Episode 1: Who sang it best? Holiday Edition

Dec. 20, 2022, 3:13 p.m. | By Lillian Paterson | 1 year, 5 months ago

A ranking of the most iconic holiday song covers.

The original Santa Baby single cover (Courtesy of Vevo)

It’s the holiday season, and that means jingle bells, Christmas decorations, chilly weather, and perhaps the most exciting of all: music! Music is the centerpiece of a variety of holidays, from Halloween to Christmas. Especially for the winter holiday season, it’s become commonplace for musicians to release Christmas albums. So, since it’s that time of year again, let’s rank some of the most popular holiday songs covers as we countdown to Christmas!

In this first installment of “Who sang it best?” We are looking at one of the more controversial Christmas songs. Love it or hate it, Santa Baby is one of the most common songs to pop up on holiday radio. Let’s take a look at a handful of the most popular. 

  1. Earth Kitt (Original Version) - Santa baby is a hard song to cover without things getting very cringy very quickly. That’s why nothing can beat Earth Kitt’s original version. Released in 1953, the song quickly became iconic due to its playful take on holiday music. The jazzy “ba bums” at the start of the song, accompanied by Earth Kitt’s classy vocals come together to create a unique, all-around good holiday song. Nothing beats the original, at least in the case of this song. 
  2. Madonna - Coming up at number two is Madonna’s cover of Santa Baby! This cover was released as a part of Madonna’s A Very Special Christmas holiday album. It’s more fast-paced than the original, and just as jolly and spirited. The song is just like Christmas! Minus some points on this song though because of the lack of “ba bums” at the beginning of the song. While a small detail, it makes the song less recognizable as Santa Baby. Overall, this is a solid cover. 
  3. Taylor Swift - Country meets pop meets holiday season with this version of Santa Baby. Unfortunately, this cover falls flat. It doesn’t sound like a Christmas song – it sounds like a Taylor Swift song. Swift is an extremely talented musician, but this song does not live up to expectations. While it’s far from the worst cover on this list, it’s still painfully average and unexceptional. 
  4. Ariana Grande - This cover had a lot of potential. In theory, “Santa Baby'' is the perfect song for Ariana Grande to cover, it’s the perfect pop Christmas song. But for some reason, this cover just does not work. It sounds plastic and commercialized, denude of Christmas spirit. This isn’t to bag on pop Christmas – it works a lot of the time. Ariana Grande herself has come out with some great pop Christmas songs, like “Santa Tell Me,” for example. But for her “Santa Baby'' does not work. 
  5. Michael Buble - This is the worst. Michael Buble’s “Santa Baby” misses in every way possible. The “ba bums” at the beginning of the song are slow and painful to listen to. Everything falls apart when Buble mentions how he wants a Rolex for Christmas. This song is the antithesis of jolly. It is slow, boring and awful. Buble is known for his unique vocal tone, which fits well with a lot of Christmas songs. “Santa Baby” is not one of those songs.

Come back tomorrow for our next installment!

Last updated: Dec. 24, 2022, 9:14 a.m.

Tags: Christmas Holidays Ranking

Lillian Paterson. Hey, I'm Lillian (she/her) and I'm a co-sports and co-op-ed editor for SCO. When I'm not being totally consumed by school work I like to play guitar and read! More »

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