The ‘Jingle Bells’ juggernaut has bestowed upon us an industry of songs that aren’t the standard. And you can’t have an engaging story without some conflict. So let’s look at the broken bells a bit. Cry amongst yourselves.
“Ding-a-Ling the Christmas Bell” fell and broke his harmony, according to Lynn Anderson. 1971 was full of such ugly duckling lessons: don’t judge his horrid noise! He saves Santa!!
“The Bell that Couldn’t Jingle” was a 1962 number from Paul Evans, penned by Burt Bacharach. This time the handicapped kid gets a magic fix. And probably got an office job with people who invited him to their backyard bar-be-cues. Bobby Vinton tried this in 1964 with more talent (the same year The Baby Dolls swaddled it in bubble gum), Bobby Helms takes it down to country moroseness in ’65, then the Burt Bacharach Singers make a mess of it in 1968 (the same year Herb Alpert’s players enfolds it into cartoon fun)… hoo-boy let’s leave it at that.
Okay, okay ONE more. (It’s who i am.) The diva-like devotion to the over-orchestrated overly serious Catherine McKinnon version out-camps them all. Are you serious?! Just listen: