I'm a big fan of the Very Special Christmas franchise - have been since I shoplifted the first volume on cassette in 1987. What I think I love most about the songs gathered over its first three volumes (I lost interest after 1997) is how so many artists whose work I wasn't really into rose to the occasion to deliver original songs or reinventions of standards that felt - still feel - were/are Christmas to me. I designate this song by Billy Idol, which for all I know is an original, an honorary Very Special Christmas Song. Alas, I found it tacked on the end of a compilation titled Monster Ballads Xmas, with fourteen predictably glammed-up versions of predictably-selected popular favorites by Warrant, Dokken, Winger, et al that tend to run together. And then there's track 15. I love how Billy Idol somehow manages to channel Burl Ives, pulling us all around the fire and telling us it'll be alright while winking with mirth at the absurdity of the whole Christmas enterprise.

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AuthorJohn Proctor