One of my favorite Christmas songs is “I Believe In Father Christmas” by Greg Lake. I first heard it in the mid-80’s and it was written in the mid-70’s. It has great guitar, large orchestra, choir, etc. But I could never quite catch all of the words. Some of them bothered me a little, and I didn’t go huntnig for the rest, afraid of what I might find.
My wife has recently shown appreciation for it, but was also disturbed by some of the words, so I looked them up. Here’s a version on youtube:
The question is, does he believe Jesus is the fake, or Santa? And if it’s Jesus, should that affect my enjoyment of the song? He isn’t blasphemous, he merely implies that he doesn’t believe.
And what about the last line. Is he right?
3 thoughts on “Who is Father Christmas?”
The lyrics sure aren’t clear, but I think what he’s saying is that Father Christmas is a simplified, commercialized (“they sold me”) symbol of Jesus, a “disguise” if you will, that he has seen through, as well as seeing through simplified “everything’s going to be simple and happy and there will not be any troubles” ideas.
But I don’t know. 🙂
I love this song. I was glad to see the lyrics because for the past 8 years or so I have listened to this song at Christmas and couldn’t really make out some of the lyrics. My family listens to this song every Christmas right before Christmas dinner and it brings many tears. I really don’t think I’ll share the lyrics with my family for fear of ruining the moment.
It’s always been fairly clear that this emotive song is about being conned into believing in nonsense, targeting the niave hopes of the young. There is a biiter sweet element to it, a love of what Christmas should be corrupted by propaganda. Whether you believe that is commercialism, Father Christmas or religion is your choice. All seem likely candidates but my guess would veer towards the first or last as they are most likely to elicit a bitter reaction. I wouldn’t say the lyrics are disturbing, I think they effectively represent a lot of peoples feelings towards Christmas as they grow out of the wide eyed expection and magic of childhood – a feeling that only returns for some of us when viewing Christmas through the eyes of our own young children later in life. It’s that aspect that makes this song not only beautiful to listen to but thought provoking.