I am partially annoyed and partially amused by this. Mainly annoyed, because B101 is THAT station that normally begins playing Christmas Music on November 1. Yes. The day AFTER Halloween. And the music isn't interspersed among it's usual playlist of soft rock. No. It's ALL Christmas Music, ALL the time. 24 hours a day. For upwards of 2 months.
Now, I love Christmas music. Possibly more than the next person. I love the atmosphere it creates, the memories it raises, and the emotion it fills me with. But even I struggle with hearing Christmas Music that far in advance of Christmas. Mainly because it takes the "special" out of the holiday, and it anesthetizes the hearts of even the most merry of Christmas lovers. We become numb, the music becomes too familiar and overplayed, and it all but ruins Christmas.
I did appreciate, though, 2 things that the poll tallied: 1) Listeners could vote on WHEN B101 would begin playing Christmas Music (varying from NOW to December 1). I tried to strike a reasonable balance: Thanksgiving Day.
And 2) listeners have the chance to rate a selection of songs, essentially deciding WHAT songs will be played over the Season.
I love having the chance to control what Christmas music will be playing during the Holiday Season. Mainly because there are a LOT of CRAPPY holiday songs out there. During the 10 minutes I spent listening to the large assortment of songs (so large, it could only have been EVERY Christmas song known to man), I realized several things. Here they are in no particular order:
1) "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen/We Three Kings" performed by Barenaked Ladies and Sarah Maclachlan has got to be one of my favorite Christmas arrangements EVER.
2) If the artist was classic (Nat King Cole, Gene Autry, Burl Ives, Frank Sinatra, Vince Guaraldi, Dean Martin, Bing Crosby, The Chipmunks), I rated it high. I like Classic Christmas songs sung by Classic people. Or talking rodents.
3) Not all artists needed to make a Christmas album. Here I am thinking Jessica Simpson, Mariah Carey, Bruce Springsteen, The Beach Boys, Diana Ross, Jackson 5, Madonna, WHAM!, etc. Seriously? WHAM?
4) Some artists make surprisingly good Christmas music. James Taylor is one of those people.
5) "Christmas Shoes" will make me cry every time I hear it. No matter how many times I've already heard it. Don't judge me.
6) Instrumental Christmas Music that rocks: Trans-Siberian Orchestra, Jim Brickman, Vince Guaraldi, etc.
7) Instrumental Christmas Music that sucks: Manheim Steamroller, Kenny G, Manheim Steamroller, Manheim Steamroller.
8) Manheim Steamroller makes my blood pressure shoot through the roof. They should be destroyed.
9) Some songs need to be never played again on the radio: "Wonderful Christmastime" (Paul McCartney) and "Last Christmas" (WHAM!). Ever.
10) Christmas Duet that rocks: Bing Crosby and David Bowie
11) Christmas Duet that makes you wonder, "What the what?!?": Frank Sinatra and Cyndi Lauper.
12) Who the HECK are The Oak Ridge Boys? And why is their music considered Holiday Music?
13) I am only slightly miffed that "Dominick the Donkey" was not among the selection. Whatever.
14) Johnny Mathis was far too into Christmas.
15) The song "Silver Bells," performed by anyone, should be destroyed.
16) "Christmas Song" by DMB is an often sadly overlooked holiday song. Because it rocks. So consider it.
It's amazing how much Christmas Music gives you to think about.
What about you? When do YOU like hearing holiday music on the radio? Favorite Holiday song? Biggest Holiday song hangup??
Would love your input, so leave a comment!