I don’t celebrate Christmas, but I do celebrate the spirit of a season (in the Western World) where most people seem just a little bit brighter and cheerier and kinder and nicer than usual. Wish we could bottle some of that spirit and sprinkle it around as needed during the rest of the year. Then again, the composer of the song that reminds of what we need a little of doesn’t likely celebrate Christmas either. His name is Jerry Herman, raised in a middle class Jewish environment in Jersey City, NJ by Ruth and Harry Herman and he is still alive and well residing in Miami Beach, Florida.
The song “We Need A Little Christmas”originated in the Broadway musical Mame, inserted for Angela Lansbury to sing after she lost her fortune in the Wall Street Crash of 1929. Less than money, what she was looking for was a bit of seasonal cheer. It hadn’t snowed a single flake that year, but Mame observed that she had grown a little leaner, grown a little colder, grown a little sadder, and grown a little older. A stock market crash can do that to you.
And to summon up the spirit, here’s the peppy, infectious version sung by Johnny Mathis, reminding us that …
We need a little music,
Need a little laughter,
Need a little singing
Ringing through the rafter,
And we need a little snappy
“Happy ever after”.