum temperatures.
So when I see the picture above, from the newspaper of the city where I grew up I can’t help to have a sense of longing. That picture was taken last Monday in Piazza Vittorio Veneto, where every year a nativity scene is installed. The set up is a bit more flash, but it is in exactly in the same position as I remember it. The snow, the soft winter light it makes me want to escape the heat and experience the crunch of the snow below my feet as I approach the presepe.
So Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to everyone, whatever the weather.