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Nat King Cole's 'The Christmas Song'

ED GORDON, host:

All week, NEW & NOTES has closed the program with our favorite holiday songs. Today we end our show and the week with--What else?--the gold standard and Mr. Nat King Cole.

(Soundbite of music)

Mr. NAT KING COLE: (Singing) 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.

GORDON: The song was written ironically on a hot summer day by pop and jazz singing legend Mel Torme. Today, the Christmas song is a holiday standard with over 1,500 renditions since it was first recorded, but none of them quite reach the master's version.

(Soundbite of music)

Mr. COLE: (Singing) Tiny tots with their eyes all aglow will find it hard to sleep tonight.

GORDON: We'd also like to thank WDET in Detroit for accommodating us this week and take an opportunity to welcome their listeners and the listeners of WYPR in Baltimore, Maryland. Glad to have you on board.

(Soundbite of music)

Mr. COLE: (Singing) ...on his sleigh.

GORDON: That's our program for today. NEWS & NOTES was created by NPR News and the African-American Public Radio Consortium. I'm Ed Gordon. From the NEWS & NOTES family, happy holidays. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.