Christmas songs are like Marmite; you either love them or you hate them. Whichever side of the fence you’re on you’ll inevitably know every word! In this list I have put together my take on the top five Christmas songs of all time.
In at number five, is the infamous All I want for Christmas is you by Mariah Carey (1994). This is a highly overplayed song, coming from experience on a nine hour shift in a supermarket with it on a loop! Even so, this is one of the essentials for any Christmas party. It has also become, in my opinion, a guilty pleasure for many (myself included!). The catchy lyrics, melody and Mariah’s high notes have made this one of the bestselling modern additions to Christmas songs, and probably the most murdered song on Christmas karaoke!
At number four has to be Last Christmas by Wham! Released in the eighties, Last Christmas is still a popular song today. Despite having been covered numerous times, even having a dance version, the original still tops them all. The lyrics aren’t typically Christmassy, one criticism of mine being they are actually a bit sad, but the lack of “cheese” is a refreshing change from the usual offerings at Christmas time.
At number three, is Happy Xmas (war is over) by John Lennon and Yoko Ono. This is a beautiful song, representing a more serious side of Christmas. The opening line being “So this is Christmas and what have you done” makes this a thought provoking song when you really listen, reminding us the real meaning of Christmas. The video contrasts to the song and is really hard hitting and unexpected for a festive song, showing images from developing countries and children in war torn countries as a sharp contrast to how most children in our country will be celebrating Christmas. This song brings attention to people less fortunate and reminds us about the struggles of people around the world at this time of year.
A lighter hearted song than number three, number two is a personal favourite I wish it could be Christmas everyday by Wizzard. Personally, I like this song because it inspires happiness and good memories of Christmas. Although it was beaten by Slade for the Christmas number one and only ever reached number four, I feel like this is the better song from the two bands. The glam rock band Wizzard created a holiday tune with dramatic music and an upbeat tempo, just as a Christmas song should be.
Finally, at number one is the brilliant Fairytale of New York by Kirsty McColl and The Pogues. This Irish folk rock style ballad is a brilliantly refreshing change from the usual Christmas song, possibly why it has had such longevity. The lyrics are sometimes bitter and provides a humorous, satirical view on Christmas especially with the line “Happy Christmas your arse, I pray God it’s our last”. This song shows how Christmas isn’t always perfect in a fantastic way, making it, in my opinion, one of the best Christmas songs ever and I believe it will be for years to come due to its originality and excellent catchy lyrics, making it known to people young and old.
So that concludes my top five Christmas songs, although there will be many more additions to the legions of festive tunes the original old songs are definitely the best when it comes to Christmas! Hope you have a very merry Christmas, and a happy new year!