Here in Portland K103 FM switched to “All Christmas music” the day after Thanksgiving. I’ve been listening to it the last few days for [del]penance[/del]research to hear the wide variety of holiday tunes out there…and if I never here Jimmy Durante, Burl Ives or Gene Autry again it will be too soon. This station has played those three at least five times each since 7am this morning-ugh!
So what’s happening Christmas radio-wise in your neck of the North Pole?
From several articles I’ve read over the past few years, radio program directors who run all-Christmas formats regularly lament that they’ve discovered that there’s actually a fairly small list (only about 25 songs or so) that are widely popular, and if their playlists stray too far from that short list, they get complaints from listeners. So, many of them do they try to mix in some other songs, as well, but there’s apparently a limited appetite for that.
Who is this punk singing “Have a holleh Jolleh Christmas”?
Traditionally, we’ve had two stations here that had dueling Christmas music. This year one of them started at Thanksgiving, but the other didn’t (at least, not as of today.)
Thanks to my early career in radio, I’ve had enough Jolly Holly music to last the rest of my life, but I caught my wife listening to it today.
Right after Thanksgiving sounds at least somewhat sensible to me. 93.9 FM here in Chicago started Christmas music on Nov 7. Count your blessings. (And I actually do enjoy holiday-appropriate music. Coincidentally, I asked Alexa for Christmas music a few minutes before readings this thread.)
I love Christmas music, myself. I have The Roches Christmas CD, Pentatonics, “Weird” Al’s Peter And The Wolf and quite a few others.
At least they waited until after Thanksgiving. Here in New York, WLTW 106.7 starts right after Halloween. (I might be wrong about the exact date, but not by much - definitely before Thanksgiving.)
Ah, I mistook this thread for being a commentary on how soon they start Christmas music. I guess that’s just something I noticed lately, how Christmas keeps being pushed back earlier and earlier commercially to the point now where it’s Nov 7 in my market or just after Halloween in cmkeller’s.
In that case, the one question I have is what is the most modern song to have entered the category of “Christmas standard?” I’m thinking "All I Want For Christmas Is You, " by Mariah Carey in 1994. Then maybe “Last Christmas” by Wham! (1986) and “Wonderful Christmas Time” by Paul McCartney (1986). Any ones I’m missing between now and then?
Here’s a list from Billboard of the “Hot 100 Holiday Songs” from last year’s holiday season (I suspect that it’s informed by airplay). Other than the three songs you note, and newer cover versions of old songs (by Michael Buble and Pentatonix), the other relatively new / original songs in the top 40 are:
#16: Christmas Eve / Sarajevo 12/24 (Trans-Siberian Orchestra, 1995), though I’m not sure if this one counts, as it’s based on two traditional carols (God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen, and Carol of the Bells)
#24: Underneath the Tree (Kelly Clarkson, 2013)
#28: Santa Tell Me (Ariana Grande, 2014)
#34: Christmas Canon (Trans-Siberian Orchestra, 1998) – as with their other song on the list, it’s based on older music (Pachebel’s Canon in D Major)
#38: Please Come Home For Christmas (The Eagles, 1978) – a cover of a 1960 song
It’s probably too soon to tell if Kelly Clarkson’s or Ariana Grande’s songs will stick in the canon.
I usually stick to SiriusXM. Their Holly channel is pretty good, but still doesn’t have a lot of variety.
There is a local station that broadcast Christmas song, but we stopped after the year they didn’t play a single uptempo song the entire season.
I don’t know that I’d call it a ‘standard,’ but certainly “Text Me Merry Christmas” is modern.
I’m glad I’ve got Sirius/XM in the car so I can choose to listen to anything else. I only do Christmas jams on Christmas Day, and pick from my own collection. That’s enough.
The nearer to Christmas when they start, the better!
I almost never listen to commercial radio any more. Anytime I want to hear music, I go to You Tube or WNED Classical on cable or the Internet, depending on where I am. So I don’t really care if Christmas music (or anything else) is coming over the airwaves 24/7.
That said, I used to loathe constantly hearing Christmas music the last 10–15 years I lived in the US. A couple of years after I moved to Moscow in '92, and especially after my daughter was born, I realized I actually missed hearing it. Winter here is so dark and cold and dreary, there are very few bright spots from October through March. It can be unbelievably depressing.
New Year, which I don’t celebrate—I hate being reminded another year has passed—is the big holiday in Russia. I look forward only to the January 1 concert in Vienna, which is telecast here.
Russian Christmas—7 January, my birthday—is really not celebrated at all outside of the Orthodox Church. It isn’t festive at all.
Thank goodness USB decks are starting to show up on the junkyards now-a-days.
I like old radio stations. No Sirius for me. But I do hate all Christmas music playing. I don’t mind some, but crap it gets old. There’s really only one decent station anyway and they’ve started. Ugh.
I’d like Christmas radio more if they had some sacred hymns to go along with the pop music. Or if there was a station that played just the sacred hymns. How come I have to hear “All I Want For Christmas is You” 50 times, but can’t hear “What Child is This?” even once?
It came on 2 weeks prior to Thanksgiving.
Because their ratings triple.
our local station that used to be 100% Christmas songs starting on Thanksgiving is now playing Christmas songs mixed in with their normal top 40 stuff. They were Christmas only for around 10 years.
I listen to Spotify. Here’s an article from 2014 breaking down the nearly million songs they had at that point.