From classics like Silent Night to novelty hits like The Chipmunks Song, if there’s one thing all music lovers and audiophiles can agree on, it has to be that Holiday and Christmas music is the greatest music ever made. Don’t believe me? History, record sales, and chart success all indicate that the month-long musical reign over our ears and airwaves is a major part of Santa’s ever-expanding commercialization and merchandising efforts–better known as the “Christmas Creep.”
1857 – “Jingle Bells” Is The First Holiday Song
Originally written to celebrate the harvest and performed at Thanksgiving celebrations, the song “Jingle Bells” is considered to be the oldest secular Christmas song. Interestingly, “Jingle Bells” also holds the distinction of being the first song performed in space, when Gemini VI astronauts Wally Schirra and Tom Stafford, having just completed the first space “rendezvous” with Gemini VII, reported seeing an unidentified object on a “polar orbit” on Christmas Eve 1965. Schirra and Stafford then played the song on a small harmonica and bells they had stowed on board. These musical instruments can now be seen at the National Air and Space Museum in Washington, DC.
1906 – “O Holy Night” Is The First Radio Song
On Christmas Eve 1906 in Brant Rock, Massachusetts, Reginald Fessenden broadcast the first voice and music over radio airwaves, serenading ships sailing along the Atlantic coast with a violin and vocal performance of “O Holy Night” performed by Fessenden and readings from the Bible. Fessenden’s broadcast was repeated on New Year’s Eve that year and was reportedly heard as far south as the West Indies.
1942 – Bing Sings “White Christmas”
In 1940, Irving Berlin, also author of “God Bless America,” wrote the single greatest song in music history, “White Christmas“. In 1942, crooner Bing Crosby recorded the quintessential version and the rest is history. Crosby’s version became the greatest selling single of all time with more than 50 million copies sold. “White Christmas” is also the only song to reach #1 on the Billboard charts three different years and holds the record for making nine unique runs on the charts.
As a special treat, Dice has created a playlist of some of his favorite songs from the season! Enjoy!
What is your favorite seasonal song, Trivia fans? Let us know in the comments!