My Advent Calendar of Music – Day #22: An Old-Fashioned Christmas

Whoever made the decision to team up Bing Crosby and the Andrews Sisters deserves a medal for raising the spirits of families in this country at a time when there was lots of uncertainty about what the future held in store.

Between 1939 and 1952, they recorded 47 songs together – including 6 Christmas songs – almost half of which (23) made it onto the Billboard charts (the most successful pairing of musical acts in recording history).  Many of these songs are still very popular today, even among younger listeners.

I’ve always loved the “scratchy” tone on these recordings; it gives them a unique sound and places them at a particular time in history. Whenever I hear these “old” recordings, I think of families sitting around together in their living rooms, listening to the “newest” tunes by the contemporary artists of their day. This post is for all of them.

In 1943, Bing, Patty, LaVerne, and Maxene teamed up to sing “Jingle Bells”:
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Of course, the Andrews Sisters had already achieved fame as a stand-alone group before their songs with Mr. Crosby; in 1946 – just a year after the troops came home from World War II – they invited a war-weary populace to spend Christmas in a cozy little getaway on “Christmas Island”:
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In 1947, Mr. Crosby and the Andrews Sisters got together again to record “Santa Claus is Coming to Town”:
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In 1949, they did a cover of Gene Autry’s original composition, “Here Comes Santa Claus” – which was quite popular in its own right:
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A year later (1950), Bing Crosby and the Andrews Sisters teamed up yet again to record a decidedly “tropical” Christmas song, “Mele Kalikimaka” – back when Hawaii was just another “exotic” destination/military base (it wouldn’t become a state for another 9 years):
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Now, it wouldn’t be a “Bing Crosby” post without this one (and I didn’t dare leave this version out of the Christmas music line-up!).

In 1947, Mr. Crosby recorded this version of what would become a beloved Christmas classic – “White Christmas”. Over 60 years later, it still ranks #1 on the list of all-time favorite Christmas songs:
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That’s it for today – I hope you have enjoyed this trip down Memory Lane as much as I have –
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About Teresa in Fort Worth, TX

A short, fat, middle-aged, happily-married, mother of 4 daughters. A former high school valedictorian (way back in the Stone Age), a Civil Engineering major in college, a middle-of-the-road Conservative, and a moderate Methodist. I know just enough to get myself in trouble....
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