While many consider Mariah Carey to be the “Queen of Christmas,” Taylor Swift issued a serious challenge for the crown on Dec. 6. She kicked off “Swift-mas” by releasing “Christmas Tree Farm,” her first holiday-themed song in over a decade. For Swifties, new music is always on their Christmas lists, and Santa Taylor (Taylor Claus? Santa Swift?) came through because the new song is everything we wanted and more!
Taylor had some help when announcing her new holiday song. “I know this is pretty wild, but I’ve just written a Christmas song,” she said in an Instagram video. “I feel like it’s weird to just like wait a year to put it out. I don’t know what to do.” The Swiftmas Santa then consulted her helpers – aka the ‘itty bitty pretty kitty committee,’ aka her cats Olivia Benson, Meredith Grey, and Benjamin Button – whether or not she should release the song. After being met with ‘silence, ambivalence, and judgmental brush-offs,” Taylor decided to just go with it. “NEW XMAS SONG AND VIDEO (made from home videos) OUT TONIGHT.”
For Taylor, the song is a chance to revisit her past. Before she was one of the biggest pop stars on the planet, Taylor was a girl growing up in Pennsylvania on a Christmas-tree nursery called Pine Ridge Farm. “It was an actual Christmas tree farm,” she told Philly Mag in 2018. “We had, like, 15 acres. It was really fun as a kid. I also spent my summers at the Jersey Shore, on the bay in Stone Harbor. I walked everywhere barefoot. It was just the most amazing, magical way to grow up.”
“I grew up on a farm. It was a Christmas tree farm, though, so that’s why I’m sort of obsessed with Christmas,” she said to BGM in 2018, while explaining her love of the holiday. “Yeah, I really love Christmas. I wish it was all year round, just like for the feeling that everybody has. Everybody’s buying gifts for each other, and there’s sort of a feeling about it. But, I think that the fact that I love it so much is probably because I grew up on a Christmas tree farm.”
“Christmas Tree Farm” is Taylor’s first holiday release since 2007’s The Taylor Swift Holiday Collection. (Though, some die-hard fans have argued that Lover’s title track qualifies for the line, “Can we leave the Christmas lights up ‘till January?”) The EP features covers of Christmas classics like “Last Christmas,” and “Santa Baby,” while offering two originals: “Christmases When You Were Mine,” and “Christmas Must Be Something More.” The EP was a commercial success, hitting No. 20 on the Billboard 200 while topping the Holiday Albums chart.