Musings: My Favorite “Santa” Story

Photo credit: Las Vegas Weekly’s article “The Ballad of Ryan Pardey.”

I love a good story, whether it’s via book or song. And this week, I’m taking a look at some of my favorite Christmas tunes. Not the hymns. Not the cloying pop ditties you hear every year. But the Christmas songs by one of my favorite bands, The Killers. Yes, The Killers. Since 2006, they have released a Christmas single to support the (RED) campaign. The Killers have raised over $850,000 for (RED) through a decade’s worth of fun, kitschy, and yet sentimental Christmas songs.

In that said decade’s worth of songs, Brandon Flowers and co. have created a Santa of their very own: a Santa, as performed by their former tour manager Ryan Pardey, who is conniving, murderous, and downright insane, and as introduced in the 2006 song and video “Don’t Shoot Me Santa.” He’s no Krampus, but Ryan Pardey’s Santa is pretty darn close. This Santa who takes the naughty part quite seriously. I mean, this is the guy who can see you when you’re sleeping, knows when you’re awake…. that person has got to be up to no good! and the music video for “I Feel It in My Bones” definitely shows that dark side of Santa. And while Santa is no saint in any of The Killers’ holiday songs, but ultimately, has a change of heart in the final song of the Santa trilogy, “Dirt Sledding.” It’s very sweet, with Brandon Flowers’ now-familiar themes of redemption and making up for lost time that so often appear in his lyrics.

So how do you meet this version of Santa? Watch the videos for “Don’t Shoot Me Santa,” “I Feel It in My Bones,” and “Dirt Sledding.”

Later this week, see how the rest of The Killers’ Christmas songs fare in Ranked, in which I compare by favorites.

In bookish-related notes, however, here are a few random comments:



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