December Derangement Part 5: The Final Countdown

PREAMBLE/DISCLAIMER/PRE-NOTE/WHATEVER YOU WANNA CALL IT: This is something I started working on last December with a blog I was writing for before Stitched Up. It was never completed because of stuff that went down with the site. It doesn’t exist anymore, but hey, that’s besides the point. The first 3 parts of this series will be a republication of the posts I wrote last year, with some revisions made. You’ll know where any major changes are (like any changes of decisions) when you see italicized text like this. After part 3, everything is brand spankin’ new. So, enjoy!

Part 1 spread ’em out, Part 2 weeded ’em out, Part 3 shocked ’em, and Part 4 defined ’em as contenders. Now, part 5 will crown one of ’em.

IT’S THE FINALLLL COUNTDOWWWNNN!!!!

This is a big blog, like I alluded to earlier. The Elite 8, Final 4, and Championship will be decided in this blog post. If I were you, I wouldn’t be a tool and I’d read the whole thing instead of just jumping to the end. It’s Christmas and you need an excuse to get away from your weird uncle, and plus it’s all about the journey and the friends you make along the way.

A lot of possibilities can happen in this one. A favorite could walk away with it, or Cinderella may pull off a Christmas miracle. Before I begin, I just want to say this: all the songs included in this bracket are good and the choices were (usually) pretty damn tough. No love is lost for any of these songs, but there has to be a winner and some losers.

So, one more time, let’s kick it off in the Tree Region!

#1 Fairytale of New York-The Pogues vs #2 Christmas Time Is Here-Vince Guaraldi

Guaraldi’s classic tune is very relaxing and captures the essence of the holiday season, but the emotional and personal aspect of “Fairytale” mixed with it’s layered musical elements–the wind instruments and Irish music are amazing–is enough to push The Pogues to the Final 4. The Fairytale continues.

To the Milk and Cookies Region. Winner here faces off against “Fairytale of New York.”

#1 Santa Claus Is Comin’ To Town-Bruce Springsteen vs #2 All I Want For Christmas Is You-Mariah Carey

Jesus…

This is a matchup that very well could’ve ended up as the title showdown if they weren’t in the same region. They’re both songs with a lot of energy and passion. Mariah’s high note is amazing and Bruce’s on stage antics are always a hit. One’s a great example of pop at its finest, one’s a great example of rock magic. It’s really a toss up, so much like what I did with John Lennon/Dropkick Murphys, I need a tie breaker.

These songs weren’t released yesterday. It’s been a long time; Mariah’s song is like two decades old now. So, whoever can perform the song just as well live today wins it. I don’t have to prove Bruce’s abilities in a concert; if you know anything about The Boss, you know that he still kills it with high octane rock ‘n’ roll, and he’s in his 60’s.

Mariah, on the other hand, is in her 40’s and isn’t doing too hot. Just watch this performance from last year. It almost ruins the original, it’s that bad.

“Oh baby All I Want For Christmassssssss is for my voice to be fixeddddddd!!!!!!!!”

The Boss wins a tough one and makes a big statement moving forward.

The Stockings Region is next.

#1 The Christmas Song-Nat King Cole vs #3 O Holy Night-Josh Groban

Two power ballads that can hit with the best of them. King Nat and The Grobz; it’s a shame one has to go. But, I think the King is losing his crown here. Why? Because, like I said in the past, I’m not the biggest fan of the religious Christmas tunes in comparison to the ones about family, Santa, and flying deer wannabes. I know lil bby Jesus is the reason for the season, yet those songs are usually a bigger buzzkill than Buzz Killington (because he was quartered on the port side!). 9/10 church songs blows”Little Drummer Boy?” I’ll fuckin’ pass. Would rather listen to Kim Kardasian talk about the 2008 economic crisis for an hour and a half than that boring ass song.

But I genuinely LOVE Groban’s track. NKC is obviously an amazing singer (thanks to smoking about 348 packs of cancer sticks a day) but Grobs is just as good. Plus, those final “NOELLLLLLLLLLLLLLL”‘s are pure serenity. Groban had to do a whole lot more than NKC did in my good–make a religious song really friggin’ good–and he did that. And that’s why the Grobz train continues to move down the line! C’MON RIDE THE TRAIN TO THE FINAL FOUR!!!!

The Grob Show will battle the winner of the North Pole Region.

#9 The Season’s Upon Us-Dropkick Murphys vs #2 Christmas in Hollis-Run-DMC

Both are different in terms of lyrical content, unique in terms of musical content, and just overall bangers. Both depict a certain way of life in a certain area of the country. Tiebreaker? What I can relate to more, and that’s “The Season’s Upon Us.” I love east coast rap as much as the next guy, but the Irish punk rockers just nail what it’s like to come together with a huge ass family like mine. Sometimes I wanna deck more than the halls when dealing with relatives. Unless, of course, they’re reading this. In that case, peace and love guys!! Peace and love!! Who would’ve thought? The #9 seed makes it to the Final 4.

And then there were four…

#1 Fairytale of New York-The Pogues vs #1 Santa Claus is Comin’ To Town-Bruce Springsteen

Maybe the toughest decision of the whole thing right here. I go with the #1 seed…see what I did there?

But nah, after a long periodicially time I decided that it has to be The Pogues. Why? Its originality.

Sure, Bruce murders this song. It’s a straight up masterpiece. But that song is covered by a hundred other artists. He’s (arguably) the best to do it, and maybe that helps his case, but in comparison no one’s really got what The Pogues has. There’s no debate about which version of “Fairytale” is better because nothing else compares, word to Chris and the boys. The Pogues are in the final.

#3 O Holy Night-Josh Groban vs #9 The Season’s Upon Us-The Dropkick Murphys

Guys, it’s time for the Grobz train to come to a screeching halt. “The Season’s Upon Us” is the perfect anti-Christmas-but-also-still-pro-Christmas Christmas song. It’s too good. Today, you all will be put in very similar situations, so you should understand where the Murphys are coming from. I love the Grobz, but his time has come to a close in this tournament. The final has a Quincy representative!

This is it: the final. Only one song can win. An odds-on favorite, and a song that “came in 18-to-1.”

#1 Fairytale of New York-The Pogues vs #9 The Season’s Upon Us-Dropkick Murphys

The Pogues had to knock off a lot of amazing songs to get here, and it will have to do it one more time in order to take the crown. But Dropkick Murphys are in the final. Wow. What a ride, huh? Knocking off one #1 seed is quite an accomplishment, but getting a second to the body count in the final is a storybook finish.

“The Season’s Upon Us” is a tremendous song. It diverges from your typical merry and happy holiday song, but still puts a big smile on your face.

Yet “Fairytale of New York” does that too. And then some.

“Fairytale” is musical layered and epic, and strikes a cord emotionally. We never really find out what happened to that couple in the song, do we? but as Shane McGowan said, despite its somber tone and, er, alternative message, there’s always hope at the end of it because “love never dies.” The song leaves a lot up to the listener to decide upon its conclusion. Everyone can make what they want out of it.

That’s what a good song–not just a good Christmas song–is all about, Charlie Brown. I realize its maybe not the most popular Christmas song out there, but that’s not what the bracket is set up to decide. “Fairytale of New York” is a song that can be enjoyed at any time of the year. It’s rewarding in December, but powerful enough to be listened too in February, May or October.

And that’s why “Fairytale of New York” is the best Christmas song and our champion.

Thank you for following along and I hope the outcome didn’t piss you off too much. If you have any disagreements or wanna tweet at me your favorite Christmas songs, drop me a line on Twitter-@BfitzP17.

On behalf of everyone at Stitched Up, I wanna wish you all a very Merry Christmas! I leave you with one last creepy picture of The Carpenters…

…and our winner.

Can’t watch it on the site due to copyright issues; sry. But trust me: it’s worth watching on YouTube.