The 10 Most Annoying and Ubiquitous Holiday Songs

2. "The 12 Pains of Christmas" by Bob Rivers (1990)



"The 12 Days of Christmas," the original, has its annoying aspects, including trite repetition and nonsensical lyrics. But it's more than 200 hundred years old, and we respect anything with that kind of longevity. Such respect should not be extended to "The 12 Pains of Christmas," a song parody written by Bob Rivers. Like you, we normally adore song parodies, as they're the height of creativity and a forum for rapier-like wit. Actually that's not true; they're the complete opposite, as evidenced by Rivers' opus, which includes these lyrics: "The seventh thing at Christmas that's such a pain to me: The Salvation Army/Facing my in-laws/Five months of bills!/Sending Christmas cards/Oh, geez!/I'm tryin' to rig up these lights!/And finding a Christmas tree."

1. "Wonderful Christmastime" by Paul McCartney (1979)



Paul McCartney is one of the greatest songwriters of all time, but someone should have hidden the synthesizer when he started working on this concoction. From the abstract, lazy lyrics—"The mood is right/the spirit's up" (which might have a place in a Viagra ad campaign)—to the cloying refrain of "Simply having a wonderful Christmastime," this synthesizer-infected song is worse than anything Ringo Starr ever did. And that's accounting for the film Caveman.

Jump to comments
Presented by

Cameron Martin is a freelance writer and contributor to the New York Times, the Daily Beast, Yahoo! Sports, and Barnes & Noble Review.

Get Today's Top Stories in Your Inbox (preview)

Is Technology Making Us Better Storytellers?

How have stories changed in the age of social media? The minds behind House of Cards, This American Life, and The Moth discuss.


Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register. blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Is Technology Making Us Better Storytellers?

The minds behind House of Cards and The Moth weigh in.

Video

A Short Film That Skewers Hollywood

A studio executive concocts an animated blockbuster. Who cares about the story?

Video

In Online Dating, Everyone's a Little Bit Racist

The co-founder of OKCupid shares findings from his analysis of millions of users' data.

Video

What Is a Sandwich?

We're overthinking sandwiches, so you don't have to.

Video

Let's Talk About Not Smoking

Why does smoking maintain its allure? James Hamblin seeks the wisdom of a cool person.

Writers

Up
Down

More in Entertainment

Just In