It’s late August. The high today is 91 degrees. I’m already sweating, which can only mean one thing: it’s time to start thinking about Christmas.
If you consider the chaos of this year, the holidays could be thought of as right around the corner, and so Carrie Underwood has announced her first-ever Christmas record in the dead of summer. It’s titled My Gift, and it’s out September 25. That’s impressively early for even the thirstiest musicians: Gwen Stefani and John Legend waited until October to release their financially lucrative-and-possibly pander-y holiday albums in previous years. (Let the record show that 98 Degrees announced their Christmas record in May, but recently reunited boy bands are on no one’s schedule but their own.) Leave it to Underwood to continue the brave, if not premature, tradition.
To fully get her Underwoodies (I assume that is the fandom name) in the mood, Carrie shared a two-minute teaser trailer of her socially-distanced time spent recording the album, partially over Zoom. She also says something about loving “Little Drummer Boy,” because “the sentiment behind it is just so honest. There’s a little boy—of course, I think of my 5-year old [son], Isaiah. They’re bringing gifts to baby Jesus. He doesn’t have anything. He’s poor. So he says, ‘I know. I’m going to play my drum for him. That’s what I have,’” she says directly to the camera, as if to connect the story with her love of music and her audience. (According to my favorite blog, CelebrityNetWorth.com, Underwood is worth $140 million. So, you know, extremely relatable!)
Other songs on My Gift include “Joyful, Joyful, We Adore Thee,” “O Come All Ye Faithful,” “Let There Be Peace,” “Sweet Baby Jesus,” “Hallelujah,” featuring John Legend, because no one loves Christmas more than that guy, “O Holy Night,” “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas,” and “Silent Night.”
I’m sure her renditions will be fine, especially since she’s avoided the seductive trappings of writing a Christmas original. As my colleague Clover Hope has written before, going that route is not “‘good,’ per se,” but it is “Christmas.”
Until the album drops, join me in the fruitless pursuit of trying to uncover who bought the car seat from Underwood’s “Before He Cheats” music video for a cool $12,000—the very same found in “his pretty little souped-up four-wheel drive” that she “carved” her “name” into. I simply must know.