I had no idea that good ol’ St. Nick was such a tobacco fiend. In researching the use of Santa Claus in advertising I figured I’d be wading through Coca-Cola ads. The Coke ads seem to fit my memory of Santa from childhood (and I probably wasn’t reading any magazine other than Boy’s Life) but his hawking smokes was something of a surprise.
Good ol’ Saint Nick has been around about since about the 4th century but, the version we’ve come to know is really much more modern – like the 1820’s. There’s no doubt that he has withstood the test of time and is probably the oldest iconic figure there is. I’m just amazed that he’s survived after smoking for almost 200 years!
I’ve dug up a few songs about Santa for your enjoyment….
- “I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus” – John Mellencamp w/ daughter Teddi during a sound check.
- “Santa Claus Is Coming to Town” – Fred Astaire – a classy guy and a classy version.
- “Santa Claus, Santa Claus” – James Brown. The bluesiest Santa song I’ve ever heard.
- “Santa Baby” – Eartha Kitt. The original version later covered by Marilyn Monroe.
- “Here Comes Santa Claus” – Gene Autry. Another original version by this singing cowboy.
- “Smoke! Smoke! Smoke! (That Cigarette) – Merle Travis. Apparently Santa’s favorite song.