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21# Jingle Bell Rock: Bobby Helms’ Rockin’ Christmas classic

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Here’s the surprising history behind your favorite Christmas Carols!
What if “The Red-Nosed Reindeer”, Frosty and the “One Horse Open Sleigh” had nothing to do with Christmas?
Singing Christmas songs goes hand in hand with baking Christmas treats, listening our favorite Christmas tales, watching our favorite Christmas movies, and not only.
Like everything around this period of the year, everything has a story.
From songs that have been saved from being erased forever to not really knowing for sure where a song came from, here is the history of a few Christmas Carols you know and sing still today!

Enjoy our Advent Calendar 2022!

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🎄🎅🏻 THERE ARE ONLY 4 DAYS UNTIL CHRISTMAS 🎅🏻🎄

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With ‘Jingle Bell Rock,’ Bobby Helms made one of the all-time great Christmas songs – one that was still entering the charts 60 years after it was recorded!

It is considered the first mainstream rock ‘n’ roll Christmas song, and Bobby Helms was a new, relatively successful Country artist with two country hits in 1957, “Fraulein” and “My Special Angel,” both that made it into the pop Top 40.
Although this was released only two days before Christmas in 1957, the single hit #6 on the pop chart.
The song was re-released around Christmas in 1958 and again in 1960, making it back to the charts each time.
The B-side of the single is “Captain Santa Claus And His Reindeer Space Patrol.”
When country music singer Bobby Helms, the Indiana-born singer who had become a regular guest on TV, appearing on both American Bandstand and The Ed Sullivan Show, was first offered the chance to sing a new festive song called “Jingle Bell Rock,” he was initially skeptical about the idea of mixing rock’n’roll and Christmas.
But he was quickly won over, and his single, issued by Decca Records, soon became a holiday classic. “‘Jingle Bell Rock’ has made itself a part of Christmas,” he said. “It lifts people up.”
And today, you can find it on playlists alongside staples like “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer“, Nat King Cole’s “The Christmas Song“, White Christmas” and more.
The rock beat of the song – Hank Garland’s electric guitar is heard playing the first notes of the chorus – along with the steady beat of jingle bells and sweet back-up singing from The Anita Kerr Quartet all added to the appeal of a song that contained joyful lyrics such as “Giddy-up jingle horse, pick up your feet.”
And, if you are wondering what a jingle horse is, the answer is…a decorated reindeer!

Many artists have covered this song, including Hall & Oates, The Platters, 38 Special, and The Beach Boys. However, the only other version to chart was by Chubby Checker and Bobby Rydell.
More recently, the song has been covered by artists like Ariana Grande, Brenda Lee, and Mariah Carey. (Mariah’s version can be heard on her Christmas album that features “All I Want For Christmas is you.”)
But original version is the go-to song for soundtracks and, over the years, it has been used in several TV shows, including The Wonder Years, Chuck, House M.D., It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, The Simpsons, South Park, Family Guy and Once Upon A Time.
It’s also featured in the movies Lethal Weapon (1987), Home Alone 2: Lost In New York, Jingle All The Way (1996), and Vanilla Sky (2001).

Either way, Bobby Helms continued touring and recording for the rest of his life without matching his early hits. He also got into the nightclub business and took on sponsoring country music festivals.
He died from emphysema and asthma at the age of 63, in June 1997, but his Jingle Bell Rock will live on as long as Christmas is celebrated.

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🎄🎅🏻 THERE ARE ONLY 4 DAYS UNTIL CHRISTMAS 🎅🏻🎄

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MORE STORIES
🎄 ADVENT CALENDAR 2018
🎄 ADVENT CALENDAR 2019
🎄 ADVENT CALENDAR 2020
🎄 ADVENT CALENDAR 2021

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