Christmas: a time of giving, loving and – of course – the coveted Christmas Number 1. Over six decades we’ve seen everything from Bohemian Rhapsody to Band Aid, Mary’s Boy Child to the Spice Girls (even Bob the Builder made it to the top once); and now, for the second year in a row, a chart-topping song about sausage rolls.
If you haven’t yet heard about LadBaby’s I Love Sausage Rolls – a playful remake of Joan Jett’s I Love Rock ‘n’ Roll – allow me to explain: YouTube star and dad blogger Mark Hoyle, alongside his wife Roxanne and their two sons Phoenix and Coby, released their second consecutive pastry-inspired karaoke number this Christmas – and it soared way beyond Stormzy, Lewis Capaldi and even Wham’s festive classic Last Christmas to take the title last week.
Last year, their hit We Built This City On Sausage Rolls, LadBaby’s version of Starship’s We Built This City, helped the family provide 70,000 three-day emergency food parcels through the Trussell Trust, a charity supporting more than 1,200 food banks across the UK. And this year is no different, with LadBaby once again donating 100 per cent of the song proceeds to charity, vowing to help the 4.1 million children living below the poverty line across the UK.
While music connoisseurs may have been far from happy with the choice (and I can partly see why – the vocals are not exactly to Mariah Carey’s standard), I believe the track proves that Christmas is still the global season of giving, and that even in the current state of the world – where it can often be everyone for themselves – we haven’t forgotten that we must share the celebration of Christmas with those who are struggling and in darkness.
Of course, this song is about a meat-filled snack and not about Jesus (and I’m pretty certain there’s no Biblical references to sausage rolls), but I believe it encapsulates a lot of what Christmas is about: not just giving, but joy and family, love and peace, goodwill to all men, bringing everyone together no matter their status or origin – working towards a better world.
Having LadBaby soar to the top of the charts, and not because of moving vocals or a multi-million pound media campaign but because of the public’s desire to help others, proves the loving message of Christmas is still at the centre of all the overly-commercialised Santa-talk. That ultimately, Christmas is about what God gave us and the hope that it brings; that He, on that night in Bethlehem, brought a Saviour into the world in a dark, damp stable to two young, refugee parents with nothing, miles away from home. To me, at least, it therefore makes sense that LadBaby wants to share some of that hope with families living in a similarly harsh and tricky reality.
While it may not be a good idea to sit down with your youth group and digest the song – in case you haven’t yet understood, it really is just about sausage rolls and it may be a stretch to compare it to Biblical teaching – but it’s worth thinking with them about what it says about the true meaning of Christmas, and what we can all be doing to promote that message, to talk about how we can reach those in need, but in a way full of joy and light (and maybe slightly less beige).