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Surfing to Christmas

December 13, 2013 - John Mehno
One of the big radio trends of the last decade is wall-to-wall Christmas music, usually starting before Thanksgiving.

In just about every market, a few stations overload on jingle bells for fun and profit. Some people love it, others find it intolerable. But it works, and that's why they keep doing it.

With a need to fill all those hours around the clock, there's little regard for what's actually being played. In a simpler time, stations would weave Christmas songs into the regular music rotation. They'd start with the novelty stuff, then get more serious as it got closer to the actual holiday. That sense of proportion is gone now. So you get "O Holy Night" on Nov. 18, and you get the Chipmunks on Dec. 24. Worse, you get Karen Carpenter singing, "Greeting cards have all been sent/The Christmas rush is through" before the Thanksgiving turkey has been basted.

This selection (link on the right) is something that would have been played in the early days of the Christmas season. You wouldn't think surf guitar and Christmas would be a good match, but this works. (And, yes, I know it's technically a winter song rather than a Christmas one).

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