The Art & Science of Sound

The Barely Debatable List Of the Top Ten Worst Holiday Songs

By Jack Sharkey, December 21, 2016

In a season of joy, there is nothing worse than bad music. I would rather get socks and a Walgreen's gift card than listen to bad holiday music. So in the spirit of the season, here are my Top Ten Worst Christmas/Holiday Songs Of All Time. Feel free to disagree, but deep down, you know I've pretty much nailed this.

For reference, please refer to The Top Ten (According To Me) Best Christmas Songs Of All Time.

Honorable Mention

Patsy & Elmo - Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer

I actually think this song is funny, but it's still banned in our house because of my wife's intolerance of the glorification of Grandma Taunting. 

Dishonorable Mention

New Kids On the Block - Funky, Funky Christmas

Just because the word "funky" is in the title twice doesn't make it so. This was slated to come in seventh but alas, I couldn't find a decent public domain video. Lucky New Kids.

10. Wham! - Last Christmas 

First of all, while I'm tooling around the Mall cutting people off and stealing their parking spaces, the last thing I want is some self-centered love-lorn sad person bringing down my seasonal joy. Second of all, watching this video I realize this is like the worst Christmas party ever. Maybe if George didn't sulk so much...

Other Depressing Self-Centered Gems In the Same Category: Blue Christmas, Please Come Home For Christmas, All I Want For Christmas Is My Two Front Teeth.

Cheer Factor: Zilch unless you're into that whole Schadenfreude thing for the holidays.  

Seasonal Awareness: Huge, like traffic and little kid cold germs on department store door handles.

9. Newsong - Christmas Shoes

Warning: The opinions expressed in this review are the author's own and are not reflective or indicative of the feelings and opinions of any other human being, corporation, or group of people anywhere in the world.

Have you ever been munching on a snack in front of the television and one of those shingles commercials comes on? Or maybe the one about some disease that you're absolutely positive you're going to get but when you take the advertised medicine to cure the disease you'll most likely die from the side effects? Here's the conversation that took place while this song was being written:

1st Writer: We need a Christmas song, and it has to be a hit.

2nd Writer: Yeah, but all the good songs have already been written.

3rd Writer: I was watching the Hallmark Channel last night and it seems like you can make a lot of money making people unreasonably sad.

4th Writer: Especially during such a joyous season!

5th Writer: I studied this in college, it's like, you take a happy time and make people sad with a kid in a sad place because no one will ever be mean enough to call us out on it, and they'll all buy the song because otherwise they'll feel guilty and like they're a bad person or something.

6th Writer: Right! We'll make them feel guilty for not loving this song! They'll buy it to prove how wonderful they are!

7th Writer:  I don't care about any of that as long as I can use my cheesy 80's piano synth!

8. Venga Boys - Where Did My Xmas Tree Go?

First of all kids, I have no idea what the hell this song is about. The tree is right behind you, in fact, at one point you wrap toilet paper around it. Just turn around, it's right there!

Christmas Lip Synching Quality: Extremely poor, but I can't figure out if it's me or them that's too obtuse to get it

Jamaican Christmas Authenticity: Mostly condescending

Holiday Joy: Well, they seem to be having a good time at least

7. Trans-Siberian Orchestra - Chistmas Canon Rock

At the risk of losing what few friends I have left (see #9) no list of the Worst Christmas Songs Ever would be complete without a little Trans-Siberian Orchestra. My main problem here was finding a decent quality video of the many songs to choose from. And, you know, just because you sling your black Les Paul between your legs, it doesn't mean you're a rocker.

Seasonal Awareness: You know that guy down the street who has decided to serenade the neighborhood non-stop from November 12th to January 10th with this song and his convulsion-inducing light show? Yeah, that.

Joy Factor: Maybe I just don't drink enough coffee or something, but the last thing I want holiday music to do is make me angrier then I already am whilst trying to find a parking space at the Mall

Goodwill Rating: Could you imagine living across the street from this guy?

6. Destiny's Child - 8 Days of Christmas 

The best part about this song is that they spared us the other four days.

Gifts I Probably Don't Want This Christmas:

8. Chloe shades and a diamond belly ring. I mean, I'll take the shades I guess

7. A back rub and a foot massage. To quote that other famous self-centered Christmas gift recipient - Sally Brown (Charlie's sister): I'll take cash

6. A cropped jacket and dirty denim jeans. I might be mising something, but if my significant other gets me pants from the Goodwill I'm gonna be a little disappointed

5. A poem. Like you could write a poem as good as a professional

4. "A candelit dinner for her and her honey." So she's got this guy cooking her dinner for her and her honey? I know, I broke character there

3. A gift certificate for my favorite CDs. I once gave a CD to a family member. They didn't like the band and asked me for the receipt so they could exhange it for something they liked. I got your Christmas Spirit right here

2. A CLK Mercedes. Look, all of these fancy cars in the driveway with bows on them this time of year. I just can't keep up people 

1. Quality time. Yeah, that's what I'm going to give the people on my list this year - quality time with me. I spend my quality time watching shingles commercials and wishing someone would give me a car with a bow on it.

5. Cyndi Lauper - Christmas Conga

I like Cyndi Lauper. I really do. I mean, I do like Cyndi Lauper.

Seasonal Joy Factor: Bonga, bonga, bonga, do the Christmas Conga

Musical Ethnic Confusion Factor: Extremely high

Queens, New York, Overly Exagerrated Spoken Part Factor: Embarrasingly high  

4. Charo - Mamacita, Donde Esta Santa Claus

I swear, if you people keep stealing my parking spaces at the Mall, I'm going to roll the windows down and blast this song as loud as possible until the Mall cops chase me off the property.

Love Boat Cheese Factor: This song would give Gopher diabetic shock and send Isaac to rehab

Xavier Cugat Grave Spins: 37. Okay, that joke is really just for us old people. All you youngsters (under 50) can Google it.

3. Mariah Carey - All I Want For Christmas

Sometimes when I hear this song I call my dentist and ask if she can do a root canal on me in the next three minutes and fifty-three seconds just to alleviate my sonic displeasure.

Seasonal Sincerity Factor: I'm not sure. Ask Nick Cannon.

Seasonal Ubiquity: Continuously and ceaselessly high, to the point that I've come to believe people think this is a good song or something.

Mall Parking Lot Anger Factor: 12 (on a scale of 1 to 5)

2. Alvin & the Chipmunks - The Christmas Song (Christmas Don't Be Late)

Look you little rodents, Christmas will get here when it gets here.

Holiday Season Extention Desire: This song makes me look forward to late January

Another Reason I Hate This Song: A chipmunk ate all of my pepper and tomato plants last summer. I saw him do it. I will never forgive him, even at Christmas.

And...The Worst Christmas Song Of All Time,,,

1. John Denver - Please Daddy, Dont' Get Drunk This Christmas

Seriously John Denver? Seriously? I mean I get that having a drunk daddy at Christmas is a drag, but you're really bumming me out.

Seasonal Joy Factor: What with a daddy who gets drunk on Christmas, I suppose it could be worse (See #9)

Calling Out Your Dad For Being A Bad Dad At Christmas Rating: A+

Suggested Drink While Listening: Typically I'd have a nice bourbon, but I'm feeling kind of bad about myself right now, so I'll just have milk thanks   

Well, there you have it, the Top Ten Worst Holiday/Christmas Songs Of All Time. I hope this list has brought you great joy and a nice, calm warm holiday feeling. If not, well, imagine how painful it was to compile it.

Anyway, here's hoping your holiday season is magical and filled with love and great music.


P.S. Am I the only person who thinks the Department Store Santa's Elf in A Christmas Story is Billy Corgan from Smashing Pumpkins?

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