As the daughter of a minister, Darlene Love grew up surrounded by gospel music and when she was 10, she joined the church’s choir. The choir director noticed she had an amazing voice and had her do some recordings and broadcasts. That’s when Darlene knew she wanted a career in music. Still just a teenager, she was recruited to a girl group called The Blossoms and by the time she was in her early 20s, she’d launched a career as a professional vocalist. She worked with some huge names, including Sam Cooke, Elvis Presley, Dionne Warwick, The Beach Boys, Sonny and Cher, and Tom Jones. Darlene has also done some acting, notably in the “Lethal Weapon” series and the Broadway production of “Hairspray.”
In 1963, Darlene Love recorded her version of “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home).” Years later, when Rolling Stone named it the number one rock Christmas song ever, they correctly pointed out that “nobody can match Love’s emotion and sheer vocal power.”
David Letterman was a titan of late night television for 33 years, hosting “Late Night With David Letterman” on NBC from 1982 until 1993 and “The Late Show With David Letterman” on CBS from 1993 to 2015. He got his start in television in 1976 as a goofy weatherman on a local station in Indiana. His on-air antics were hilarious and unpredictable: he congratulated a tropical storm on being upgraded to a hurricane, predicted hail the size of canned hams, reported the weather in fictitious cities, and much more. Once he had his late night show, Letterman’s offbeat sense of humor made for great skits, celebrity interviews, and the show’s famous top ten lists.
One other feature of Letterman’s shows was music. In 1986, Darlene Love was invited to sing “Christmas (Baby Please Come home)” for the show that was airing just before Christmas. Nobody could have guessed that this would become an annual tradition.
Check out the video mashup of Darlene Love’s Christmas appearances on Letterman and let us know what you thought in the comments at Facebook. Don’t forget to like and share!