Everyone loves a good Christmas song (well, most people). Many rock and pop artists have released festive-themed tunes over the years, and the four members of The Beatles were no exception. As a group, they recorded a song called ‘Christmas Time (Is Here Again)’ which appeared on their Christmas fan club record in 1967. But each of them also released Christmas songs as solo artists. Here’s a look at them.
John and Yoko released ‘Happy Xmas (War Is Over)’ in 1971. Recorded with the Harlem Community Choir, the song is an anti-war protest, promoting a message of peace and unity. It reached number four in the UK singles chart on its original release and has also charted numerous times in the years since John’s death, becoming a Christmas favourite and being covered by many artists.
Paul has also had huge success in the Christmas singles market. He released ‘Wonderful Christmastime’ in 1979, which was later included on the reissue of Wings’ Back to the Egg album. It reached number six in the chart and has become one of the most played Christmas pop songs of all time. It too has been covered by various people over the years.
George also got in on the act, releasing the single ‘Ding Dong, Ding Dong’ just in time for Christmas 1974. It was included on his album Dark Horse, and though it doesn’t directly reference Christmas, it does contain the sound of bells and has a New Year theme, with its lyric: “Ring out the old, ring in the new.” It was not a big hit in the UK or US charts, but did quite well in several other countries.
Rather than simply release a Christmas song, Ringo went one better and recorded an entire Christmas album. I Wanna Be Santa Claus was released in 1999 and consisted of a mix of originals and cover versions, which included the single ‘Come On Christmas, Christmas Come On’. He even recorded his own version of The Beatles’ 1967 fan club tune ‘Christmas Time (Is Here Again), which featured a guitar solo from Aerosmith’s Joe Perry.