David Bowie, Bing Crosby, Jimmy Fallon, The Pogues: 8 Best Holiday Duets [LISTEN]
Duets are special. They tend to carve out little moments in time when two artists link up and complement their talents to the delight of listeners. There are tons of holiday duets out there, but we decided to put a list together of some classic, some silly and some forgotten team efforts. Bing Crosby, David Bowie, Jimmy Fallon and The Pogues all made the cut.
8. Will Ferrell and John C. Reily - "Peace on Earth/Little Drummer Boy"
Alright, let's get these two goofballs out of the way. A few years ago Ferrell and Reilly, both of whom are pretty musical fellows, teamed up to poke fun at another classic duet. What's surprising is that they actually sing it really well, harmonizing between two songs. The laughs come at the end when they get a little fiesty and Ferrell ends up knocking over a Reilly's Christmas tree. If you don't understand the joke, head to number five on the list.
7. Mariah Carey, Jimmy Fallon and The Roots - "All I Want for Christmas is You"
Carey struck gold in 1994 when she released her original song "All I Want for Christmas is You." It's been a holiday staple for the past 20 years, and you will probably hear it in shopping malls in December for the rest of your life. The singer joined Fallon and The Roots on Late Night back in 2012 during a superb Classroom Instruments sketch. It's a marvel to watch songs come together so well with plastic pianos and bongos. Thankfully, Fallon and the boys brought the idea over to The Tonight Show, and they've reworked "All About That Bass," "Blurred Lines" and "Let It Go."
6. John Denver and The Muppets - "Little Saint Nick"
Thankfully, in 1979, Denver and Jim Henson's Muppets got together for a televised Christmas special that would eventually be released as an album. The "Rocky Mountain High" singer and the crazy critters collaborated on a number of holiday tunes, but their version of 1963's "Little Saint Nick" by The Beach Boys is an absolute delight. Okay, so you can really only hear a variety of Muppets throughout the song, but Denver's in there. I swear.
5. David Bowie and Bing Crosby - "Peace on Earth/Little Drummer Boy"
Watch the video below. Now do you get number eight? It's no wonder Ferrell and Reilly joked about the performance. In 1977, Bowie was a star with two albums in the Billboard 200 - Low and "Heroes". Crosby was well past his prime, opting for a holiday special. The dialog prior to the song is a little dry, but the pair really make something special happen. They take a classic like "Little Drummer Boy" and mix it with a then contemporary tune "Peace on Earth." It was almost like a passing of the torch in some ways - Crosby gave Bowie his blessing after the performance. The legend ended up dying before the special aired.
4. The Pogues and Kirsty MacColl - "Fairytale of New York"
"Fairytale of New York" may be one of the most underrated holiday tunes of all time. Pogues vocalist Shane MacGowan kicks things off about spending Christmas in the drunk tank before the band joins in and Kirsty MacColl recalls what happened. The melody is beautiful, but the lyrics are deceiving. It's a nice change of pace actually - things can go wrong on Christmas. This isn't your grandma's Christmas song.
3. Ray Charles and Betty Carter - "Baby It's Cold Outside"
This song was written specifically as a duet, and it's become one of the most popular holiday songs. It's a timeless struggle between two young lovers. The man wants the woman to stay the woman wants to leave. The man's only ally? The weather. Charles and Carter are simply sublime.
2. Elvis Presley and Martina McBride - "Blue Christmas"
Personally, I think only The King should only be allowed to sing "Blue Christmas" because his voice just brings out the best in the song. Add McBride into the mix and forget about it.
1. Bing Crosby and Frank Sinatra - "White Christmas"
The simplicity of this duet really captures the essence of a good holiday tune. Crosby carries the song, but since Ol' Blue Eyes is involved, you have to listen. It's one of those moments in time your parents and grandparents probably look back on and tell you what a big deal it was to watch the pair collaborate on Sinatra's holiday special. And those voices! They don't make them like that anymore.