Christmas is not a time nor a season, but a state of mind. To cherish peace and goodwill, be plenteous in mercy is to have the real spirit of Christmas. Calvin Coolidge.

Friday, 14 December 2012

The Song "Santa baby"

"Santa Baby


Is a 1953 Christmas song written by Joan Javits (the niece of Senator Jacob K. Javits) and Philip Springer. Although Tony Springer is listed as co-writer, he was a legal fiction created for purposes of membership in the performing rights organization BMI.

The song is a tongue-in-cheek look at a Christmas list sung by a woman who wants extravagant gifts such as sables, yachts, and decorations from Tiffany's. It is one of only two hit Christmas songs written by a woman. (The other one is Carol of the Drum by Katherine K. Davis, more often called The Little Drummer Boy.)

Original recording

"Santa Baby" was originally recorded by Eartha Kitt with Henri René and his orchestra in New York City on October 6, 1953. It was released by RCA Victor Records as catalog number 20-5502 (in the USA), and by EMI on the His Master's Voice label as catalog number B 10728. The song was a huge hit for Kitt, and she later said that it was one of her favorite songs to record; she reprised it in the 1954 film New Faces.

Kitt also reprised the original song in a 1963 re-recording for Kapp Records, with a more uptempo arrangement (Madonna's popular rendition for the 1987 charity album A Very Special Christmas was based on this latter version). In 1954, Kitt recorded a new version of the song with new lyrics titled "This Year's Santa Baby", to no commercial success. Writers listed did not change.

The song was featured in the 1989 film Driving Miss Daisy. The Eartha Kitt version of the song also appears on the 2010 Soundtrack for the movie "Elf."

Cover versions

"Santa Baby" has been covered in recorded and live performances by many artists throughout the years, including Maria Muldaur, Everclear, RuPaul, Kate Ceberano, Homer & Jethro, Taylor Horn, Shakira, Madonna, Jhene, Macy Gray, Natalie Merchant, Cynthia Basinet, Faith Evans, Gino Frisella, Boney James, Kylie Minogue, Girls' Generation, Ste van Holm, The Pussycat Dolls, LeAnn Rimes, Kellie Pickler, Lynn Anderson, Paloma Faith, Taylor Swift, Colbie Caillat, Chris Mitchell, The Swingle Singers and Halie Loren. It was sung in an Ally McBeal episode by the title character (Calista Flockhart). Miss Piggy sang the song in the film It's a Very Merry Muppet Christmas Movie and recorded another version for the album A Green and Red Christmas.

The song was also recently covered by Adrianna Tate-Duncan (Jessica Lowndes) on 90210 in the episode 'Holiday Madness' which aired on December 6, 2010, and by Santana Lopez (Naya Rivera) for (but ultimately cut from) the third season Christmas episode of Glee.

Mae West recorded the song in the 1960s for her album Wild Christmas. Vanessa L. Williams, Patti LaBelle, and Eartha Kitt performed the song in the 2001 animated Christmas TV special entitled Santa Baby!.
In 2004, American country singer LeAnn Rimes released the song as a bonus track on her album What a Wonderful World at US Target stores, and in the UK and Japan. Rimes released the song as a promotional single through iTunes on December 14, 2010.

The version recorded by the Pussycat Dolls entered the Top 70 Billboard charts in the Philippines, peaking at No. 21. Although it was a b-side the song picked up radio airplay in the Philippines. This version also appeared as track 1 on disc 1 of The Perfect Christmas 2006 album.

Rev Run re-recorded the song for 1997's A Very Special Christmas, Vol. 3 with different lyrics. The track also features several guest performers such as Snoop Dogg, Mase, Salt and Pepa, Onyx, Keith Murray, and Puff Daddy. Les Paul performed the song live in December 2006. Taylor Swift covered this song for her 2007 Christmas EP Sounds of the Season: The Taylor Swift Holiday Collection.

In December 2007, Kylie Minogue's version of the song reached #76 in the UK due to download sales. It was first released as a b-side to her 2000 single "Please Stay" (released in December of that year), which charted #10 in the UK. The song was also included as a b-side to her version of the Christmas classic "Let It Snow". Both were released during December 2010 on iTunes on A Kylie Christmas. On 23 December 2010, Kylie released the video for Santa Baby via YouTube. Minogue's version of the song is featured in the 2006 film The Holiday.

In 2007's This Christmas starring R&B singer Chris Brown and Lauren London, "Santa Baby" was performed by Lina in the opening credits. The song was released by UK girl group Sugababes as their 2009 Christmas promo single. The Dollyrots recorded a cover for the 2009 compilation album A Blackheart Christmas. Pink Martini feature the song on their CD Joy to the World released in November 2010.

In December 2010, "Santa Baby" was performed in a commercial for the soap opera One Life to Live. In the commercial Kristen Alderson, Kelley Missal, Brittany Underwood and Kassie DePaiva performed as their on-screen characters Starr Manning, Danielle Manning, Langston Wilde and Blair Cramer alongside Nic Robuck, Lenny Platt and David Gregory as James Ford, Nate Salinger and Robert Ford, respectively. Veteran OLTL Actor Robert S. Woods plays Santa Claus in the commercial.

Michael Bublé covered this song for his 2011 Christmas album Christmas. Some of the lyrics were changed to give a more masculine feel (such as referring to him as Santa "Buddy" instead of "Baby").


  1. Philip Springer was born in 1926 in New York City. He composed the instrumentals to Santa Baby when he was 27, and the lyrics were written by Joan Javits. The singer, Earth Kitt, was born on January 17, 1927. She was an actress and singer, and although she released many singles throughout the 40s and 50s, her most widely recognized work is in fact Santa Baby. She appeared in many shows and movies throughout her lifetime such as the Mission Impossible series, the Batman series, Uncle Toms Cabin, The Emperor’s New Groove, and recently appeared in an episode of The Simpsons. She also played in a variety of shows on Broadway and won several awards. Ironically, she died of cancer on Christmas Day last year.

    Joan Javits owned the copyright claims to the original version until 1981 when the contract expired and passed on to Philip Springer. Philip Springer sought out for a singer to do a version of the song throughout the 80s until 1987 when Madonna agreed to it. She recorded the track for a charity album entitled A Very Special Christmas which was a compilation album made to raise charity for the Special Olympics. Madonna’s version received heavy airplay and most of the profit gained was contributed by Philip Springer to the Special Olympics. While Earth Kitt’s version is still played, Madonna’s version is more popular and is widely recognized as the “definitive version”.