Thursday, 1 December 2016

Christmas music (I wish it could be breakfast everyday)

Published in Shetland Life magazine, December 2016

I don’t want to come across as a grinchy humbugger. I really do like Christmas. What could be a finer way to spend time than relaxing with friends and family with good food and some drams when the weather is fierce outside?

But I’m not too keen on being force-fed Christmas for weeks in the run-up to the actual date. By far my the most irritating aspect of this is the mind-numbing genre of ‘Christmas Music’.

To qualify as Christmas music, there is a checklist: sleigh bells, church bells, children's choirs, insipid major melodies and/or lyrics which repeat the word ‘Christmas’, ‘snow’ or ‘santa’ as many times as possible.

It might sound a little extreme, but I find the way that music is often ‘used’ at Christmas to be an affront to its beauty and artistry. It is frequently music at its most unadventurous, formulaic, predictable, sentimental, puerile and repetitive, and it is the repetition that I find to be the most difficult to deal with.