About three years ago a friend of mine was discussing Christmas songs with me. He had recently read an editorial in the paper about someone’s opinion of the worst Christmas songs. My friend said the commentator had included songs such as John Lennon’s “So this is Christmas” and the infamous Band Aid song “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” (That’s the song about how there won’t be snow in Africa for Christmas, I guarantee you’ve heard it.) I told him that I kind of liked those songs, but none of them were my favorite. He asked what my favorite song was. I told him.
I’ve always liked Christmas music, and I don’t mean the classic carols, I mean everything else (though, that does include the carols when they are done right). It’s a great way to celebrate the holiday, it makes the season fun, and these songs are something you really only listen to during the season, so they never really get old.
My favorite Christmas song goes back to when I believed in Santa. You may recall from my last post that this was most of my young life, but this song goes back to when I was very young. Let me recall how I was introduced to it. I was in the mall with my mom, and she was looking around at stuff that I wasn’t really interested in. Things like ornaments and whatnot. We weren’t looking at toys, I know that, because my mom would never have bought a toy that was supposedly from Santa while I was there. Well, I was basically bored out of my mind, and then I heard it.
The tune was different from all the other songs that were playing on the intercom. It was bouncy, it was fun, and while I didn’t know much about sex appeal at the time, there was something about the female voice that started singing, that made me realize that cooties were more of a myth than Santa Claus. The first line was, and you may have guess this already, “Santa Baby…”
Right away, I knew this song was what Christmas was all about. Christmas was about getting stuff. That’s how I saw Christmas as a kid. This song satisfied my whole conception of Christmas. It was also a fun and sexy song. There were a lot of things mentioned in the song that I didn’t understand. I didn’t know what sable was, or Tiffany’s, and I still don’t understand how a duplex could fit in a stocking, but I knew one thing. Everything in this song was expensive, and the girl singing wanted it all, and I liked that about the girl singing. She was like me, only her toys were different.
The version of the song I heard that day was probably sung by Madonna. I don’t know for sure, but it was in the 80s, so the timing is right. And while there have been other female singers to sing this song, many of them very similar in style to Madonna, I don’t think any of them are quite as classic as the Madonna version.
I still love the song. It’s still my favorite. Though, for different reasons than when I was a kid. I like it today for three main reasons. Firstly, because I understand that the song is tongue-in-cheek. It is a criticism of the commercialism of the holiday season. The second reason I like it, is because it is such a fun song (this is one of the reasons I liked it when I was young, as well). Thirdly, and most importantly, because every time I tell someone this is my favorite song, they look at me like I’m the weirdest person they’ve ever met. Some try to tell me it’s a stupid song, others try to explain to me that this song is exactly why Christmas is so commercialized these days. I like to see their reactions. I don’t offer any excuses for why I like it. I just do, and there is no reason to defend my taste in holiday music.
That’s all I really have to say about “Santa Baby”, but check back later, because, soon, I will have some comments on what I consider to be the worst Christmas song of all time. A song so bad, that it has caused some people to want to commit murder. A song so bad, that some people have attempted suicide because it started playing on the radio. A song so bad that it has almost single-handedly destroyed Christmas. A song so bad that I have never met anyone that likes it, and yet, for some reason, it still gets played on the radio, year after year.