Let’s not leaf off the religion. We sing about trees because we need to get us closer to God.
Bing Crosby leads the congregation with “O Fir Tree Dark.” It’s a symphonic sermon to put us on the straight and sylvan. Not so much about Christmas, though. Double your Bing, double your troubadoring: “Is Christmas Only a Tree?” searches through the trees for more Xmas meaning. (I’m gonna say Mr. Crosby’s a hater of trees.)
“There’s a Christmas Tree in Heaven” may have been a minor hit for The Four Aces, mixing prayer with doowop. It may have originated with Eddy Howard and His Orchestra–they wah-wah out a nice little mixed beat to their big band rhythms. But they both came out the same year. Johnny Collins & The Caravans countrify the rock (with mocking horn–!?) to appeal to the youngset, but this time it’s a real country howler about Mommy and Daddy up there.
When Jane Irene Farley asks us “Let’s Dance Around the Christmas Tree” she is, in a stentorian (and off key) fashion, instructing us in all the Biblical connections. It’s a spelling lesson full of pop timpani, and whiff of Island sauciness.
Shortly and sweetly Al Jarreau sings a rond “By My Christmas Tree” which puts me a spiritual way, more than reminds me directly about only God can make a tree.
Marvelous Marvah asks for a whole Nativity scene and a “Golden Christmas Tree” to help with this holiest of nights. Parang time!
Rollicking disco electric blues from Inquisitor Betrayer claims that “The Christmas Tree Blues” are about the confusion between the secular spruce and the reason for the ball-hanging.