The other day I outlined my top 12 Christmas songs for 2017.  In this article I want to highlight my 12 least liked Christmas songs.

That doesn’t mean they are bad songs.  In fact, there are versions of quite a few of these songs that I do like.  Overall, though, I don’t like these songs, and if most versions come on the radio or streaming service, I’d skip them.

So, here are my 12 most disliked Christmas songs (in no particular order) and the reasons why.

Note: The videos and links are to versions I prefer. In some cases, however, it was tough to find one.

1. “Joy To The World”

Wait, what?!  It’s a traditional Christmas song!

Traditional?  Yes.  Christmas?  No.

Ever listened to the lyrics?  They don’t describe the Incarnation.  Rather, they are about the Second Coming based on Psalm 98.

As Crossway put it, “Did you know that ‘Joy to the World’ was not written as a Christmas carol?  In its original form, it had nothing to do with Christmas.”  Nevertheless, we’ve taken a Second Coming song, misunderstood the lyrics, and transformed it into a Christmas carol.

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2. “Santa Claus Is Coming To Town”

I remember an old Calvin & Hobbes comic that had an interesting twist on this popular classic:

Calvin and Hobbes by Bill Watterson, originally published December 17, 1987.

Inspired by that interpretation, I created a meme revising some of the lyrics (words set to the tune of the verses):

Humorous take on a the popular Christmas song, "Santa Claus Is Coming To Town."

Humorous take on a the popular Christmas song, “Santa Claus Is Coming To Town.”

Regardless of the creepiness of the song, it always sounds like a pre-schooler’s carol, at least the way it’s often performed.  As a result, this song doesn’t work for me.

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3. “Little Drummer Boy”

I don’t like this song because it’s a new parent’s worst nightmare.  Here’s how I previously described it:

As a parent, I find “Little Drummer Boy” puzzling. Mary and Joseph finally get their fussy, tired baby Jesus asleep after all those hours traveling and the giving birth. Suddenly a little boy comes over and “RAT-A-TAT-TAT!” Jesus jumps and wails! Joseph now wants to put the sticks and the drummer boy through that drum!

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4. “We Wish You A Merry Christmas”

A child’s favorite, this one gives me a headache.  It’s not the sentiment, but the way it’s sung, especially by kids:

We Wsssshhhh you a merry Christmas  [no ‘i’ in “wish”]
We Wsssshhhh you a merry Christmas  [still no ‘i’]
We WISSSSHHHH you a merry Christmas  [‘i’ added in, but that word is nearly yelled]
And a happy new year

Yep, the extreme over-emphasis of “wish” (along with dropping the ‘i’ in order to emphasize the -sh) is grating.  At least it is to me.

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5. “Jingle Bells”

A song about attempted murder and neglect.  How cheery.  Don’t believe me?  Check out the lyrics of the verse 2:

A day or two ago
I thought I’d take a ride
And soon, Miss Fanny Bright
Was seated by my side
The horse was lean and lank
Misfortune seemed his lot
He got into a drifted bank
And then we got upsot

Yep, the horse drove the two seeming lovers into a snow bank so they would die from hypothermia.  Why?  Probably because the small, weak horse was tired of being used as a tool by humans.  Vengeance: a wonderful holiday theme.

Don’t worry, it doesn’t get any better.  Check out verse 3:

A day or two ago
The story I must tell
I went out on the snow
And on my back I fell;
A gent was riding by
In a one-horse open sleigh
He laughed as there I sprawling lie
But quickly drove away

The poor soul fell and injured himself.  Suddenly, a passerby laughed at him and left him to suffer with a possibly paralyzing broken back.  Even worse, the injured man may have been stuck there where he could, again, die of hypothermia.

Yep, what a way to celebrate the holidays: injuries, dangerous animals, and heartless people.

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6. “Baby It’s Cold Outside”

Ah, the date rape song.

Okay, seriously, the song isn’t about that at all.  However, in today’s world you can’t turn on the news or go to social media without learning about another person (or ten) being accused of sexual assault.

So, despite the imagery that was innocent at the time, today this song doesn’t seem all that appropriate.

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7. “Frosty The Snowman”

Oversung. Over played.  And then there’s magic.  Yep, wizardry is used to bring an inanimate object to life.  I guess that top hat is a god or the tool of one?

Personally, though, I’m just tired of hearing about Frosty.

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8. “12 Days Of Christmas”

I actually like Relient K‘s version of this song due to it’s sarcasm and humor:

What’s a partridge?
What’s a pear tree?
Well, I don’t know so please don’t ask me
But I can bet those are terrible gifts to get

The traditional carol, however, is nauseatingly repetitive.  It gives “I’m Henry The Eighth I Am” and “This Is The Song That Doesn’t End” a run for their money (and at least the latter is cute and charming).

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9. “Blue Christmas”

One reason: I’m not an Elvis fan.  Doesn’t matter who covers it, this is an Elvis tune.  I don’t like Elvis, so I don’t like this song.

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10. “O Christmas Tree”

Worshiping a plant.  Really?  It’s a tree.  A plant.  Evergreen foliage.  True, it looks pretty all decked out in lights and ornaments.  But why do we need to sing it a song?  Are we going to date it?  I really thing someone had too much time on their hands, so they sat down and wrote a song to an oversized, pointy bush.

Of course, one could argue I have too much time on my hands, so I sat down and wrote this blog post.

Ah well, I still don’t like this song.

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11. “Mary Did You Know?”

To paraphrase Phineas, “Why yes. Yes she did.”

If you read the the Gospel of Luke, especially the Magnificat (Luke 1:46-55) you’ll realize that while she may not have realized every single detail mentioned in this song, she did comprehend that her baby was the savior, was God incarnate, and would save his people from sin and death.

Besides, this song is the Christmas version of “I Can Only Imagine“: it’s so overplayed and over-sung that it’s become annoying.

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12. “Santa Baby”

Ugh. Doo-wop meets that irritating Betty Boop-esque voice of Eartha Kitt.  Nevermind the idea of a young girl waiting up to… um… yeah.

Based on the lyrics, she’s clearly wanting Santa to bring her a lot of expensive worldly goods so she can be kissed by guys.  Yet, there’s clear innuendo that she’s wanting to be intimate with the old guy himself.  Ick!

Next song, please!

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Final Thoughts

Of course, if you made it this far, thanks for reading!

Although I don’t like these songs, quite a few were covered by Megadeth on Jimmy Kimmel Live in a skit called “Thrashing through the Snow.”  Personally, I’d love to see Mustaine and company release a Christmas album.  In the meantime I’ll just have to press “skip” on the music player when these songs start.

Are there any Christmas songs you don’t like?  Share and comment below.


John L. Rothra

John is an author, speaker, blogger, and aspiring YouTuber. He’s also a bassist and a huge Buffalo Bills fan. John holds a PhD in evangelism and has pastored/preached for over a decade.

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