Rock & Roll and Country Music Hall of Famer Brenda Lee is celebrating her signature song, “Rockin’ Around The Christmas Tree,” on the 65th anniversary of the holiday classic with a new music video, which features cameos by country stars Tanya Tucker and Trisha Yearwood.
The official music video, which was shot in Nashville a few weeks ago, premiered Friday on CMT.
Brenda says she asked songwriter Johnny Marks how he came up with the idea of the song, and it was just by watching pine trees sway in the wind on a beach in New York.
“It was written by a gentleman who has written just about every Christmas standard,” she says. “His name is Johnny Marks, and I asked him one time, I said, ‘How in the world did you write ‘Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree?’ And he said, ‘Well, I was laying on the beach (in New York) and I went to sleep,’ and he said, ‘I woke up and the pine trees were kind of swaying in the breeze.’ And he said, ‘All of a sudden, I thought about Christmas, and I watched them begin and they were kind of rockin’ and I thought about rockin.’ ’ And he said, ‘I just thought about a rockin’ Christmas, and then I changed it to where people might want to rock around the Christmas tree.’ And that’s kind of how it was born, and I’m lucky, so lucky that I was able to get that song.”
When asked what it feels like to have one of the biggest holiday songs ever recorded, Lee says, “I don’t know how to answer the question of what’s it like to have one of the biggest holiday songs ever. I’ll tell you what it’s like. It’s a feeling that’s indescribable. It’s a thankful feeling to the writers, to the musicians, to the producers and, most of all, to the audience that went out and bought that song and still go out and buy that song, and you all have made it what it is. I sang it, but I had to have you to help me make it what it become, so I thank you from the bottom of my heart.”