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I'll Be Home On Christmas Day

December 27, 2008 | Music

The biggest daily newspaper in Sweden, Aftonbladet, ranked Elvis' "I'll Be Home On Christmas Day" as the second best Christmas song ever.

In reality it's an impossible task to choose only one of Elvis' Christmas tracks, the writer of the article points out, and wonders how one can choose between "Blue Christmas" and "Santa Claus Is Back In Town. Or between the beautiful ballads "I'll Be Home For Christmas" and "If Every Day Was Like Christmas."

But, the choice gets to be "I'll Be Home On Christmas Day," the reason being that the song deserves more attention, the writer goes on. And because "Elvis takes the train between country, gospel and soul and creates a song that would have qualified for a place on his best album ever, From Elvis In Memphis."

The Christmas #1 was Darlene Love with "Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)" from Phil Spector's 1963 Christmas album "A Christmas Gift For You". There is a link with Elvis; as a member of The Blossoms Darlene Love sang backup vocals for Elvis on his '68 Comeback Special.
Updated December 28th. with the reaction from composer Michael Jarrett:

Songwriter Michael Jarrett, who also wrote the haunting "I'm Leavin'" for Presley, was thrilled to hear the news this morning. "I was reminded today that sometimes one can reach a milestone even at my age", Jarrett comments. "It was very exciting for me to hear that one of the biggest newspapers in Sweden ranked Elvis' "I'll Be Home On Christmas Day" the second best Christmas song ever! This is truly an honor for me as a songwriter. There are many wonderful Christmas songs that we all enjoy each year, and having my song chosen to be second best is quite a thrill".

Michael Jarrett will be touring Europe in May 2009 as part of "The Original Elvis Tribute 2009", which also features a.o. Duke Bardwell and Ted Roddy.
Source:Elvis Today Blog
italianfan wrote on December 27, 2008
This is a great song, i only discovered it over this christmas but i will definatly listen to it throughout the year even though it is a christmas song.
Peter @ ElvisMatters wrote on December 27, 2008
Proof again that journalists do know what they're talking about - once in a while... :-)
JimmyCool wrote on December 27, 2008
The best version of this song is the alternate take released on "Platinum" back in 1997... take 4 I think it was... it's just awesome!
Steve Morse wrote on December 28, 2008
"The best version of this song", is the original album version. It is subtle, soulful and full of meaning. The slowed-down, blues-tinged ending is wonderful.
Pedro Nuno wrote on December 29, 2008
I Love this song so much that booth its versions are synonymous of Christmas for me. Can't imagine my Christmas without it (or Elvis Christmas Albums)! It’s good to see that Elvis legacy is started to be a fact (better later than never…)
Aron wrote on December 30, 2008
I like this wonderful song. I like all those released versions, i.e. (from May 1971) Platinum #4: take 4, TT&F #4: take 9, the master take 8, and (from June 1971) released on I Sing All Kinds: the remake, I think I like this best.