Monday has arrived, and it’s December already, people! It’s my birthday week, and Christmas is literally right around the corner… are you ready? Since it’s Monday, you know that Monday means music!
Traditionally, we’ve kept the last month of the year reserved for Christmas music. For the first time, we’re opening the dance floor to theme suggestions for theme weeks but let’s try to keep the theme related to the holidays. This week is simply “Christmas Music” – so grab your favorite Christmas tune(s) and come dance with us, won’t you?
Let’s start with a song that is a perfect one to kick off this favorite season, a song that was written on a baking hot August day, so one of the songwriters lit up a patio fireplace and some candles to get him and his co-writers into the holiday mood. After penning the chorus, they threw in a sackful of festive images into the two verses: Christmas lights, a crackling fireplace, Santa’s footsteps on the roof, and “Jingle Bell Rock.” On the bridge, the duo sings about the anticipation of Christmas:
We’ve been countin’ down the days all year / Raise a glass, it’s finally here
The lyric touches on how is important in these troubled times to have something to look forward to. One of the songwriters said:
“Right now, you can just feel in our writing community how important it is to be writing toward the future because I think everyone has high hopes to kind of come out of the other side of what we’ve all been through with a fresh face, fresh excitement and hope. And you know, as cheesy as it sounds, Christmas is about hope, and it’s about all things new. And so, in a way, that bridge speaks to that.”
Released in 2021, they noted that the start of the holiday season is different for everyone:
“I wanted to have a song that is just like an exclamation – ‘It’s officially Christmas,’ you know, whenever that may be, if it’s the first of December, if it’s the day after Halloween, the day after Thanksgiving. I like to say it’s officially Christmas whenever you feel it in your heart.”
Get ready for some festive fun, here’s Dan + Shay with “Officially Christmas”:
Next up is a fun song that was released last year – let’s give it up for some Elf Awareness with an upbeat song that both adults and kids will enjoy. This four-time Grammy-nominated artist honors the North Pole’s working class with a video that serves as a much-needed tribute to our tiniest holiday heroes.
The visual for the hilarious track finds the artist and his band jamming in a winter wonderland while fighting for the rights of Santa’s pointy-eared helpers.
Get ready for some fun, here’s Crowder with “The Elf Song”:
Next up is another fun song that finds a Grammy-winning pop star teaming up with a talk show host for this duet. The pair performed their comedic holiday song alongside several festively dressed backup singers and a set filled with faux Christmas trees and wrapped presents — a nod to the lyrics comparing a loved one’s presence to a gift.
Come on and wrap me up / Wrap me up, baby / Give me the nice list / I know you’ve been waiting / Yeah, I’m a nice gift / And I know how to shake it
Following the release of the song earlier this month, the talk show host posted to Instagram sharing a video of himself explaining how the duet came to be:
“Meghan Trainor has been a great friend of our show and a great friend of mine, and we all remember her falling at one point, and I laid down next to her on the show (when the singer fell during her 2016 performance of her single “Me Too” on The Tonight Show).
But she’s a great sport, and I loved her even before then, but I just love that she went with it. I go, ‘Do you want to do it again?’ She goes, ‘No. I want you to keep that in and just show everybody that I’m not perfect,’ and I just love that.
We always wanted to do something together, and I go, ‘I kind of have this idea called “Wrap It Up,” like wrapping up a Christmas present.”
He then played the self-described “embarrassing” first recording he sent Trainor, which finds him mumbling through a melody with the lyrics, “Wrap it up.”
“I did not hear back immediately, believe it or not. She eventually got back to me and goes, ‘Jimmy, I like the idea, but here’s kind of what I was working on.
We FaceTimed with each other and wrote the song in an hour and a half. I think it turned out to be a really great song. I love it, so please enjoy it.”
Give a listen to Jimmy Fallon and Meghan Trainor with “Wrap Me Up”:
Last, but certainly not least, is a new song from this artist that was released on November 9th, with the official video released just last week (November 29th). It’s like his first mega-hit has returned with bells on – and this time around, his 2021 seismic hit could prove even more irresistible because of its added ingredient: the holiday spirit.
The song is still completely recognizable, with the melody and rhyming cadence of the original, but all new lyrics now feature a Santa’s sleigh full of holiday references. (And yes, sleigh bells have been added to the accompaniment.) Brainstorming with the song’s original co-writers, the artist said:
“We were just all smiles writing that song. It was kind of a revisit of the day we did the original, and I just love it. It makes me so happy.”
The brand-new music video is equally inspired with the artist’s entire family — including his wife and their six kids, ages 8 to 17 — all having “an absolute blast” in front of the cameras.
Of course, in writing the new version, the aritst made sure there were a few nods to the original. His favorite restaurant chain does make a guest appearance: “Hopin’ Santa gonna leave an Applebees’s gift card.” And “bougie like Natty in the Styrofoam” is traded out for “bougie like blowups in the front yard.”
That line is especially dear to his heart because, years ago, he promised his three daughters and three sons that they each could have their own holiday blowup — if he ever scored a No. 1 song. “Fancy Like,” a multi-week chart-topper, allowed him to make good on his promise, and the family has since gone a bit overboard: Their front yard now proudly sports eight blowups.
The holiday version reflects the artist’s home life, perhaps even more than the original lyrics. The family loves Christmas so much that they keep their fake white-flocked tree up year-round. “It makes me happy just sitting in the living room.”
Without further ado, here’s Walker Hayes with “Fancy Like Christmas”:
That’s a wrap for this week – have a great Monday! See you on the dance floor!
Want to join in the fun? It’s easy – just find a tune that rocks your boat, post it and link up – don’t forget to grab Xmas Dolly…er, um, I mean her button…over at her place here. Check out Xmas Dolly’s sidebar for the random themes we sport each week – and you can always ask for a specific theme of music you like, too. Check out the other music lovahs and let’s jam!