Christmas oldies – For today’s seniors not much has changed on the carols’ music scene
When looking for inspiration on what to write my Boxing Day blog post about, I felt something related to the season would be adequate, thus a google search on ‘oldies + Christmas’ was a given.
I don’t know what I had expected to find, but the obvious ten top hits were all related to favourite Christmas oldies, as in ‘old Christmas songs’. And then it struck me. Have you ever thought about that so many of the Christmas songs and carols that we still consider our favourites were all recorded in the the 40s, 50s and 60s? Around the time when the people that are getting ready for retirement nowadays were born and young? I hadn’t. So I dug a little deeper and guess what I found?
Out of the 25 most popular Holiday songs in the US in the past decade (as in most played both on radio and i-Pods) all but two were songs initially recorded during the 30s, 40s, 50s and 60s. If you look at the top 10 songs for this holiday season all of them are from the same decades.
The single with most sold copies worldwide all time (regardless of genre) is White Christmas by Irving Berlin with Bing Crosby from 1942 and according to a Wikipedia compilation of the top ten songs with most copies sold worldwide three of them are Christmas carols, recorded during the 30s and 40s (#3 Bing Crosby – Silent Night, 1935 (even if this particular song is based on an Austrian song from 1818), #1 Bing Crosby – White Christmas from 1942 and #8 Gene Autry – Rudolph The Red-nosed Reindeer from 1949).
When cross-checking and putting together the numbers I was quite fascinated, even if the metrics of ‘copies sold’ in particular might not be the most fair to songs released in our later digitalized music era.
I also found an intent of giving an explanation as to why it’s so hard to come up with another ‘Rudolph’ Christmas hit and that was given by a Canadian newspaper in 1979. The article explained that back in the day when Rudolph The Red-nosed Reindeer was released, such a hit would be released already in September and therefore have a longer period of time to reach popularity, whereas in 1979 (and still today) most malls and radio stations won’t start playing Christmas songs until late November (after Thanksgiving), making Christmas hits a less lucrative business having only a couple of weeks to create the same billboard sensations.
Whichever the reason, one thing is certain: for the seniors joining the 65+ silverevolution in the coming years, much will have changed since they were young, but when it comes to the favourite songs played each year around Christmas, the are likely to keep reminding them of their childhood for many years to come.
With that said I’d like to take the opportunity to wish all of you a belated Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays with one of my own favourite Christmas songs (that got to #3 on the music charts back in its day in 1946):