Music in the 50's

Rudolph Goes Retro: 5 Versions of a Holiday Classic

Happy Holidays, folks! For this post I’ve decided to take one great Holiday song and showcase 5 different versions of it, with each version by a classic artist.

The song I chose is “Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer”. Why? Because it’s my Uncle Anthony’s favorite, and like many of us, he’s had a difficult year. So I thought I’d do this post as a tribute to him and his favorite Christmas Carol.

The story of Rudolph was actually created by song-writer Johnny Mark’s brother-in-law, Robert L. May, as a storybook for Montgomery Ward. Marks liked May’s story so much, he adapted it into what has become one of the most classic Christmas songs of all time.

Here now are 5 retro versions of the Holiday favorite “Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer”!

1. Gene Autry (1950 & 1957)

Gene Autry actually made TWO recordings of Rudolph’s song. The first in 1949 (which is considered the original hit) and then again in 1957.


2. Dean Martin (1959)

In 1959, Dino (that is, Dean Martin, the King of Cool) did his version of “Rudolph”, which of course, is a true Holiday treat.


3. Harry Babbitt (1950)

This version by Harry Babbitt can be found on “Vintage Christmas” which is a great compilation of Holiday songs from the 40’s and 50’s by Past Perfect Records.


4. Perry Como (1953)

Here’s a favorite of my immediate family’s. It just wouldn’t be Christmas without Perry Como!


5. Paul Anka (1961)

He went from teen heartthrob to Living Legend without missing a beat. Everyone loves Paul Anka! Here’s his upbeat, Big Band version of “Rudolph” from 1961.


Well, wasn’t that a delight! I hope you enjoyed these classic versions of a most beloved Christmas Carol. 🦌

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Rudolph artwork from clip-art library