The Quinto Sisters, First to Sing “Holly Jolly Christmas” – Even Before Burl Ives

Johnny Marks, one of the greatest writers of Christmas songs in the twentieth century, already had several holiday hits under his belt by the time he was approached to write the music for the 1964 Rankin/Bass television special, “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer“. Since he was responsible for the 1949 song …

Frosty the Snowman, by Walter E. “Jack” Rollins and Steve Edward Nelson (1950)

Ask any child and he’ll tell you:  the secular Christmas trinity is Santa Claus, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, and Frosty the Snowman.  And why not?  Without Santa Claus, there would be no Rudolph, and without Rudolph, there would never have been a Frosty.  They now exist as an inseparable trio …

“Baby it’s Cold Outside” by Frank Loesser (1944)

Illustration by Justin Newhouse One in a series of essays exploring the history of a favorite Christmas song. Although it made its public debut in the 1948 film “Neptune’s Daughter”, the song “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” had actually been written four years earlier.  Susan Loesser, in her 1993 memoir, “A …

One Horse Open Sleigh

“The One Horse Open Sleigh”, published in 1857, dedicated to John P. Ordway, Esq. Renamed “Jingle Bells” and published in 1859 Lyrics and music by James Lord Pierpont (1822-1893) [ult_dropcap type=”round” color=”#ffffff” bcolor=”#94c263″ ]T[/ult_dropcap]hat definitive Christmas song, “Jingle Bells”, which we’ve all known since we were old enough to attempt …