Christmas Song nr. 25: Fairytale of New York by The Pogues & Kristi McColl

It’s probably not odd that one of the most famous Christmas songs land here on the list and again not so surprising that it ends up on the day itself. To many around the world Sean MacGowan’s anthem is the very best holiday tune, although fairly unknown in the states it is iconic in Europe.

Fairytale of New York  was released in 1987 by The Pogues, written by Shane MacGowan and Jem Finer, though it had been in the works since 1985. It basically is the amalgamation of all the songs on this list. In it you will find the spirit of the season, the loneliness some can feel and the longing or desire that comes with the holidays. About a man in a New York City drunk tank he hears the man in the next cell sing an old tune and then dreams about the female character in that very song. It ends up becoming an imagined conversation between the two about youthful hopes and a life lost to drug and alcoholism. At its core it is a very sad song, but still one that incorporates the season. Its folk music style gives it that old seasonal feel as well.

Because of this somberness and that it in the end just represents all the Christmas tunes on this list; Fairytale of New York is the final and 25th pick on The Christmas List of Songs.

-Andrew Tobias


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