It can be dangerous to admit you love Christmas songs, but at the same time nobody can claim to completely hate them either. Truth be told, the prospect of Mariah Carrey’s “All I Want For Christmas Is You” being played over and over (and over and over and over) again is enough to dread Dec. However, there are multiple tracks that can save the holiday spirit with Rudolph-like reverence. We at the Navigator have compiled a list of some of our favourite whimsical, nostalgic, and damn-sexy-Dutch numbers that might help to kick-start your Christmas spirit. Or else drive you to your rum-and-eggnog with a vengeance.
“Boys and Girls (Xmas Time Love)” by The Cheeky Girls with Andy Newton-Lee
Romanian twin sisters Gabriella and Monica Irimia make up the British-based pop group who, in this catchy catastrophe of a holiday song, collaborate with British soap-star-turned-singer Andy Newton-Lee. The video is complete with speedo-clad boys performing synchronised swim routines, group choreographed arm movements, and Newton-Lee’s terrifyingly intense eye contact with the camera. One might wonder where the “Xmas” factors in, but after listening to the lyrics (“Everybody, Christmastime love/You’ll remember me/Everybody, Christmastime love/Be my lover, be my baby”) there is no doubt The Cheeky Girls have done their best to show us what the holiday spirit means to them.
“The Most Wonderful Day of the Year” from NBC’s Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
The stop motion animation Christmas special has aired at least once every year since its release in 1964. Nearly everyone has heard the Burl Ives version of the Rudolph anthem, but the lesser-known classic sung by residents of The Island of Misfit Toys, such as Charlie-In-The-Box, Bird Fish and their equally troubled friends, is much more interesting than the reindeer epic we’ve had memorized since childhood. The video shows the toys dancing around with Rudolph and his friends, in wonderfully simplistic animation, singing their slightly depressing but utterly charming tune: “How’d you like to be a spotted elephant?/Or a choo-choo with square wheels on your caboose!/ Or a water pistol that shoots jelly?/We’re all misfits!” Beware: the cast of Glee did do a cover of the song, so, when listening, pick your version wisely.
“Tell Me A Story” by Hilary Duff and Lil’ Romeo
This one is for all the ’90s babies. Today, where pop music is driven more by shock factor than talent, where stars get our attention by licking glitter off dirty surfaces or wearing telephones on their heads, the innocence of this song is welcome and heartwarming. Duff sings the chorus with Lizzie McGuire cuteness and Lil’ Romeo’s rap is a slightly gangster version of “’Twas The Night Before Christmas.” The video shows the two of them in the recording studio, Duff wearing cargo pants and a chain, Romeo sporting an oversized jersey and some bling, performing as it snows (indoors). While the lyrics aren’t inspiring and the filmography isn’t anything special, the overall experience is nostalgic and fairly sweet. If that’s not enough, the track provides a good jumping off point for the always welcome “kids these days” rant.
“Twelve Days of Hockey” presented by Ron Mclean in 1987
For those who can keep up with the 1980 NHL references, this tune might curb some of the lockout sting, if only temporarily. The lyrics are based around hockey icons of the time, most of whom are still relevant in the sports world today: “On the seventh day of hockey, Don Cherry gave to me, seven silky suits…and a chance to play with Wayne Gretzky.” The video shows some memorable and entertaining moments from classic hockey history, including shots of known officials, coaches, and managers as well as some great highlights that are worth watching; Christmas context or not.
“Christmas is Here” by Bearforce 1
This holiday medley, sung by a gay pop band from the Netherlands, Bearforce 1, has it all. The fabulous Dutchmen incorporate a few classic carols with their own original material, “Christmas is here/And it’s only just begun/Time for merry fun/Yum-tum-tum hey!/Come on and cheer/Don’t forget tell everyone/Sing with Bearforce 1/ Ting-ting horray!” The video shows the group enjoying a variety of wintertime activities, such as snowball fights and sledding, while also dancing in red snow pants and white tank tops. The song is upbeat, positive, and irresistibly cheerful, and the video is guaranteed to make you smile because Bearforce 1’s Christmas spirit is contagious. We encourage you to watch all the way to the end, as there is some ab-flashing you probably don’t want to miss.
We would love to hear your feedback, along with your own holiday song suggestions, on our facebook page. Happy holidays!