10 Sad Christmas Songs

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River (Joni Mitchell)
Blue Christmas (Elvis Presley)
Fairytale Of New York (The Pogues, Kirsty Maccoll)
Please Come Home For Christmas (Eagles)
If We Make It Through December (Merle Haggard)
Happy Xmas (War Is Over) (John Lennon)
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Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas (Judy Garland)
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The Christmas Shoes (Newsong)
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Merry Christmas Darling (Carpenters)
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Someday At Christmas (Stevie Wonder)
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It's so easy to forget with all the gaiety associated with the season that for some people Christmas is a very sad time. And so with that in mind we put together a list of sad Christmas songs to showcase the other side of Christmas. And nobody nails the hangdog look better than Elvis on 'Blue Christmas' as he pines for his loved one who won't make it back to his arms for the 25th. 'Fairytale of New York' from the Pogues wears several hats, a sad one, a tragic one and a comedy one but it makes it onto our sad Christmas songs list because of the lost potential as viewed from the bottom of a bottle.

Some of the songs on this list are even more overtly melancholy, like the Eagles version of the Charles Brown classic 'Please Come Home For Christmas'. Whereas the sparing partners on the Pogues song still had each other the subject matter on this Eagles song has lost both his true love and friends. Salvation it seems is not readily at hand. Things are a bit more hopeful for The Carpenters on 'Merry Christmas Darling' as the time apart looks for all the world as if it is purely temporary. But still the short term pain of going through the Christmas routine of Christmas card writing and hanging the decorations still makes for a very sad festive experience.

Not many people can convey sadness as well as Judy Garland and she did so to memorable effect when singing ‘Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas’ while armed with the knowledge that it would be the last Christmas she’d spend with her family in her hometown of St. Louis as they were all moving to New York soon afterwards. Taken from the 1944 movie ‘Meet Me In St. Louis’ Garland’s character sang 'Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas' to cheer up her distraught little sister who loved the city. Another one to make it onto our 10 sad Christmas songs list is Joni Mitchell’s 1971 ballad ‘River’ which despite never been released as a single has attained the status of Christmas standard. And the theme like many others on this list devotes itself to the loss of a Christmas spent without a loved one.

Published by SpiritOfXmas |
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