Three songs to get you out of the small talk slump this Christmas

With less than two weeks left of Advent, Christmas party season is in full swing – and the potential for awkward conversations with people you have nothing in common with is correspondingly high. But if words fail you, there’s one language that everyone understands: music.

Advent is here, and the airwaves are full of Christmas music. While some of us can’t get enough of the sleigh bells jingling, others would happily force Mariah Carey to take a vow of silence by the second repeat of “All I Want For Christmas Is You”. The only thing better than five octaves, in their opinion? None at all.

But whether you’re a lover or a hater of Christmas music, it’s worth reading on for some fascinating facts about Advent’s most iconic songs. Not only will they come in handy for breaking any awkward silences at your office Christmas party, they’re also perfect for distracting attention from your embarrassing uncle at the dinner table.

Feliz Navidad

Merry Christmas! Now say it like you mean it: 39 times.

José Feliciano’s “Feliz Navidad” comes in at number 15 on the list of the US’s best-loved Christmas songs. He claims that he wrote it in five minutes – a fact we can easily believe, given that the lyrics consist of just 19 words in two languages: Feliz Navidad, próspero año y felicidad / I wanna wish you a Merry Christmas, from the bottom of my heart. And just to make sure that nobody misses his good wishes, Feliciano then repeats the Spanish line 21 times and the English one 16 times. Hopefully everyone’s convinced by that point.

Last Christmas

Where did George Michael give his heart away? In Switzerland!

A few days ago, Wham! member Andrew Ridgeley admitted that he can understand why the band’s 1984 hit “Last Christmas” gets on people’s nerves. A nice sentiment, but it doesn’t offer much comfort to the thousands of radio listeners scrambling for the off switch every time the song comes on. As if the falsetto wasn’t bad enough, “Last Christmas” lasts an ear-splitting four minutes and 27 seconds. The video, which at least offers some light relief in the form of beautiful alpine landscapes, was filmed in a chalet at the Swiss ski resort of Saas-Fee.

White Christmas

Who names their kid Bing?

Climate change has probably made white Christmases a thing of the past, but “White Christmas” is still going strong. Bing Crosby’s 1947 version of the song is the top-selling single of all time, having sold 50 million copies. And no, his parents didn’t presciently name him for the sound of a Christmas bell – he started out as plain(ish) Harry Lillis Crosby.

Made a splash with our music facts, but still have hours to go till the party winds down? Try keeping people entertained with details of how Santa answers thousands of letters each year… or the many ways those letters can go wrong. Feliz Navidad and a happy new year!

Cover image via Giphy

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