Music Box: On The 6th Day Of (Jeffrey)Christ-mas…

We can forgive Talyor Momsen (pictured here as Cindy Lou Who) for HOW THE GRINCH STOLE CHRISTMAS. But GOSSIP GIRL? Not so much.

…Jeffrey gave to you… “Where Are You Christmas” by (gads!) Faith Hill.

Now, I realize I just might be losing any musical credibility and trust I’ve gained over the years; I mean, I expect and accept the snickering, but I stand my ground with this one. Who could have imagined that the grimy, dank big-budget Jim Carey version of Dr. Seuss’ eternal HOW THE GRINCH STOLE CHRISTMAS would beget a modern Christmas treasure, sung by likes of the bland, Country- politan Faith Hill no less?

Well, that’s exactly what schlock-meister composer James Horner gave us, because what ordinarily serves as an irritant in a standard epic blockbuster (say, “My Heart Will Go On” nearly sinking the great TITANIC) is the norm in a Christmas song – schmaltzy, tingling feelings, swelled with copious emotion is the benchmark of most holiday tunes, and on that point Horner delivers here tenfold.  Hill’s natural flair for over-emoting to masquerade a competent-yet-flimsy voice (even here she’s wobbly on the lows and strains on the crescendos) was a good 2nd choice performer (Co-writer Mariah Carey’s version never appeared anywhere, because of some legalities with her ex-husband, and while her 1994 holiday collection is a miraculous anomaly – read about it HERE – I’m not sure the post-divorced Carey, seeped in her Hip Hop harlot insurrection, would have done “Where Are You Christmas” any favors – I can’t imagine it with porn-lite breathiness. So, thanks Tommy Motolla!)

The most magical thing about “Where Are You Christmas” is its universality.  It doesn’t belong to Hill; I can imagine a great vocalist doing wonders with the sentimentality of the lyric, the mush of the arrangement, the overt histrionics of the bridge, just as I can envision a neophyte understanding its poignancy.  It’s what Christmas songs are made for.  And “Where Are You Christmas” is what Christmas songs are made of.

Faith Hill’s original theme from the film…


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