Christmas is coming – and I need a Christmas song in my blog! Should I go for tradition (carols, J.S.Bach) or a modern pop song (Coldplay)? What would be your choice? Do you sing carols? Do you sing at all or do you prefer listening to music?
There are many beautiful Christmas carols, very old ones which tell the story of the first Christmas. But then, more and more contemporary bands and musicians choose to release Christmas songs or albums – like Coldplay has now done with their song “Christmas lights”. What does Christmas stand for in this song, does the song offer a new, modern interpretation of the old tradition, the old story? Let’s have a look at the lyrics.
Not a good start – but obviously something many people experience nowadays:
“Christmas night, another fight, tears we cried a flood
Got all kinds of poisoning, poison in my blood.”
People expect too much from this holiday. Families come together because they want to or they think they have to. Anger and well hidden resentment surface like poison. It all ends in tears and accusations. You could just go away, leave the scene behind:
“I took my feet
To Oxford Street
Trying to right a wrong
Just walk away
Those windows say
But I can’t believe she’s gone.”
It doesn’t work, it doesn’t help, it doesn’t bring her back. He loves her and always will and she doesn’t – the old story, the same song. „But I’m up here holding on to all those chandeliers of hope”. So there is still hope. The city Christmas lights stand for this hope. No city without illumination, no home without candles and lights. That’s what Christmas is all about, isn’t it? But there is something else missing: ”Oh when you’re still waiting for the snow to fall, doesn’t really feel like Christmas at all.”
So there we go: Coldplay-Christmas means music, lights, snow, and yes, reconciliation, love, relationships – that’s something! I guess that is the least common factor necessary for people to celebrate Christmas together. It has become a festival of family and friends, of gifts, of decoration and good food. That’s fair enough. Of course you can have Christmas without Christ. Christians can’t claim Christmas for themselves any longer.
So which songs am I going to sing on Christmas? I have to admit: I choose the carols and J.S.Bach over Coldplay. For me, there is more meaning in those old carols. They don’t just hope for reconciliation, they tell the actual story of reconciliation. At the end – Jesus is the reason for the season – believe it or not… 😉
I like to listen to Coldplay’s “Christmas Lights” on the radio while driving my car, though… 😉
I wish you all a Merry Christmas, no matter how and why you celebrate it!