Category Archives: MUSIC

Most popular Christmas songs

Special to the County Compass

Decorations and shopping are integral parts of the holiday season, but very often it is the music being played over the airwaves that sets the tone for the festivities to come. Christmas music has been enjoyed for decades and certain compositions are widely loved and played year after year. The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers, who compiles lists of the most popular songs, lists “Santa Claus Is Coming to Town” and “Winter Wonderland,” both of which were written in 1934, as the oldest and most popular tunes. The newest popular song is “Wonderful Christmastime,” composed in 1979. Though personal preference often determines a holiday playlist, the following tunes are of the more popular Christmas songs:

  • “The Christmas Song (Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire)” – Mel Torme, Robert Wells
  • “Santa Claus Is Coming to Town” – Fred Coots, Haven Gillespie
  • “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” – Ralph Blane, Hugh Martin
  • “Winter Wonderland” – Felix Bernard, Richard B. Smith
  • “White Christmas” – Irving Berlin
  • “Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!” – Sammy Cahn, Jule Styne
  • “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer” – Johnny Marks
  • “Jingle Bell Rock” – Joseph Carleton Beal, James Ross Boothe
  • “I’ll Be Home for Christmas” – Walter Kent, Kim Gannon, Buck Ram
  • “Little Drummer Boy” – Katherine K. Davis, Henry V. Onorati, Harry Simeone
  • “Sleigh Ride” – Leroy Anderson, Mitchell Parish
  • “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year” – Edward Pola, George Wyle
  • “Silver Bells” – Jay Livingston, Ray Evans
  • “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree” – Johnny Marks
  • “Feliz Navidad” – Jose Feliciano
  • “Blue Christmas” – Billy Hayes, Jay W. Johnson
  • “Frosty the Snowman” – Steve Nelson, Walter E. Rollins
  • “A Holly Jolly Christmas” – Johnny Marks
  • “I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus” – Tommie Connor
  • “Here Comes Santa Claus (Right Down Santa Claus Lane)” – Gene Autry, Oakley Haldeman
  • “It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas” – Meredith Willson
  • “(There’s No Place Like) Home for the Holidays” – Bob Allen, Al Stillman
  • “Carol of the Bells” – Peter J. Wilhousky, Mykola Leontovich
  • “Santa Baby” – Joan Ellen Javits, Philip Springer, Tony Springer
  • “Wonderful Christmastime” – Paul McCartney

“White Christmas” is the most covered Christmas song of all time. There are more than 500 versions in several different languages.

Historic ballroom site of big events


The re-discovered Stanly Hall Ballroom in downtown New Bern will host a post-Valentine Day dance on Saturday, Feb. 16.

The re-discovered Stanly Hall Ballroom in downtown New Bern will host a post-Valentine Day dance on Saturday, Feb. 16.

By Jeff Aydelette | Staff Writer

NEW BERN – A successful New Year’s Eve gala at the newly renovated Stanly Ballroom on the second floor of a Pollock Street building has spurred organizers to promote an even larger attraction – the ‘Dance With Me Valentine’ event scheduled for Saturday, Feb. 16.

Several months ago, avid ballroom dancers John DeFino of Oriental, Andy Lelewer of Havelock, and Bernie Mallon of New Bern discussed where they might take their ladies for a New Year’s ballroom dance. Previously, they had gone to Florida or Virginia to find a suitable event.

As the three men pondered options, they wondered why there wasn’t something closer and quickly decided to create their own event. They discovered that the Stanly Hall historic ballroom was available on New Year’s Eve and promptly reserved the venerable location.

The three men, and their ladies, imagined a New Year’s Gala Ball reminiscent of years past. Stanly Hall, a magnificent ballroom from the 1800s was the perfect location. With its 20-foot ceilings, 10-foot crystal chandeliers, and massive 3,600 square foot. real wood floor, it was a ballroom dancer’s dream-come-true. Their goal was to create a truly elegant, semi-formal / formal, ballroom dance event.

Over the next few months, their plans came together. They created a website. They arranged special rates at local hotels. They hired a local pianist, Brandon Wade Banks, to serenade the guests as they arrived and hired local singing talent Von Lewis as a surprise guest singer.

The music for the night was designed for ballroom dancing. The ballroom was decorated to provide a special ambience. During the five hours of the Ball, the floor never wanted for dancers. Dance enthusiasts came from various parts of the state to attend and were not disappointed.
The night was certainly one to remember.

The three men have now set the bar even higher for their Feb. 16 event. Visit for complete details, and see an ad for the gala on pages 16 and 17 of this newspaper.