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Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)

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"Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)" is a Christmas song originally sung by Darlene Love and included on the 1963 Christmas compilation album, A Christmas Gift for You from Philles Records.  The song was written by Ellie Greenwich and Jeff Barry along with Phil Spector, with the intentions of being sung by Ronnie Spector of The Ronettes.  According to Darlene Love, Spector was not able to put as much emotion into the song as needed. Instead, Love was brought into the studio to record the song which became a big success over time and one of Darlene Love's signature tunes.

In December 2010, Rolling Stone magazine ranked "Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)" first on its list of The Greatest Rock and Roll Christmas Songs, saying that "nobody can match Love's emotion and sheer vocal power."[1]

In other media

Darlene Love has performed the song every year since 1986 on the final new episode before Christmas of Late Night with David Letterman (NBC 1986-92) and the Late Show with David Letterman (CBS 1993–2015). One exception was 2007, when Love was unable to perform due to the 2007 Writers Guild of America strike,[2] with a repeat of her 2006 performance shown instead.

On Letterman, the song is always performed with Paul Shaffer and the show's house band (The World's Most Dangerous Band at NBC, later the CBS Orchestra).  The band has been augmented over the years by additional strings and other instruments, as well as a full choir.  In 2000, the The United States Air Force Singing Sergeants were the choir.

The song was also used during the main titles for the film Gremlins.  It also appears in a memorable scene in the film GoodFellas, when some of the members of the crew foolishly spend money from the Lufthansa Heist on lavish items, thereby drawing unwanted attention.

On the December 17, 2011 holiday episode of Saturday Night Live, Jimmy Fallon sung a version of the song with lyrics reflecting upon his past experiences with the show. In 2012, the song served as the finale of the ABC Family made-for-TV film The Mistle-tones.

Cover versions

"Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)" was not widely recognized after its initial release; however, it has since been covered many times by different artists over the years. The first cover was recorded by Quiet Jungle in 1968 for the LP The Story of Snoopy's Christmas. The second and most widely known was recorded by U2 in July 1987 during a sound check at a stop during their Joshua Tree Tour in Glasgow, Scotland. Darlene Love provided backing vocals for U2, and the song was eventually released on the A Very Special Christmas compilation album in 1987, and later on the Unreleased & Rare album on "The Complete U2" digital box set in 2004. Bruce Springsteen covered the song at many of his Christmas shows in New Jersey, however none of the concerts have officially been released.


Lyrics

The snow's coming down 
I'm watching it fall
Lots of people around
Baby please come home

The church bells in town
All singing in song
Full of happy sounds
Baby please come home

(Chorus)
They're singing "Deck the Halls"
But it's not like Christmas at all
'Cause I remember when you were here
And all the fun we had last year

Pretty lights on the tree
I'm watching them shine
You should be here with me
Baby please come home<

(Chorus)

If there was a way
I'd hold back this tear
But it's Christmas day
Please, please, please, please
Baby please come home

References

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