Unlike any early music genre, Christmas songs never seem to get old. Every December, we guiltlessly wheel them out. We constantly love sing and dancing along to festive favourites from past. But what are the greatest Christmas songs of all time ? We ‘ve ranked our very favorite Christmas crackers below. Is yours in there ?
George Michael – ‘December Song (I Dreamed of Christmas)’
An underestimate modern Christmas birdcall, George released this back in 2009, giving him a lead 10 collision at the prison term. It samples ‘Christmas Waltz ‘ by Frank Sinatra, and is a lovely count back at Christmases as a child. Written for the Spice Girls and then Michael Bublé in mind, George decided to keep it for himself .
Johnny Mathis – ‘When a Child is Born’
This song was based on the melody of ‘Soleado ‘, a tune from 1974 by Ciro Dammicco and Dario Baldan Bembo. After songwriter Fred Jay added English lyrics, it was covered by respective artists, including veteran crooner Johnny Mathis. Mathis scored an unexpected Christmas number one in 1976, selling over 800,000 copies .
Cliff Richard – ‘Mistletoe and Wine’
Sir Cliff became the new King of Christmas after releasing this gay ballad in 1988, becoming that class ‘s Christmas numeral one. The song was actually written for a melodious called Scraps, which was an adaptation of Hans Christian Andersen ‘s The Little Match Girl, set in priggish London. Cliff loved the song, and tweaked it to have a more religious angle. Bonus fact : Smooth ‘s Myleene Klass provided backing vocals in the choir share of the song when she was just 10 years old !
Jethro Tull – ‘Ring Out, Solstice Bells’
This song is about the winter solstice, which takes identify on the shortest day of the year in the northern hemisphere – either December 21 or 22. The song describes a solstice celebration in medieval times, with dancing druids and ringing bells. not your usual Christmas collision subject ! It was n’t a massive score at the time, reaching number 28 in 1976, but we command you to not tap your feet or clap along to it. It will be impossible .
David Essex – ‘A Winter’s Tale’
Songwriting giants Mike Batt and Tim Rice wrote this ballad after David Essex asked them specifically. The sung was a comeback of sorts for Essex, giving him a number three hit in 1983 .
Mike Oldfield – ‘In Dulci Jubilo’
In 1975, Mike Oldfield released an implemental version of the german Christmas carol ‘In Dulci Jubilo ‘, and it ‘s still one of the jauntiest Christmas tunes ever. In case you wondering, ‘In dulci jubilo ‘ is translated as ‘In sweet rejoicing ‘ .
The Waitresses – ‘Christmas Wrapping’
This underestimate song is told from the position of a interfering individual woman trying not to participate in the draining Christmas period, while besides trying to finally agree to a date with a man she met earlier in the year. Songwriter Chris Butler wrote the lyrics in a taxi on the way to the record studio. He explained that the idea came from “ good very much that for years I hated Christmas … Everybody I knew in New York was running around like a bunch of fiends. It was n’t about joy. It was something to cope with. ”
Darlene Love – ‘Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)’
This birdcall was originally included on the 1963 compilation album, A Christmas Gift for You from Philles Records and producer Phil Spector. It was intended for Ronnie Spector of The Ronettes, but according to Darlene Love, Ronnie was not able to put deoxyadenosine monophosphate a lot emotion into the song as needed. rather, Love was brought into the studio apartment, and it became one of her signature tunes .
Joni Mitchell – ‘River’
This folk music sung is about the recent dissolution of a relationship, with Joni longing to escape her feelings. It is thought to be inspired by her relationship with singer Graham Nash .
Read more: The Story of… ‘River’
Although the song is merely set near Christmas time, rather than being about Christmas, it has become a modern Christmas standard .
Jona Lewie – ‘Stop the Cavalry’
Jona Lewie has said that this song was never intended as a Christmas tune, and that it was actually a protest birdcall. however, the pipeline ‘Wish I was at home for Christmas ‘ arsenic good as the brass section band arrangements, made it an accidentally-perfect Christmas start song .
Paul McCartney – ‘Wonderful Christmastime’
It may be one of Sir Paul ‘s cheesiest ever songs, but it ‘s a palpate commodity Christmas authoritative. Paul released the tune in 1979, giving him a UK top 10 reach. While the rest of Wings appear in the knees-up video, they did not actually play on the birdcall .
John Lennon and Yoko Ono – ‘Happy Xmas (War is Over)’
Released in 1971 by Lennon with Yoko Ono and the Plastic Ono Band, this Christmas song is set to the traditional English ballad ‘Skewball ‘ .
Read more: The Story of… ‘Happy Xmas (War is Over)’
It is besides a protest song against the Vietnam War, and has since become a Christmas standard every December, and is often named in polls as a vacation favored around the worldly concern .
Brenda Lee – ‘Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree’
One of the most dateless Christmas songs ever made, Brenda Lee inaugural recorded this gay party anthem in 1958 when she was barely 13 ! It has continued to return to the charts in holocene years, and in 2017 it returned to the top 10 for the beginning time since 1963, reaching number nine .
Chris de Burgh – ‘A Spaceman Came Travelling’
You might not know this song by title entirely, but you ‘ll no doubt know its familiar soaring ‘la la la la ‘ refrain .
Read more: The Story of… ‘A Spaceman Came Travelling’
The song was created after Chris was inspired by a reserve which made him think “ what if the star of Bethlehem was a space craft and what if there is a benevolent being or entity in the universe keeping an eye on the world and our anserine things that we do to each other ? ”
Slade – ‘Merry Xmas Everybody’
IT ‘S CHRISTMAAAS !
That ‘s about all you need to say about this song ! Slade and Noddy Holder ‘s 1973 Christmas number one is a gay firecracker unlike any other, and has sold over 1.2 million copies in the UK alone .
The Pretenders – ‘2000 Miles’
This Christmas ballad is one of the favored Pretenders song, and gave them a numeral 15 shoot in 1984 .
Read more: The Story of… ‘2000 Miles’
While many people believe the birdcall refers to two long-distance lovers who miss each early at Christmas, it was actually written for James Honeyman-Scott, the group ‘s original guitar musician, who died the class before it was released .
Elton John – ‘Step Into Christmas’
curiously, this song was not a huge reach at the time for Elton, entirely reaching number 24 in 1973. however, it has since become a darling, and reached a new acme of 11 in 2017. The track was recorded to echo the celebrated ‘Wall of Sound ‘, made celebrated by manufacturer Phil Spector in the 1960s .
Andy Williams – ‘It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year’
One of the happiest Christmas tunes ever, this was recorded by Andy Williams back in 1963 for his Christmas Album that year. however, it was n’t actually released as a individual at the meter, with the label going for a cover of ‘White Christmas ‘ alternatively. Over fourth dimension, it has become one of the standard Christmas songs of all time .
Shakin’ Stevens – ‘Merry Christmas Everyone’
It may sum up ‘Christmas cheese, but you ca n’t not feel good when you hear this every December .
Read more: The Story of… ‘Merry Christmas Everyone’
Shaky actually delayed releasing this in 1984 as he would have been up against Band Aid and Wham ! It paid off, as he scored the Christmas number one for ’85 .
Carpenters – ‘Merry Christmas Darling’
The lyrics of this sung were written in 1946 by Frank Pooler, who was the choir director at California State University, where Karen and Richard Carpenter were both part of the choir .
Read more: The Story of… ‘Merry Christmas Darling’
In 1966, at Pooler ’ mho request, Richard composed the music, which was first released in 1970. This sparked the interest of a Christmas album by the Carpenters, and in 1978, Christmas Portrait was released .
Band Aid – ‘Do They Know It’s Christmas’
This was the first time the idea of a charity supergroup single came about, after Bob Geldof and Midge Ure saw Michael Buerk ‘s television receiver report on the famine in Ethiopia .
QUIZ: Can you remember who sang what in Band Aid?
Featuring a roll of pop music icons from George Michael to Boy George to Sting, the song became the highest-selling ever in the UK until 1997 .
Wizzard – ‘I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday’
Released the same year as Slade ‘s boyfriend gay glam anthem, Wizzard amazingly merely reached number four at the fourth dimension. however, Roy Wood ‘s tune has become a Christmas staple and has charted every class since downloads and streams were included, reaching angstrom high as 15 in 2017 .
David Bowie and Bing Crosby – ‘Peace on Earth/Little Drummer Boy’
This sung was an early class of a mash-up of sorts, featuring the 1941 Christmas song ‘ The Little Drummer Boy ’ and modern composition ‘ Peace on Earth ’. David Bowie performed the song with Bing Crosby for the latter ’ mho 1977 television receiver limited, filmed barely five weeks before his death. The song was preceded with a short skit in which the copulate exchanged scripted dialogue about what they each do for their family Christmases. Bowie admitted to having alone appeared on the show because “ I equitable knew my mother liked him ” .
Chris Rea – ‘Driving Home for Christmas’
Released in 1988, this Christmas favourite only reach number 53 at the time ! however, it ‘s now a national favorite, and reached a newfangled vertex of 14 in 2017 .
Read more: The Story of… ‘Driving Home for Christmas’ by Chris Rea
Rea said he wrote the song when he needed to get home to Middlesbrough from Abbey Road Studios in London. The inspiration came as he was getting stuck in heavy traffic, while the bamboozle was falling .
Bing Crosby – ‘White Christmas’
The democratic Christmas song that arguably started it all. Written in 1940 by Irving Berlin, the Bing Crosby version became the best-selling individual in the earth of all meter .
Read more: The Story of… ‘White Christmas’
Bing recorded it for the 1942 movie Holiday Inn, and its mixture of somber and images of home became particularly democratic during World War II, helping to cement it as one of the most popular Christmas songs always .
Greg Lake – ‘I Believe in Father Christmas’
Emerson, Lake and Palmer member Greg Lake wrote this song as a anti-Christmas commerce tune .
Read more: The Story of… ‘I Believe in Father Christmas’
He said of the divine guidance behind it : “ For me as a child, it was the ocular effigy of peace on land and goodwill toward men. It was the symbol of generosity and feel good. And that ’ s what I think Christmas is all about ” .
Nat King Cole – ‘The Christmas Song’
Bob Wells and Mel Tormé wrote this song in 1945 during a blistering hot summer. In an feat to “ stay cool by thinking cool ”, the most-performed Christmas birdcall was born. The Nat King Cole Trio recorded it in 1946, and Cole recorded a version in 1953 with a broad orchestra with Nelson Riddle conducting. His 1961 version with Ralph Carmichael is generally considered as authoritative. It has been recorded by countless artists, from Bing Crosby, Frank Sinatra, Andy Williams, Stevie Wonder, Glen Campbell, Paul McCartney and Bob Dylan .
Mariah Carey – ‘All I Want for Christmas is You’
Released in 1994, this modern Christmas classic continues to be a huge hit every year since downloads and streaming were included in the singles chart. With global sales of over 16 million copies, the song remains Mariah ‘s biggest international hit, and is the eleventh best-selling single of all time .
Read more: The Story of… ‘All I Want for Christmas is You’
In character you were wondering, that ‘s Mariah ‘s then-husband Tommy Mottola making a cameo appearance as Santa Claus in the video .
The Pogues and Kirsty MacColl – ‘Fairytale of New York’
Another sung to stall at number two for Christmas ( this time behind Pet Shop Boys ‘ breed of ‘Always on My Mind ‘ ), this family ballad has become a must-listen every single December .
Read more: The Story of… ‘Fairytale of New York’
Frontman Shane MacGowan has said that the birdcall came about after a stake made by the their producer at the time, Elvis Costello, that they would not be able to write a Christmas hit single. He was amiss !
Wham! – ‘Last Christmas’
One of the most popular Christmas pop songs of all time, this chase had to settle for the Christmas act two spot in 1984, as it was besides the year Band Aid released ‘Do They Know It ‘s Christmas ‘ ( which George besides featured on ) .
Read more: The Story of… ‘Last Christmas’ by Wham!
The birdcall returned to number two in 2017, after fans attempted to get it to act one in tribute to George, who died on Christmas Day the former year .