RedEye

Christmas puzzler: Where are the new hits?

It’s the question that gets asked every holiday season: Why can’t anyone come up with a original, classic Christmas song anymore?

Many have tried, including Justin Bieber, The Killers, Christina Aguilera and even Snoop Dogg. But the last artist to do it was Mariah Carey, whose song “All I Want for Christmas” came out in 1994.

I asked artists performing at 103.5 KISS FM’s Jingle Ball concert at the United Center Dec. 9 for their take on the subject, and they, too, struggled to come up with an explanation.

Robin Thicke believes there hasn’t been any recent classics simply because “Nobody has made a good one.” Flo Rida, who years ago rapped on a “Jingle Bells” remix featuring Trey Songz and the Dixie Chicks for retail giant Gap, feels it’s just too difficult to compete with the classics. “Those records are timeless,” said Flo Rida.

Travie McCoy seemed genuinely intrigued with the question. “Nothing sticks,” McCoy said of recent Christmas songs, though he does have a soft spot for TLC’s “Sleigh Ride.” “It’s time for a good Christmas song. Maybe I should start working on one.”

Enrique Iglesias? He also seemed stumped. “The classics are so good, they’re tough to beat,” Iglesias said. “Those songs are embedded in our brains for such a long time.” Iglesias, however, likely won’t throw his hat in the race. He said he has never considered writing an original Christmas song during a career that spans nearly 20 years.

Has Iglesias stayed away from yuletide carols because he finds them cheesy?

“Are you kidding me? I like cheese as long as it’s good,” the always self-deprecating Iglesias said. “If it’s a good song, I’ll sing it. If I could write one of those (Christmas) songs, are you kidding me? I totally would. I’ve just never sat down and tried to write a Christmas song.”

The artist performing at Jingle Ball who seemed most interested in writing a Christmas album was Avril Lavigne. She told digitalspy.com in October that one of her goals is to release a Christmas album. Whether that will happen any time soon is unclear. Lavigne opted not to speak to media at the United Center. Regardless, don’t expect Lavigne to come up with the next original Christmas classic, should she go through with the album.

“I would have to do covers, though,” Lavigne told digitalspy.com. “I love really traditional Christmas songs.”

lgomez@tribune.com | Twitter @TribLuis

For more celebrity news and sightings in Chicago, go to chicagotribune.com/luis

Copyright © 2015, RedEye
Related Content
  • Group to Park District: Build DuSable Park

    Group to Park District: Build DuSable Park

    Where Lake Michigan meets the Chicago River is three acres of overgrown weeds and shrubs. It is referred to by some as a "ghost park" because it is hidden in plain sight.

  • Rejoice! Adele's new album is rumored to arrive this fall

    Rejoice! Adele's new album is rumored to arrive this fall

    There's a fire starting in my heart and it's making me realize it's been kind of a while since Adele released an album. Her last full-length "21" dropped in 2011 and I barely remember that year it feels so long ago. But now, there's some good news to fill our recently Adele-less lives and it's...

  • Chicago rappers Probcause and Saba team up on 'M.I.A.'

    Chicago rappers Probcause and Saba team up on 'M.I.A.'

    Welcome to RedEye's "Song of the Day," an ongoing feature where music reporter Josh Terry or another RedEye staff member highlights something they're listening to. Some days the track will be new, and some days it will be old. No matter what, each offering is something you should check out. Check...

  • Trump vows never to eat Oreos again, citing move from Chicago to Mexico

    Trump vows never to eat Oreos again, citing move from Chicago to Mexico

    Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump repeated his claim Tuesday evening that he would stop eating Oreos, citing the cookie maker's decision to close a plant in Chicago and move it to Mexico.

  • Let's talk about this new Justin Bieber song 'What Do You Mean?'

    Let's talk about this new Justin Bieber song 'What Do You Mean?'

    Don't get me wrong, Justin Bieber is still really embarrassing. He's the young pop star who recently said something only a 21-year-old would say, "Now being 21, and going through some hardships, I think you can hear that in my vocals." This is a guy who, last year at a charity gala benefiting AIDS...

  • Illinois lottery winners have to wait for payout due to budget impasse

    Illinois lottery winners have to wait for payout due to budget impasse

    After years of struggling financially, Susan Rick thought things were looking up when her boyfriend won $250,000 from the Illinois Lottery last month. She could stop working seven days a week, maybe fix up the house and take a trip to Minnesota to visit her daughter.

Comments
Loading
75°