Chipmunks Christmas Song
For over fifty years, children and adults alike have been celebrating the holidays with a sassy trio of chipmunks, singing along to the catchy lyrics of their namesake Christmas song. Indeed, what would Christmas be without the cheerful chirping of Alvin, Simon, and Theodore?
Named after the president, chief engineer, and founder of Liberty Records, the furry little characters are the members of a “band”, called Alvin And The Chipmunks, while a “man” named David Seville functions as their human manager, catapulting them to super stardom.
The Chipmunks were the brainchild of Ross Bagdasarian (1919 to 1972), who worked as a songwriter under the pseudonym of David Seville – hence the name of The Chipmunk's fictitious manager. Before Bagdasarian found his fame and fortune with The Chipmunks, he co-wrote songs for Rosemary Clooney. Eventually, he started to experiment with voice distortions, and The Chipmunks were born. Bagdasarian, who is the voice behind the original Chipmunks as well as their human manager, used simple techniques such as speeding up and slowing down his voice to achieve the cute high pitched sound of the little animal's voices. It's interesting to note that both Bagdasarian (an ethnic Armenian) and Irving Berlin (the creator of White Christmas) were either immigrants or had immigrant families, but ended up writing two of the most popular Christmas songs around!
The Chipmunk Song (also called Christmas Don't Be Late) made its debut on Christmas 1958 and immediately became a smash hit, dominating the billboard charts for weeks on end, and earning them three Grammy Awards. A few years later, The Chipmunks landed their own television show as cartoon characters, but it did not command the same success their music career. After Bagdasarian passed away unexpectedly in 1972, his son and daughter-in-law took over the voices of The Chipmunks. It took almost ten years, however before The Chipmunks made it back on the TV screen, but this time they made it big when in 1981 their Christmas special entitled “A Chipmunk Christmas” went on air. From then on, the little fellows featured successfully in numerous TV series and movies.
Since 1958, the “band” has issued numerous chart topping records and singles, including many featuring Christmas songs, forever establishing their music in the hearts of children everywhere.