On this date in 1946 American composer Leroy Anderson penned the holiday favorite, Sleigh Ride. Though long associated with Christmas and played each holiday season as a classic Sleigh Ride was never officially a Christmas song. But given its cult status as staple of the season, we declare today Sleigh Ride Day of Christmas. There are 168 days left until Christmas.

The song was born during a golden era of Christmas classics. From 1942 to 1950 many of the classics of Christmas were written and made famous: White Christmas, Let It Snow, and many others, including Sleigh Ride, shot to popularity. Originally written as an instrumental the song was picked up, recorded and made famous in 1949 first by Arthur Fiedler and the Boston Pops with this recording:

This recording caused the song to become the signature piece of the Boston Pops and to this day remains in demand during holiday performances.

In 1950 Mitchell Parish put words to the song, never once mentioning Christmas (just like Jingle Bells):

Just hear those sleigh bells jingling,
Ring-ting-tingling too,
Come on, it’s lovely weather
For a sleigh ride together with you,
Outside the snow is falling
And friends are calling, “YOO HOO !”,
Come on, it’s lovely weather
For a sleigh ride together with you.

Giddy up, giddy up, giddy up,
Let’s go…let’s look at the show,
We’re riding in a wonderland of snow.
Giddy up, giddy up, giddy up,
It’s grand… just holding your hand,
We’re riding along with a song
Of a wintry fairy land.

Our cheeks are nice and rosy,
And comfy cozy are we,
We’re snuggled up together
Like two birds of a feather would be,
Let’s take that road before us,
And sing a chorus or two,
Come on, it’s lovely weather
For a sleigh ride together with you.

Just hear those sleigh bells jingling,
Ring-ting-tingling too,
Come on, it’s lovely weather
For a sleigh ride together with you,
Outside the snow is falling
And friends are calling, “Yoo hoo”,
Come on, it’s lovely weather
For a sleigh ride together with you.

Giddy up, giddy up, giddy up,
Let’s go…let’s look at the show,
We’re riding in a wonderland of snow.
Giddy up, giddy up, giddy up,
It’s grand…just holding your hand,
We’re riding along with a song
Of a wintry fairy land.

Our cheeks are nice and rosy,
And comfy cozy are we,
We’re snuggled up together
Like two birds of a feather would be,
Let’s take that road before us
And sing a chorus or two,
Come on it’s lovely weather
For a sleigh ride together with you.
It’s lovely weather
For a sleigh ride together with you.

The song has survived the generations and while the Boston Pops rendition will forever be the gold standard there are many others who have famously recorded the song, including the Carpenters for their Christmas album in the 1970s:

0 replies

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.