Come on Eileen, Grandpa and all the family because it’s time for the best 80’s Christmas songs.
Wham! – Last Christmas
Enya – Oiche Chiun
John Mellencamp – I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus
The Waitresses – Christmas Wrapping
Chris Rea – Driving Home For Christmas
Whitney Houston – Do You Hear What I Hear?
The Pretenders – 2000 Miles
Mel & Kim – Rockin’ Around The Christmas Tree
Freiheit – Keeping The Dream Alive
The Cocteau Twins – Frosty The Snowman
The Eurythmics – Winter Wonderland
Queen – Thank God It’s Christmas
Frankie Goes To Hollywood – The Power of Love
Run-DMC – Christmas in Hollis
U2 – Christmas (Baby, Please Come Home)
The Pogues, Kirsty Maccoll – Fairytale of New York
Jona Lewis – Stop The Cavalry
Jon Anderson – Easier Said Than Done
Paul McCartney – Pipes of Peace
Bing Crosby, David Bowie – The Little Drummer Boy/Peace On Earth
It might have been the decade that fashion forgot but the 1980’s were a golden period for Christmas songs. In fact it is safe to say this period is up there with the initial surge of great Christmas music from the 1940’s and 1960’s. The songs may sound very much of its time but that doesn’t stop us from singing these tunes from the top of our lungs during the season. And there’s no greater festive anthem than the tale of ragged love called ‘Fairytale of New York’ by the Pogues. The London based Irish band pack more drama, redemption and downright wonderful musicianship into a few minutes than most bands do in their whole career.
The big hitters in this collection are undoubtedly Band-Aid’s ‘Do They Know It’s Christmas’ and Wham’s story of lost relationships ‘Last Christmas’ but there is so much more to enjoy too. A compilation called ‘A Very Special Christmas’ (in aid of the Special Olympics) yielded a sprinkling of delights in 1987 all by itself, with U2’s rendition of Darlene Love’s ‘Christmas (Baby, Please Come Home)’ perhaps the highlight.
Elsewhere there are tales of Christmas in the trenches (‘Stop The Cavalry’), long journeys back home (‘Driving Home For Christmas’) and events in the ghetto over the holidays courtesy of Run-DMC’s genre busting ‘Christmas in Hollis’. With so much variety you’ll hardly have time to catch your breath but then Bing Crosby and David Bowie managed to capture the essence of laidback seasonal charm on their classic duet together ‘The Little Drummer Boy/Peace On Earth’. Not sure if homely can ever be used to describe a piece of music but for some reason that appears to be the best description for Bing and Bowie’s collaboration.
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