The Christmas Song

Songwriters Mel Tormé, Robert Wells
Year Written 1944
About The Christmas Song
Sometimes known by its first line ‘Chestnuts roasting on an open fire,” this song was written on a very hot summer day and Tormé and Wells were trying to think cold Christmasy thoughts in an effort to cool off. The entire song was written forty minutes and is one of America’s most classic Christmas songs. The first recording was by Nat King Cole in 1946.


Chestnuts roasting on an open fire
Jack Frost nipping at your nose
Yuletide carols being sung by a choir
And folks dressed up like Eskimos

Everybody knows a turkey and some mistletoe
Help to make the season bright
Tiny tots with their eyes all aglow
Will find it hard to sleep tonight

They know that Santas on his way
Hes loaded lots of toys and goodies on his sleigh
And every mothers child is gonna spy
To see if reindeer really know how to fly

And so, I’m offering this simple phrase
To kids from one to ninety-two
Although, its been said many times
Many ways, Merry Christmas to you

Session / Album Information


“The Christmas Song” was recorded in June 1967 and released the next year on the album Snowfall: The Tony Bennett Christmas Album. It was arranged by Robert Farnon.

This recording released on:

  • 1967: Columbia Special Products LP 12″: CSS 547 — The Great Songs Of Christmas (Album Seven)
  • 1968: Columbia LP 12″: CS 9739 — Snowfall: The Tony Bennett Christmas Album
  • 1969: CBS LP 12″: 63782 — Snowfall: The Tony Bennett Christmas Album (UK)
  • 1970: Columbia Special Products LP 12″: CSP CSS 1478 — Best of the Great Songs of Christmas
  • 1972: Columbia Special Products LP 12″: P 11406 — Tony Bennett and His Friends “Over The Holidays”
  • 1994: Columbia CD: CK 66459 — Snowfall: The Tony Bennett Christmas Album
  • 2011: Disc #37 in The Tony Bennett Complete Collection (88697874602-JK36) Snowfall: The Tony Bennett Christmas Album


“The Christmas Song” was recorded on December 21, 2000 and released the following year on Our Favorite Things. It was arranged by Jorge Calandrelli.

This recording released on:

  • 2011: Disc #66 in The Tony Bennett Complete Collection (88697874602-JK64) Our Favorite Things

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