Sunday, December 19, 2010

White Christmas

We continue our countdown to Christmas with Irving Berlin's monster holiday classic, "White Christmas".

The morning after Irving Berlin wrote "White Christmas", he went to his office and excitedly told his secretary, "Grab your pen and take down this song.  I just wrote the best song I've ever written---Hell, I just wrote the best song anybody's ever written!"
Irving Berlin Was Born Israel Baline in Russia.  He is Considered One Of the Greatest Songwriters in History, Having Penned 1,500 Songs.

He wrote the words in 1940 while sitting at poolside at the Arizona Biltmore Resort in Phoenix, Arizona.

Arizona Biltmore Resort, Phoenix, Arizona
The song was introduced to Bing Crosby in the 1942 musical, "Holiday Inn".  In the film, he sings a duet with Marjorie Reynolds.  The song received the Academy Award for best original song.

Crosby first publicly performed the song on Christmas day in 1941.  The song topped the charts at the end of 1941 and continued atop them well into 1942.

Bing Crosby and His One-Of-A-Kind Voice
It has been noted that the song's mix of melancholy---"just like the ones I used to know"---with comforting images of home---"where the treetops glisten"---resonated especially strongly with listeners during WWII, and the Armed Forces Network was flooded with requests for it.  It was number 1 on the US charts for 11 weeks in 1942 and also hit number 1 during the holiday seasons of 1945 and 1946.  Crosby eventually sold over 50 million copies.  The Guiness Book of World Records currently lists the song as a 100-million seller, including all versions.

The recording was broadcast on the radio as a pre-arranged signal during the US evacuation of Saigon on April 30, 1975.

             White Christmas

I'm dreaming of a white Christmas
Just like the ones I used to know
Where the treetops glisten and children listen
To hear sleigh bells in the snow
I'm dreaming of a white Christmas
With every Christmas card I write
May your days be merry and bright
And may all your Christmases be white


  1. Ah, this I know!
    Very interesting story!
    Always nice your posts,ciao Clint!

    Good sunday!

  2. Thank you for this story. This song is one of my favorite.
    Have a nice day.
    Many greetings Sabine

  3. Bing has always been my favorite. Reminds me of being little and eating dinner w/my whole family at Christmastime!!!

  4. Really a very interesting story. The song is a must at Christmas and the classic of the Christmas songs.