Halloween is over, and the age-old tradition of skipping right over Thanksgiving in anticipation of Christmas is in full effect. Radio stations are starting to crank out Christmas tunes, and every department store you enter will soon have the very same songs blaring over the loudspeakers.
Even die-hard Christmas junkies have to admit that some of these songs get really old, really fast, where others have a staying power that defies expectations.
Here is a definitive ranking of the Christmas music you will soon be hearing over, and over, and over again in these next few months.
"The Chipmunk Song" - Alvin & The Chipmunks
Where to start? First off, a song played several octaves higher than all its competition is already bound to be a headache, and to have that multiplied into a squeaky trio is more than the average listener should be expected to handle.
Maybe it's cute the first time you hear it. But all the times after that, you find yourself being grateful that chipmunks can't really sing.
"Baby It's Cold Outside" - Dean Martin
OK, maybe this one gets a bad rep — the creepy lyrics apparently had a respectable place in the culture of the 1950s, and it's easy to read too deeply into what they mean.
That said, coercion in any form doesn't really scream "Christmas" to me. Combine the subject matter with the headache-inducing, monotonous duet, and you have a perfect recipe for a song you never want to hear again.
"All I Want For Christmas Is You" - Mariah Carey
I'm sure that 25 years ago when this song was released, it was a total banger. The first couple of times you hear it, it's really good.
But when you hear it again, and again, and again, as you're sure to do, it starts to grind on your ears in a way many Christmas songs don't. This song has a lot of things going for it, but staying power isn't one of them.
"Sleigh Ride" - The Ronettes
The catchy, fast lyrics make up for this song's constant ring-a-linging at the end of every line. The first time you hear it, it's fun and upbeat, and there's no better song to blast when you're on a cute Christmas date, but it earns a spot in 7th place because of how fast it gets old if you aren't in the cheerful Christmas spirit.
"Jingle Bell Rock" - Bobby Helms
This song is by no means bad, and when you listen to it at the right time, it's actually pretty good. The repetitiveness of the lyrics combined with the monotony of Helms's voice, though, makes it a little tough to really get into.
It begs its listeners to be in a festive mood, but it doesn't necessarily inspire you to do so.
"Santa Baby" - Madonna
What can't this woman do? "Santa Baby" is just flirtatious enough to make it stand out from the others, and the varied lyrics keep it from ever getting too boring.
The repetition of the initial phrase makes it a little tedious if you listen to it too much, but overall it's worth a few listens over the course of the holiday season. Covers of this song always manage to sound good, too.
"Wonderful Christmastime" - Paul McCartney
This song is so laidback that it doesn't really matter when or where you hear it. The voice and the music are smooth and simple, it's easy to sing along to, and it makes you want to just sit back and appreciate the little things about Christmas.
"Feliz Navidad" - Jose Feliciano
The upbeat nature and overall cheerfulness brings this song to third place. It's repetitive, but the fact that it's in Spanish makes it fun to sing over and over again, especially for non-speakers.
The beat of the music makes you want to dance, and, as Christmas music goes, it's overall a pretty solid choice.
"You're A Mean One, Mr. Grinch" - Thurl Ravenscroft
This song gets one of the top spots because it's the only top Christmas song that functions solely as a roast sesh. Termites in your smile? Cuddly as a cactus? Garlic in your soul?
Ravenscroft really came for the Grinch with this one, and nothing will ever top the arsenal of creative insults he just casually hurls his way.
"Carol of the Bells" - Trans-Siberian Orchestra
This song is the best Christmas song, bar none. The chorus never gets old, and singing along to the instrumental on full volume is an unparalleled experience. This song was great when it came out, it's great now, and it'll be great in a hundred years.
The holiday season is upon us. What songs are you going to be jamming to?