Annual Holidays with a Musical Twist

 

JANUARY 1: New Year's Day
Sing a song to celebrate. Take your pick. For example, U2 offers a simple, sweet song, aptly named "New Year's Day" at Metrolyrics.com: More> | Taylor Swift offers her "New Year's Day" lyrics at Genius.com: More> | Lyrics.com goes to the extreme with its list of songs that contain the words "New Year's Day," with its tally of 55,421 lyrics, 110 artists and 100 albums that use the term: More> 


     


FEBRUARY 4: Across the Universe Day
For Beatles fans and lovers of the Beatles song, "Across the Universe," the day is celebrated annually on February 4th. NASA actually started all the fun that was actually part of a serious science exploration when it beamed the Beatles "Across the Universe" song into deep space for the first time on Feb. 4, 2008. Ever since, Beatles fans and space exploration afficionados have celebrated the day every year since. Paul McCartney loved the idea and complemented the venture, saying, "Amazing. Well done, NASA. Send my love to the aliens." Visit NASA.gov for more details: More>

FEBRUARY 14: Valentine's Day
BuzzFeed offers 21 songs to share with your sweetheart, complete with a musical video for each. Included in the list is "Thirteen" by Big Star; "I Want to Hold Your Hand" by the Beatles; "Can't Help Falling in Love" by Elvis Presley; "I Would Do Anything for You" by Foster the People; "Lovesong" by Adele: More>

APRIL 1: April Fool's Day
To teach the kids about what the traditional April Fool's Day is all about, the song "I Played A Joke on You" is safe as can be: More>

For April Fool's Day with a sharp musical edge, "Top 10 Classic Rock 'Fool' Songs for April 1st" at VH1.com cuts it well with a back to the future twist: More>.

Something silly and from a different era might be a nice escape for a few minutes today. Popeye and Betty Boop, in this old cartoon with America's most memorable kid's song of its day, "I'm Popeye the Sailor Man," might hit your funny bone today: More>.

If musical cartoons with pranks aren't your thing, maybe a bevy of classic politically incorrect and corny comedians will make the day one long big laugh (but you'll have to hum to yourself while you watch, since little music can be found here). For those who prefer the politically incorrect, albeit tame, jokes of a bygone era, Rodney Dangerfield talks with Johnny Carson on The Tonight Show in 1983: More>. The one-of-a-kind Don Rickles throws the insults and laughs around with Johnny Carson in 1973: More>. The full crazy range of Robin Williams blooms with Johnny Carson in 1991: More>.

Going back to when black-and-white TV ruled, the wit of Grocho Marx makes for a funny, if not educational, fool's day experience on a "What's My Line" episode": More>.

Some say the greatest comedian of all time, W.C. Fields in The Diner Sketch makes his mark: More>.

The Honeymooners features, at the time, America's favorit fools, Ralph Kramden and Ralph, who brush up on the Hucklebuck dance: More>.

Saturday Night Vintage with Richard Pryor, Richard Thalmus Rasulala and Laraine Newman get the job done on any day, especially Fool's Day, in The Exorcist skit: More>

Last and least, what goes as humor for some with a different stroke in this world of upside down politics, maybe "25 of the Most Offensive Advertisements" at List25.com might make the shake-your-head April Fool's cut at the Republican White House pajama party this year, and perhaps inspire a few protest songs as a result: More>.

NOVEMBER, 4th Thursday: Thanksgiving Day
There must be a song that everyone sings around the dinner table. Not. But that's an opportunity for some songwriter to combine the love of food with the love of thankfulness with family and friends. In the meantime, here's a go at it by Timeout.com that offers its 20 best Thanksgiving songs, which include "Thank YouFriends" by Big Star; "I Want to Thank You" by Otis Redding; "Give Thanks and Praises" by Bob Marley and the Wailers; "Gratitude" by Earth, Wind and Fire; "Thank You for Sending Me an Angel" by Talking Heads: More> | Then again, it's hard to dispute the passion by Michele | And ThoughtCo.com agrees that most folks don't think of a particular song that's ideal for Thanksgiving, but they come up with a pretty good Top 10 list for turkey day, including "Thanksgiving Day" by Mary Chapin Carpenter; "Thanksgiving Day Song" by Adam Sandler of Saturday Night Live fame; "What a Wonderful World" by Louis Armstrong; "Thank You" by Dido: More> | Then again, it's hard to deny Michele Bates of the DailyHerald.com who offers her top 10 favorites for Thanksgiving has an excellent playlist for Thanksgiving, but absolutely nails it with her number one favorite, selecting "Food, Glorious Food" from Oliver, the musical: More>


DECEMBER 25: Christmas Day
If there is one carol that many of us sing and hum daily for weeks leading up to Christmas Day, it's got to be this short and sweet one: "We Wish You a Merry Christmas," and you know the rest because you're humming it right now. There are more verses and refrains than anyone realizes; they can be found at Lyricsmode.com: More>

There are so many great tunes and carols that bring out the kid in us all. DigitalDreamDoor.com put together an excellent and nicely organized 100 Greatest Christmas Songs; here's its complete list: More>

To give a listen, Digital's number one Christmas song is "White Christmas" by Bing Crosby (of course!). Number 2 is "The Chipmunk Song" by (who else?!) The Chipmunks. Bringing up a respectable third place was "Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer" by Gene Autry.

Number four is "I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus" by Jimmy Boyd. Number five is "Jingle Bell Rock" by Bobby Helms. Number six is "The Christmas Song" by Nat King Cole.

Many other Christmas greats include: "Little Drummer Boy" by Harry Simeone Chorale; "Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree" by Brenda Lee; "Santa Claus Is Coming to Town" by Bruce Springsteen.

Jingle Bells is one of the most recorded songs of all times; here's a notable list of artists to pick from at Wikipedia. However, no proper Christmas season could pass without "Jingle Bells" by The Singing Dogs.

And "Frosty the Snowman" by Gene Autry is unforgettable as well.

There are so many great holiday songs, such as "It's Beginning to Look A Lot Like Christmas" by Perry Como and The Fontaine Sisters; "Feliz Navidad" by Jose Feliciano; "Blue Christmas" by Elvis Presley and Martina McBride.

Then there is "Silent Night" by Barbra Streisand; "Silver Bells" by Johnny Mathis; "The Most Wonderful Time of the Year" by Andy Williams.

What would Christmas be without these favorites? "The Twelve Days of Christmas" by Ray Conniff Singers;  "Twas the Night Before Christmas" by Fred Waring and The Pennsylvanians; "Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow" by Dean Martin.

For those who haven't had enough, there's always "Sleigh Ride" by The Ventures, a funky instrumental for sure; "Snoopy's Christmas" by The Royal Guardsmen; "Donde Estes Santa Claus" by Augie Rios; "Baby's First Christmas" by Connie Francis.

For native Ashevilleans who moved away, Christmas wouldn't be complete without "Home for the Holidays" by Perry Como.

For those weary of war, there's no other more fitting song than "Happy Xmas (War Is Over)" by John Lennon and Yoko Ono.

For a foot-tapper, "Jingle Bell Rock" by Chubby Checker and Bobby Rydell.

For those missing the shore, "Little St. Nick" by The Beach Boys is the ticket.

There's no better reminder for the reason for Christmas than "Do You Hear What I Hear" by Bing Crosby.

For those who dream of a winning smile, here's the classic: "All I Want Is My Two Front Teeth" by Spike Jones & His City Slickers.

To help keep Asheville weird, there's the one and only "I Want A Hippopotamus for Christmas" by who knows who.

The heart of the season might best be summed up with "Give Love on Christmas Day" by The Jackson 5.

Hope springs eternal around the holiday season. Perhaps the reason Tiffany of Asheville and so many others say: "Christmas is absolutely my favorite holiday." So maybe they embrace the hope that by this time next year our troubles will be miles away, as predicted in "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" by Frank Sinatra.

Again, from one to 100, here's the complete DigitalDoorDream.com list of best Christmas songs with its selection of artists who they deemed to do the best rendition: More>

 

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