Xmas songs no. 12: Blink-182 – “I Won’t Be Home for Christmas”

JosieI’m going local for the next few days, with holiday songs from San Diego-area groups. This one by Blink-182 gained some traction after they’d become really famous, but it first showed up back in ’97 as a promo song they gave out to radio stations. I remember hearing it on 91X back then; it was the year Dude Ranch came out and “Dammit” was getting airplay, so they played this crude Christmas tune by the guys. I think it was one of the last songs they recorded with original drummer Scott Raynor, who was sacked in the spring of ’98.

By the time “I Won’t Be Home for Christmas” got an actual release on the “Josie” single that November, Travis Barker of The Aquabats had joined the band and appeared with them in the liner photos. My brother picked up the CD single and “I Won’t Be Home for Christmas” has been in my holiday rotation ever since. The single was pretty limited, as CD singles often were, so the song remained a bit obscure until Blink-182 became megastars and re-released it for the 2002 holiday season. It’s shown up in various places since, and it seems that every holiday season I wind up having a conversation with someone who got into Blink-182 in the early 2000s and they ask “did you know they have a Christmas song?” and I say “yeah, I got it in 1998.” I still have the CD single.

Outside the carolers start to sing
I can’t describe the joy they bring
‘Cause joy is something they don’t bring me
My girlfriend is by my side
From the roof are hanging sickles of ice
Their whiny voices get irritating

It’s Christmastime again

So I stand with a dead smile on my face
Wondering how much of my time they’ll waste
Oh god I hate these Satan’s helpers
And then I guess I must have snapped
Because I grabbed a baseball bat
And made them all run for shelter

It’s Christmastime again
It’s time to be nice to the people you can’t stand all year
I’m growing tired of all this Christmas cheer
You people scare me
Please stay away from my home
If you don’t wanna get beat down
Just leave the presents and then leave me alone

Well I guess it’s not cool to freak on Christmas Eve
‘Cause the cops came and arrested me
They had an unfair advantage
And even though the jail didn’t have a tree
Christmas came a night early
‘Cause a guy named Bubba unwrapped my package

I won’t be home
I won’t be home for Christmas
Please post my bail

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