The Story Behind The Kinks’ ‘Father Christmas’
via The Kinks / Youtube
There are several constants across the centuries-long canon of Christmas music. However, The Kinks perhaps didn’t listen to the merry and joyous message of the holidays when they penned their classic tune, “Father Christmas.”
Their song “Father Christmas,” which refers to Santa Claus as he is known in the UK and Australia, is one of the most out-of-the-ordinary cuts from their discography. The song became a staple in the live performances of the more aggressive members of the rock and roll scene after its 1977 release and accompanying video, which starred Ray Davies as the song’s protagonist.
Davies once said of the song that juxtaposed both the bitter and sweet feeling of the holidays. “I love the humor of it, and the aggression and bitterness,” he said. “I could see the faces of my parents when Christmas came around. They had to struggle to make ends meet. We kind of got what we needed, but there was something fake about the holiday.”
In “Father Christmas,” a little boy had a really out-of-the-ordinary Christmas. He finds himself playing Father Christmas despite his lack of faith, only to be robbed by children who claim they aren’t interested in gifts but rather his money. He makes two requests: a job for his dad and a machine gun to warn off the kids who robbed him, should Santa Claus be real.
Listen to the song below.