By Marty Rosenbaum

The holiday season can be magical. The music that fills the airwaves is no exception.

Some of the most recognizable Christmas songs have quite the story though.

NME put together a list of 16 weird facts about popular Christmas songs (read the full list here) and it’s absolutely fantastic.

Here’s a few items that stand out.

– ‘Merry Xmas Everybody’ was recorded in the studio next door to that in which John Lennon was recording ‘Mind Games’
– White Christmas’ ended the Vietnam War in 1975 – it was used as the radio code signal for the evacuation of Vietnamese people who had assisted the US from Saigon.
– ‘Happy Xmas (War Is Over)’ was the result of John Lennon realising, after the success of ‘Imagine’ that it worked best to “put your political message across with a little honey”.

– The idea of ‘Rudolph The Red Nosed-Reindeer’ having a bright red nose was originally rejected as a red nose is a signifier of chronic alcoholism.
– The video for ‘Last Christmas’ was the last time that George Michael was filmed without a beard.

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