A Twist on Holiday Hits: The ‘Not-Your-Average’ Christmas Song

Christmas song. Every December, the same old tunes make their way back, giving that classic holiday vibe. You can’t go without Wham!’s Last Christmas or Brenda Lee’s Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree—it’s just tradition. And now, even the oldies are making a comeback on the charts, like Mariah Carey’s All I Want for Christmas Is You, rocking the Billboard Hot 100 after 25 years in the game.

Crafting the Perfect Holiday Tune

There’s no secret recipe for a top Christmas song, but throw in some sleigh bells and a touch of Phil Spector’s “Wall of Sound” style, and you’re getting close. Phil’s 1963 album A Christmas Gift for You is a goldmine of holiday feels. Darlene Love’s Christmas (Baby Please Come Home) from that album’s been redone by big names like U2 and Michael Bublé. And it’s inspired hits like Wizzard’s I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday or Kelly Clarkson’s Underneath the Tree.

The Surprise Hit: Christmas Wrapping

But in the midst of all that jolliness, there’s The Waitresses’ 1981 jam, Christmas Wrapping. This cool new wave band from Ohio might not be on everyone’s playlist, but this sassy, anti-Christmas track has crept into our hearts. Patty Donahue croons, “Merry Christmas, Merry Christmas – but I think I’ll miss this one this year,” setting the vibe. It’s kinda like The Pogues’ Fairytale of New York, minus the iffy language.

The Anti-Cheese Gem

Unlike Fairytale of New York, Christmas Wrapping keeps it PG with a touch of anti-festivity. Music guru Rhian Daly calls it “cool and different but still totally festive” with its jingly intro and slick guitar riffs. Hugh McIntyre from Forbes adds it’s goofy and fun, a vibe that’s stayed cool through the years, unlike your usual holiday tunes.

Real Holiday Vibes

Christmas Wrapping doesn’t follow the usual holiday path. It kicks off with a “Bah, humbug!” and sticks to that tone, hitting home with anyone feeling the stress of the season. Donahue sings about needing a break and wanting a solo Christmas—totally relatable stuff.

Everyday Holiday Feels

McIntyre reckons this song clicks because it’s not all snow and cozy firesides like in those typical holiday tracks. Instead, it captures the real struggles we face during the supposed “season of joy.” Think more “oops, forgot something for dinner” than picture-perfect scenes.

The Unexpected Twist

The song’s plot takes a wild turn when Donahue heads to a late-night grocery store and bumps into an old flame. It sparks a lost romance, turning the “meh” holiday mood into genuine festive joy by the end.

The Backstory

The song’s brainchild, Chris Butler from The Waitresses, wasn’t too keen on making a holiday track. But he poured all his freelance writer woes into the lyrics, and voila! Christmas Wrapping was born. Its catchy chorus and rap-inspired title add to its cool factor.

A Mix of Bitter and Sweet

Despite its start as a quirky hit by a not-so-famous band, Christmas Wrapping lives on. Even though Donahue and Mars Williams, who played the iconic saxophone riff, aren’t around, their spirit’s still alive in a song that sneaks onto the charts every December in the UK.

A Timeless Tune

McIntyre’s betting this funky anthem will keep rising, thanks to streaming playlists and nods in pop culture, like its feature on TV’s Glee. It’s the underdog holiday anthem that stands tall among the classics we all love. –COIN303