Gordon Pape has compiled hundreds of fascinating facts about Christmas carols in his book Quizmas Carols: Family Trivia Fun with Classic Christmas Songs (Plume), and he says the festive factoids will surprise anyone.
For instance, the song O Little Town of Bethlehem wouldve never been written if Abraham Lincoln hadnt been assassinated.
Pape says that the songs writer, a Lincoln supporter, was so taken with the death of the president that he traveled to Bethlehem, where he was inspired to pen the holiday hymn.
And theres some more tune trivia: the popular Elvis Presley tinsel tune If Every Day Was Like Christmas was actually written by The Kings bodyguard.
But Pape isnt worried that the stories behind the songs will ruin them for carolers.
He says, I think knowing the story behind songs makes them a lot richer. It really adds to the appreciation of Christmas, even if the story is a bit weird.
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