The Five Most Horrendous Christmas Songs

I love Christmas music. Most years, I start listening to Christmas music right after Thanksgiving, but I see no problem listening any time of the year. (You can read my thoughts about Christmas music here.) So, while it’s true I love Christmas music, that does not mean I love all Christmas music. (For proof of that, read my brutal takedown of “Away in a Manger” from a few years ago.) No, not all Christmas music is created equal. In fact, some songs are so bad, so terrible, they need to be removed from society forever. Here are the five most horrendous Christmas songs that need to disappear immediately.

Do They Know It’s Christmas?

I avoid politics in public discussion as much as possible. And, at Rambling Ever On, we try to avoid hot-button topics. But, this song is so loaded with Western white guilt I can’t ignore it. It’s pretentious, condescending, and patronizing to an entire continent of people. Plus, the melody is unmemorable and the production is trite. It’s time to say goodbye to “Do They Know It’s Christmas? for the rest of time.

Wonderful Christmastime

Paul McCartney has created a lot of great music in his life. But, even the great ones stumble from time to time. And “Wonderful Christmastime” is as big of a face-plant as I’ve ever heard. Musically, it’s as if McCartney took three or four versions of the song, had a hard time deciding which one he liked best, so he put them all in a Casio keyboard, and it vomited out the results. Not all music has to be soothing or pleasing to the ear, but if you write a song called, “Wonderful Christmastime”, it better not sound significantly worse than when my 12 year old goofs around on GarageBand on his iPad.

The Christmas Shoes

This one is too easy. 90% of the world hates this song. But, I couldn’t leave it off the list. It’s that bad. It’s so treacly and pandering that it belongs on all such lists. There are numerous logical and theological reasons why the song is so terrible, but others have covered that ground already so I won’t belabor the point.

Santa Baby

Nothing speaks to the spirit of Christmas quite like a song from the perspective of a greedy, vacuous, manipulative seductress attempting to use her womanly charms to convince Santa to give her a bunch of high-priced stuff. Santa needs to drop a bag full of coal on this woman’s head and urge her to rethink her life and priorities.

Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer

I know. It’s meant to be silly and we shouldn’t take everything so seriously. But, man, this song is so morbid if you think about for more than two seconds! Grandma gets drunk on eggnog, runs out of medication, staggers out of the house and is killed by one of Santa’s reindeer. There are even hoofprints on her forehead! I mean, what in the world?!? And this is a song we sing during the season of the year when we celebrate the birth of Jesus? I don’t think so.


Closing thoughts

Those are my top five. Or bottom five, depending on how you look at it. I would love to know what your least favorite Christmas songs are. Post them in the comment section or on one of our social media accounts. Merry Christmas and demand more from your Christmas music this year!

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Phill Lytle

I love: Jesus, my wife, my kids, my family, my friends, my church, J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, 80s rock, the Tennessee Titans, Brandon Sanderson books, Band of Brothers, Thai food, music, books, movies, TV, writing, pizza, vacation, etc...

9 thoughts on “The Five Most Horrendous Christmas Songs

  • December 3, 2021 at 11:06 am
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    I’ll take that list and add “Santa Likes To Rock It Like a Boogie Woogie Choo Choo Train”

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    • December 3, 2021 at 2:09 pm
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      Yes, add it!

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  • December 3, 2021 at 11:49 am
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    I totally agree with most of those (especially the first one – Hey, don’t you feel guilty for celebrating when there are starving people in Africa?! We’re going to make a song that’s not really about Christmas but will throw in a reference to make sure it gets played at that time!). I’ve remarked several times about how “Wonderful Christmastime” could only be a hit for someone who had already had a lot of hits and didn’t need to try anymore. Though I agree with the shaky theology argument against “The Christmas Shoes”, I have a hard time hating the song after hearing Newsong talk in concert about how it unexpectedly became a hit the year it was released. It’s almost at a “That Thing You Do” level of inspirational story.

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  • December 3, 2021 at 1:44 pm
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    I can pretty much agree with your list.

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  • December 3, 2021 at 4:42 pm
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    I want a hippopotamus for Christmas should be on the list.

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  • December 4, 2021 at 6:30 am
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    Thank you for including Wonderful Christmastime. That song is awful. Since the radio stations play it so often, I thought it was just me. Thank you for validating my position!

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  • December 5, 2021 at 3:57 pm
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    I guess I have had a special pleasure of never hearing “Do They Know It’s Christmas?”, but I’ll take your word for it. Totally agree with Phill on “Wonderful Christmastime”, but I’m more inclined to agree with Joel’s comments above on “Christmas Shoes”.

    I would add “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” to your list, assuming we can even call that a Christmas song.

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    • August 9, 2022 at 2:49 pm
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      It’s popular & PC to rag on Baby It’s Cold Outside now. While I’m not necessarily a fan of the song, the reasons for opposing it seem to be more a political thing as much as other motives….

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  • August 9, 2022 at 2:48 pm
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    Pretty Paper by Roy Orbison – Besides his annoying wailing voice, that is perhaps the MOST depressing “Christmas” song of ALL TIME (I admit that I am NOT a RO fan….)

    Reply

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