Merry Christmas! I believe in Father Christmas – Greg Lake – Ian Anderson
We want to wish all of you a happy holiday season! Be good to each other! Check out this beautiful live performance by Greg Lake (Emerson, Lake and Palmer) and Ian Anderson (Jethro Tull). filmed live at St. Bride’s Church, Fleet Street, in the City of London with Jethro Tull’ s Ian Anderson on flute, David Arch on keyboards, Florian Opahle on acoustic guitar and the church choir.
Although it is often categorised as a Christmas song, this was not Lake’s intention. Lake claims to have written the song in protest at the commercialisation of Christmas. Sinfield, however, claims that the words are about a loss of innocence and childhood belief.
The song is often misinterpreted as an anti-religious song and, because of this, Lake was surprised at its success. As he stated in a Mojo magazine interview:
“I find it appalling when people say it’s politically incorrect to talk about Christmas, you’ve got to talk about ‘The Holiday Season’. Christmas was a time of family warmth and love. There was a feeling of forgiveness, acceptance. And I do believe in Father Christmas.”
The instrumental riff between verses comes from the “Troika” portion of Sergei Prokofiev’s Lieutenant Kijé Suite written for a 1934 Soviet film, Lieutenant Kijé, added at Keith Emerson’s suggestion.
When it got to No 1 before we’d even brought ours out, I thought it would be long gone by Christmas. How wrong can you get?” The song was released again in 1984 and 1986 making 84 and 98 respectively in the UK Singles Chart.