Sometimes modern versions of Christmas tunes conjure up images of retailers hawking blenders or pants instead of family and togetherness. Paul McCartney’s 1979 tune “Wonderful Christmastime” is a mainstay in seasonal ads, and takes on the tune exist from Kylie Minogue, Amy Grant, Demi Lovato, Barenaked Ladies, Hilary Duff, and countless others. We’d argue even Sir McCartney’s original version has trouble standing out from the endless pack of covers.
That’s why Caleb Groh’s rendition of “Wonderful Christmastime” is so… wonderful. With restrained keys and gentle voice, the Nashville songwriter gifts us with four minutes of pure-spirited holiday cheer. Groh says, “I released a couple Christmas albums as Caleb and the Caroling Caravan in ’09 and ’10, so this song feels long overdue. I wanted to take the most disliked Christmas song of all time, and flip it on its head. The original feels kind of like you’re walking into a Christmas party you don’t want to be at, already in a bad mood from an argument in the car on the way over. I wanted this version to sound like a good cry by the fireplace.”
Listen to Caleb Groh’s “Wonderful Christmastime” below.