All I want for Christmas is my two front teeth...
So I can wish you Merry Chris-ssh-mas!
Are you old enough to remember that song?
I just loved it when I was a kid. I still hum it when Christmas is nigh.
What are your favourite Christmas songs? Songs that take you back to your childhood, when Christmas was magical. Tunes that make you burst into song...
Let me tell you about my all-time favourite Christmas tunes.
Singing along around the family radio
was a custom held dear by many families
At Christmas we sang all of our favourites, including my top 10 list
(You can see what's on the list further down the article.)
No TV, just the radio or musicians
That's how we amused ourselves in the fifties
Impromptu concerts when the relatives came to visit were a popular way to fill in an afternoon.
At Christmas this was especially true, because you saw many family members only at Chrismas at your grandparents' house.
One song we all loved to hear and sing was:
All I want for Christmas is my two front teeth, from Spike Jones
The original 1948 version - with Spike Jones and his City Slickers
Alvin and the Chipmunks - made a version too
Spike Jones fans
My uncle (godfather) and my mother were two of his greatest
Who was he?
Quote from Wikipedia:
Lindley Armstrong "Spike" Jones (December 14, 1911 - May 1, 1965) was a popular musician and bandleader specializing in performing satirical arrangements of popular songs.
Ballads and classical works receiving the Jones treatment would be punctuated with gunshots, whistles, cowbells and ridiculous vocals.
Through the 1940s and early 1950s, the band recorded under the title Spike Jones and his City Slickers and toured the USA and Canada under the title The Musical Depreciation Revue.
Image courtesy Wikimedia Commons
More about Spike Jones - and the City Slickers
at these links
- Pynchon - Music: Spike Jones
Mindful Mindlessness Spike Jones Information Spike Jones was quite an interesting figure, a musical comedian working in the vein of the Big Band sound in the 30s and 40s. Assembling a group of top notch musicians who were never averse to
- Spike Jones: "And the Winner Is ... Feedlebomb'"
Tuxedo Junction is George Spink's big band web site featuring articles by Spink and other big band fans about Benny Goodman, Count Basie, Glenn Miller, Duke Ellington, George Shearing, and many more. Tuxedo Junction also offers plenty of big band mus
- Spike Jones music
Download clips of the music of Spike Jones here
Top 10 favourite Christmas songs - from my childhood
Some are still my very favourite even at almost 71!
- All I want for Christmas
- I want a hippopotomus for Christmas
- I saw mommy kissing Santa Claus
- Frosty the Snowman
- The Star of Bethlehem (which I learned to sing at around 15 as a soprano soloist)
- White Christmas (good ol' Bing)
- Silent Night
- Santa Claus is coming to town
- Jingle Bells (Of course!)
- Scarlet Ribbons
I have an original 78 of this - from my uncle's collection
Who was Jimmy Boyd?
January 9, 1939 - March 7, 2009
Then[when?] Jimmy recorded the song "I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus" for Columbia Records, when he was 12 years and 11 months old. Even in those days of limited media, it became a record industry phenomenon, selling over two and a half million records in its first week's release. Jimmy's name became an international household word, and he skyrocketed to the status of a major star. Columbia Records execs were baffled at the song's popularity. They had already presented Jimmy with two gold records. (In the days before the Grammy Award existed, gold records were effectively the Grammys, and they were actually real gold). Jimmy's record went to number one on the charts again the following year at Christmas, and went on to sell again and again every Christmas. Today on the internet it sells worldwide to new generations, and has reportedly sold over 60,000,000 records since its initial release.
Jimmy loved and owned horses, so Columbia presented him with a silver mounted saddle. Inscribed in the silver plate on the back of the saddle were the words, "Presented by Columbia Records to Jimmy Boyd commemorating his 3,000,000 record of 'I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus'".
When first released, Jimmy's record was banned in Boston by the Catholic Church on the grounds it mixed sex with Christmas. Boyd made worldwide news at thirteen years old when he went to Boston and met with the leaders of the Church to explain the song to them. The following Christmas the ban was lifted by the Catholic Church.
Between February 1953 and November 1954, Boyd made five appearances on the Ed Sullivan Show. In that era, an appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show (or being introduced in the audience as many film stars, famous athletes etc. were), was considered by the entertainment industry and the public alike to be the pinnacle of success. In one of Boyd's five appearances, a popular singer of the time, Gisele MacKenzie, was bumped off the show to put Jimmy on. He was in New York on his way to Montreal for a concert. After the show, Boyd was told they had bumped MacKenzie and was very upset. He went to Ed Sullivan and personally asked him to please promise to re-book Gisele. In the same year and the years that followed Boyd made multiple appearances on Perry Como's Kraft Music Hall, The Doris Day Show, The Bing Crosby Show, The Bob Hope Show, The Patti Page Show, Dave Garroway, The Merv Griffin Show, The Tonight Show, Shindig, American Bandstand and other programs throughout the United States and Canada.
Boyd would record several number one records: teaming up with Frankie Laine on "Tell Me a Story" (written by Terry Gilkyson) and "The Little Boy And The Old Man", and with Rosemary Clooney on "Dennis the Menace."
78 wax version - from Amazon
Listen to some fun songs - from past Christmas eras
Scarlet Ribbons - Doris Day's beautiful voice
The Star of Bethlehem by Adams - a beautiful song
I can be heard singing this all around the place every year around December
I used to love this one... - ...but just imagine a hippo in your stocking!
Nat King Cole - sings Frosty for you
© 2009 Jan T Urquhart Baillie