If there is one thing that most of us appreciate about Christmas, it’s the music that plays from November into January. Some of those songs have been around for hundreds of years, while others are relative newcomers. These include a catchy tune that was composed five decades ago by José Feliciano, “Feliz Navidad”.
Although many Christmas songs will tell quite a story through their lyrics, that isn’t the case with “Feliz Navidad”.
In fact, it may be the simplistic nature of the song that made it so popular. There are only two phrases that are constantly repeated through the song, one in Spanish and the other in English.
Just sitting here thinking about how awesome the song Feliz Navidad is. José Feliciano really showed out with that one. So simple! So perfect!
— Jason Isbell (@JasonIsbell) December 21, 2020
It’s hard to believe that the Christmas song has been around for 50 years, and it is just as popular today as it was the year it first was played on the radio.
In order to celebrate the passing of five decades, Feliciano is putting out a new recording of the song, along with a live-streamed concert on December 20 and a new children’s book. The Puerto Rican singer is not singing on his own in the new song, he is doing so along with 30 of his pals.
— Becky S. Wilson (@WDSPRMaven) December 21, 2020
One of the other singers, La India, says it was an honor to sing for him. She speaks about his ability to improvise and how he didn’t abandon his Latin roots, even when he wrote a song that was extremely popular in the United States.
They decided to mix things up a little for the new version, performing it bilingually. They also used the guitar and a 10 stringed instrument, known as the cuatro.
— NBC Chicago (@nbcchicago) December 19, 2020
Carlos Santana also spoke about the song in a documentary, Jose Feliciano: Behind This Guitar.
He said that the time when the song was written was a different time in America. There was a lot of ignorance when it came to culture. These days, everybody is singing it!