I’m all about Christmas songs. They are cheery, joyful, sometimes in latin…it doesn’t get better than that. Sadly, I only really know the first lines of every single one because my only frame of reference are Christmas infomercials. In fact, I could probably do a medley of the first lines of Christmas songs (Have a holly, jolly Christmas. Jingle bells, Jingle Bells, jingle all the way) much like Hugh Laurie did on SNL this week.
Where are the good Hanukkah songs though? Maoz Tzur? That’s about killing heathens.
Jeffrey Goldberg at The Atlantic is writing about this very subject. Recalling a conversation he had with Orrin Hatch about their attempt to write a good Hanukkah song, he says that he has yet to find a good list.
I’m gonna try to help him out. I don’t have any current songs but I want to write a song called The Fat Guy with the Large Beard (an Ode to my Zayde for the Holidays). The lyrics will basically be a good recipe for Latkes, followed by an old man eating them.
With extra apple sauce of course.
Until it’s written though, just watch Rasheed Wallace and last year’s Detroit Pistons sing Jingle Bells. Hopefully, they’ll do this again. Watch the whole thing.
Pronounced: KHAH-nuh-kah, also ha-new-KAH, an eight-day festival commemorating the Maccabees’ victory over the Greeks and subsequent rededication of the temple. Falls in the Hebrew month of Kislev, which usually corresponds with December.