We can’t ignore America’s contribution to our catalog of Christmas favorites! Did you ever wonder who wrote Jingle Bells? It’s one of the first carols we learn as children and is so much a part of our lives that most of us probably never even have thought about the fact that somebody really did write it! That somebody was James Pierpont and he wrote both words and music for the song which was to be part of a Thanksgiving program at his church in Boston back in 1857. Jingle Bells became such a hit that the children in his choir were asked to sing it over and over again every Christmas….and we have been singing it ever since! This shows how the church has affected even secular carols. Feel free to sing Jingle Bells when you're out and about, laughing all the way.
If anybody is still under the misconception that kids’ music is not as influential as more adult genres, consider the fact that not only Jingle Bells but O Little Town of Bethlehem had their starts in kids’ Christmas programs! The writer of O Little Town of Bethlehem was the influential American theologian of the Nineteenth Century, Bishop Phillips Brooks. Bishop Brooks wrote the beautiful words that we all know in 1868 in Philadelphia as he recalled a trip he had made to the Holy Land several years before. His organist, Lewis Redner, decided to write music for Brooks’ lyrics so that the song could be used by his children’s choir at Christmas.
These carols are fun to sing by children of all ages. I hope this holiday season brings out the child in you with a renewed sense of wonder.
Please stay on topic.