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Lyrics Don’t Lie… or do they?

Historical Lyrics to “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas”

Have yourself a merry little Christmas
It may be your last
Next year we may all be living in the past

Have yourself a merry little Christmas
Make the yuletide gay
Next year all our troubles will be miles away

Once again as in olden days
Happy golden days of yore
Faithful friends who are dear to us
Will be near to us no more

Through the years, we all will be together
If the fates allow
Until then, we’ll have to muddle through somehow
So have yourself a merry little Christmas now.

Composed by Hugh Martin and Ralph Blane
Courtesy of MGM Music

Sound a little odd? It should. Chances are you’ve never heard this version because of Judy Garland and Frank Sinatra. Sinatra wanted it “jollied up” for his A Jolly Christmas album (in 1957). So, Martin changed a few lines. “Until then, we’ll have to muddle through somehow” became “Hang a shining star upon the highest bough.” It had been changed before that by Judy Garland for the movie Meet Me in St. Louis in 1944. She felt that a few of the lines were simply too depressing. Frank Sinatra obviously felt those changes still didn’t make it jolly enough.

After our plans changed for Christmas and we would no longer be able to see those friends who are dear to us… this version of the song seemed fitting. Originally brought to my attention by my friend, Landon, it seemed right that I should share it with others who might be far from those who are dear to them. Here is Judy Garland siging her version:

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