Christmas songs and their popularity has to be one of the most debated topics of all time. It’s enough to split any room of party-goers, office workers or those on a road trip. There are those on the opinion of “as soon as it’s December, time to crack out the classics” and those that groan in despair if they even hear one twinkling bar of “all I want for Christmas.” Whichever side of the fence you’re on, as we get deeper into December, there’s no escaping the festive tunes, so if you have to pick one for your Christmas party karaoke, you want to make sure it’s a banger. Here we take a look at some of the best (and worst) Christmas songs.
1. ‘All I Want For Christmas Is You’ by Mariah Carey
Whether you love it or love to hate it (while simultaneously humming the chorus under your breath) there’s no denying the popularity of Mariah Carey’s “all I want for Christmas is you.” This tune was first released in 1995 and while it steadily gained popularity year on year, many are surprised to know it didn't top the US charts until 2019 or the UK ones until 2020.
2. Last Christmas by Wham
There have been a number of covers of Wham’s Last Christmas, but none quite work as well as the original 1986 hit. While it's actually a bit of a morbid track about having your heart crushed at Christmas, it's catchy, great to sing at the top of your voice and features some unforgettable knitwear choices in the video. If you’re looking for a karaoke classic, this one will tick all the boxes.
3. Fairytale of New York by The Pogues
Is it even Christmas if you aren’t regaled of the sad tale of Kirsty MacColl’s death from a powerboat as the Fairytale of New York plays in the background? This track has received a fair amount of controversy in recent years thanks to some of its more controversial lyrics, but if you can see through the profanity, heartbreak, hope and despair there’s no arguing it’s up there with the classics. Plus, if you’re feeling bitter about someone this festive season, it gives you an acceptable outlet to vent your feelings of grief without it seeming too personal.
1. Grandma got run over by a reindeer by Elmo and Patsy
Whoever thought the notion of singing about a Grandmother that got knocked down by Santa Claus’s reindeer was a good idea, clearly had some warped idea about the festive season. With lyrics such as “When we found her Christmas morning at the scene of the attack, she had hoof prints on her forehead and incriminating Claus marks on her back” it’s a far cry from a tune about getting together with family at Christmas. Morbid, depressing and one you don’t want your kids to start singing next to their Grandpa over the turkey and cranberry sauce.
2. I saw Mommy kissing Santa Claus by The Jackson 5
While the tune of this is pretty catchy, if you look at this song a little closely, it has all the makings of a hefty dose of childhood trauma. Sung by a young child all about how we went downstairs in the middle of the night excited to see Santa only to find him in an embrace with his mother - and therefore cheating on his Dad. “Then I saw Mommy tickle Santa Claus (tickle, tickle, Santa Claus), underneath his beard so snowy white, oh, what a laugh it would have been, if daddy had only seen, Mommy kissing Santa Claus last night.”
3. Do they know it's Christmas by Band Aid
The intent behind this song was to raise money for the famine in Ethiopia. While the sentiment might have been in the right place, its execution isn't quite so fortunate. Geldof himself called it one of "the worst songs in history" and it has come under regular criticism due to its stereotypical portrayal of Ethiopians. As far as Christmas songs go, this one doesn’t hit the mark.
Christmas is a time for festive cheer and these are the songs you might want to add to (or take off) your Christmas party playlist. If you’re heading to a party, Christmas karaoke is a real must - be sure to check out Karavanaoke for any festive event to really take it up a notch. Karavanaoke is a pop up karaoke in a caravan that is fully loaded with thousands of tracks (including a host of festive tunes) lighting, lasers, haze machine, a dress up box and so much more. What songs will you be singing along to this year?