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The Most Depressing Christmas Songs Ever


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So it’s that time of year again. The bells they are a-jingling, the shops they are a-heaving, the days they are a-bloody freezing. Everywhere you tramp through the winter snow, you are followed by the ghosts of Christmas number ones past – as if they weren’t bad enough when they were released a hundred years ago. But hark! What’s that approaching on the horizon? It’s a rundown of the most depressing Christmas songs ever!

That’s right. As if the hole in your bank balance, the gift disappointment and the brain-freezing cold weren’t enough, listen carefully and you’ll see we are being bombarded constantly with songs about how depressing Christmas is. Because life isn’t like Love Actually, and for all that Christmas is supposed to be a magical time of year, sky-high expectations often just translate into feelings of loneliness and those end-of-year blues.

So which pop stars understand? 

Last Christmas I gave you my heart, but the very next day you gave it away…

So croons George Michael on Wham’s seminal hit ‘Last Christmases Because what crappy Christmas' are really good at is reminding you of better Christmases  past - perfect opportunity to compare your older, fatter, poorer and lonelier self with that carefree child of yesteryear.

Wish I could be dancing now, in the arms of the girl I love… Wish I was at home for Christmas.

This one goes out to all our boys fighting overseas. On ‘Stop the Cavalry’, Jonah Lewie kindly reminds us that even though it’s Christmas, goodwill to all men is the exception rather than the rule. War isn’t over.

Happy Xmas (War Is Over)

This song is depressing for its sheer irony, courtesy of those optimistic hippies. The title alone is depressing enough.

a) It isn’t cool or hip or anything but lazy to misspell ‘Christmas’ as ‘Xmas’. C’mon John.
b) See above. War goes on. People are getting killed, unfairly, every day. Even at Christmas time.

Do they know it’s Christmas time at all?

More than 25-years after Band Aid released this, global hunger is still a real crisis. Western countries continue to waste money on goods they don’t need, and Christmas has become the definition of this kind of wastefulness.

You’ll be doing alright with your Christmas of white, and I’ll have a blue, blue, blue, blue Christmas.

All that pressure to be with someone at Christmas just heightens the loneliness you actually face. In true Christmas spirit, this song is anxious to remind you that when you’re crying into your Crunchy Nut over some sappy rom-com, he/she is probably having a much better time without you.

Frosty the Snowman

Not strictly depressing, but the Jackson 5 rendering of this insipid ‘pop’ song makes me want to stab somebody.

And finally…

Fairytale Of New York 

Possibly the best Christmas song ever, The Pogues and Kirsty MacColl here remind us of Christmas’ unrivalled ability to cause domestic and familial rifts, all against a backdrop of nasty weather and crushed dreams.

Bah, humbug. Merry Christmas everybody!

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