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Happy Holiday/The Holiday Season

Words & Music: Irving Berlin (Happy Holiday), Kay Thompson (The Holiday Season)

OK, first off we need to clear up a couple of things: First of all, you don’t need to get your eyes or your laptop checked. It really is snowing on AMB. Courtesy of WordPress, the forecast is for a light sprinkling of digital snow through the beginning of January.

Secondly, yes my #11 Best Christmas Song is Andy William’s medley Happy Holiday/The Holiday Season. I love this crazy song!

Growing up we had some Andy Williams records at the house, my sisters liked him and he was acceptable to my parents, unlike those long haired wild Beatles. Let me tell you something, you haven’t heard MacArthur Park until you’ve heard AW’s version of it. For some reason though, I don’t think we had his Christmas album from 1963; so for all these years I’ve been hearing this song when the lite rock stations switch format to all Christmas all the time, but I didn’t know it was ol’ Andy. Having spent quite a few of my formative years in Las Vegas I imagined a lounge singer type sitting on a stool, Dean Martin or Sammy Davis, Jr. style with the mike in one hand, a drink in the other, and a cigarette nearby. The lyrics even sound like something a swinging Rat Pack wannabe would dig:

It’s the holiday season
With the whoop-de-do and hickory dock
And don’t forget to hang up your sock
‘Cause just exactly at 12 o’clock
He’ll be coming down the chimney
Coming down the chimney
Coming down the chimney, down!

That swinging Santa is one hepcat, ya dig? So keep your naughty business on the down-low, kids so the big man will be bringin’ you lots of groovy toys.

So imagine my surprise when I found out that the singer was good old, clean cut Andy Williams. Not that AW was a choir boy, remember Claudine Longet? But he certainly wasn’t in the Vegas Rat Pack leagues. Still, the song is a classic, starting with Irving Berlin’s old chestnut from the movie Holiday Inn and combining it with the new song The Holiday Season by Kay Thompson, a pretty hip lady herself.

It’s the holiday season
And Santa Claus has got a toy
For every good girl and good little boy
He’s a great big bundle of joy
He’ll be coming down the chimney, down
Coming down the chimney, down

How can you not love the words “Coming down the chimney, down?” Just in case you were unclear about the direction that Santa will be coming. I defy you to not love it!

So enjoy the digital snow, sit on your stool with a whiskey sour, light up a Pall Mall, and swing baby. Hang a peppermint stick on the tree for old St. Nick and may your every wish come true.

I included a couple of versions here, this is the song from The Andy Williams Christmas Album.

This is the Williams Brothers and the Osmond Brothers from a 1971 Christmas special. It’s out of sync though, so don’t watch it too closely or you’ll get a headache.

2010 Update:

Looks like the Williams/Osmonds video above went bye-bye, so I found a slightly different version (“Me oh my, everybody’s gay.”):

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2 thoughts on “The 12 Good Songs of Christmas: #11

  1. So much fun to see the old cornball specials! The Osmonds look like ventriloquist dummies sitting on those stools with their wooden grins! Hahahaha! And I really could not get past the outfits… *shudder* Please tell me us regular folk didn’t dress like this in the ’70’s!

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