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Presenting: Global Comment’s Musical Advent Calendar

Welcome to Global Comment’s musical advent calendar! This year we thought we would treat you to an advent calendar with a difference – a classic Christmas song each day. When I was a child advent calendars had pictures inside – no chocolate in sight – and we actually used to get excited about finding out what the picture would be each day. Modern advent calendars seem to be just the same pieces of chocolate each day – without so much as a different shaped piece – and all the mystery and anticipation of what the day’s calendar might bring has been lost. To Cadbury’s.

But no more! Global Comment is here to brighten up your advent and bring back the magic of Christmas with some pop culture – it’s healthier than chocolate and much more fun.

Now, the history of Christmas pop music is long and illustrious (and has also had its share of not-so-memorable moments, which we shan’t dwell on). So each day until the 24th December we will feature a different Christmas song for your delight and debate – the song which should take the Christmas Eve position has already been hotly debated amongst the GC writers and staff, and I’m sure that there will be some choices (and omissions) from the calendar which might be controversial. Feel free to tell me in the comments if you feel a song should be included or even disqualified!

The featured Christmas songs have been chosen based on their most important qualities (entirely subjectively, and important to me, that is). Those qualities are:
Does singing along to the song at top volume in the car/at home make you feel happy?
Does the song provide the opportunity for using comedy singing voices? (I’m looking at you, The Pogues)
Does the song bring back fond Christmas memories?
Is the song suitable Christmas tree-decorating/mince pie-baking background music?
Is the song suitable for dancing to at the end of the office Christmas party?
Other criteria may be added and removed at will.

So to kick us off on the first of December, what better song could we find than Step Into Christmas by Elton John, from 1973? Unbelievably, it only reached number 24 in the UK charts, a fact I find astonishing to this day.
Everyone loves a bit of Elton John – even Vladimir Putin – and when you have the approval of a man who rides bears for fun, you know you’ve made it, no matter how successful you might otherwise be. So, let’s step into Global Comment’s Christmas advent calendar and see if we can keep you smiling through the coming days (see what I did there?!) – enjoy!

Photo by Jamie McCaffery, licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license