Written by cycleguy on December 1st, 2015

One of my favorite Christmas is “White Christmas.” I know…not very spiritual. And also in some places not very welcome (I’m thinking Arizona, Florida, Georgia, and other warm-blooded states). Ironically, for others, if it doesn’t snow then it really isn’t Christmas.

Anyway, I love “White Christmas” and as far as I’m concerned the master of that song is Bing Crosby. Hundreds of others have sung it but NONE hold a candle, IMHO, to Bing’s version. In the remake of Holiday Inn titled White Christmas, they wisely chose Bing to sing the closing song and not Danny Kaye. That Bing could sing! That song was Bing’s 79th charting single; became the most successful of his early years; and forever tied him to the holidays.

Irving Berlin was born Israel Baline in Russia, but spent his youth in NYC. While working as a waiter he wrote “Alexander’s Ragtime Band” and he suddenly found himself in the spotlight. In 1941 he was asked to write the score for a movie, Holiday Inn, and he drew on what he knew. As a New Yorker, he pictured snow and Santa, but was more aware of the nostalgia many experience. With that in mind, he wrote what was to become the pivotal song for Holiday Inn-and would make the movie a classic.

Crosby sang it just 3 weeks after Pearl Harbor on his December 25, 1941 radio show. The rest is, as they say, history. Over the course of the next 20 years, it landed on the charts 15 more times. Berlin won an Academy Award for Best Song in 1942 and it hit number one in 1945 and 1946.

Bing died in 1977. Just before he died he recorded White Christmas one more time for a TV special. The voice is now silent and yet still sings on. Just like Jesus. Born. Died. Rose. Ascended. Gone for close to 2000 years. His message of love and redemption still sings on.

The historical information has been taken from this book by Ace Collins.

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11 Comments so far ↓

  1. Daniel says:

    That song was one of those on the Christmas records that my parents would play when I was a kid. Man those tunes helped to add to my excitement of what was to come.

  2. One of my favorite tunes, too, Bill. And I agree – no one can hold a candle to Bing!

  3. Lisa notes says:

    Rarely do we get a white Christmas in Alabama, but we always hope for one anyway. 🙂 I didn’t realize Crosby sung White Christmas 3 weeks after Pearl Harbor. Gives it even more meaning.

  4. floyd says:

    Yeah, I’m not big on polished crooner style of vocals, but that one is a classic and it’s not like Christmas till I hear it.

    But what do I know? It’s not Christmas until I hear The Eagles, “Bells Will Be Ringing”, Bob Seger’s, “The Little Drummer Boy,” and Bruce Springsteen’s, “Santa Clause Is Coming To Town” either!

    • cycleguy says:

      I agree with you on the crooner style, but guess we part with the others. Have not heard the first two by either and don’t like Bruce. 🙂

  5. I like Holiday Inn better than White Christmas.

  6. Ed says:

    Usually a white day means a lot of mud afterwards. But it’s a great day to stay inside by the fire,
    providing the fire is in the chimney…Of course