The wholesome humor of this seasonal favorite—in which a young boy spies his mother smooching his costumed father—was too much for the archdiocese of Boston: it condemned the song for debasing the holiday.
Jimmy Boyd had achieved some celebrity as a child star when he recorded the song in 1952. (Like Brenda Lee, he was 13 years-old when he stepped into the studio; unlike Lee, he sounds very much his age.) A few church leaders in Boston objected to the song’s suggestion of physical intimacy and tried to have it banned. The actions made headlines across the country.
Boyd’s record label flew their young star to Boston, where he meet with church leaders and explained how maybe the song really wasn’t so evil. The archdiocese lifted the ban, and more headlines were made—great publicity for a song that had already sold an astonishing 2 million copies in its first week of release.
Next “Auld Lang Syne”