Certainly one of the most widely known and popular (in the United States) of all Christmas songs. Sing along:
(This YouTube video – which bills itself as the “Original Jingle Bells Animation Clip” – includes clips from a variety of sources, including animated cartoons, Christmas movies and TV shows, with karaoke-style sing along lyrics overlaid. It’s quite well done, I think.)
I’ve got versions of “Jingle Bells” from a whole bunch of artists, though predictably more from the jazz and pop side of things than classical, folk or Celtic musicians. Even David Hasselhoff of “Bay Watch” recorded it (ugh). The jazz versions can be quite interesting – particularly the ones by Duke Ellington, Ella Fitzgerald and Fats Waller. And more traditional/predictable versions, like those by Nat King Cole (and by his daughter Natalie) and Bing Crosby.
It’s odd how many artists have recorded versions. It’s a fun song, but for kids – it’s not really beautiful, but it is upbeat and easy to sing. Its real merit is as something we can sing, rather than as something to listen to on holiday evenings. In any case, we will hear it far too often, or at least the basic tune, in store muzak and commercials long before the holidays are over.
Nonetheless, here are a few versions I find reasonably listenable or interesting in other ways: