The Vietnam War brought out Americans’ outspoken freedom of speech, Americans’ ruthless passion for ideals, Americans’ noncompromising polarization, and Americans’ (eventual) potential for limitless brotherhood and devotion to one another as a people.
During the struggle, our songs reflected our nation’s soul, especially honorin’ The Holiday.
The Soul Searchers’ “Christmas in Vietnam” is soulful soul, poignant piety, and brotherhood. Yeah, that means sad.
Pvt. Charles Bowens & The Gentlemen from Tigerland also add soul to “Christmas in Vietnam.” It’s got a bit more motown drive to it, though.
Dumb ol’ country hick singing from Jack Cardwell makes “Christmas in Vietnam” ironically morose. Keep the Kleenex (and a thank-you note) nearby. The Sullivan Family add a high-stepping beat to their version of this tune.
Hey you–i’m talking to you: there’s a Gee Dee reason for this war even over Christmas. If you need an update, hearken to Rusty Wellington explaining dominos to you in “No Christmas Tree in Vietnam.” Country condescension.
Derrik Roberts adds sfx and girl backups to “There Won’t Be Any Snow (Christmas in the Jungle).” It’s spoken word jazz that falls flat (despite the ‘twist’ ending).
This is a fair sampling, but should you want to follow the expert trail, subscribe to The Vietnam War Song Project. It’s not just Christmas over there.
Let’s get back to music. Johnny and Jon harmonize so soulfully you’ll believe you’re outflanked during their “Christmas in Vietnam.” This is a gospelization of doo wop that may be leading us up that hard road to hip hop. (Viet Cong! Viet Cong!)