Chuck Berry – Run Rudolph Run

Nice little Christmas song by Chuck Berry… the father of Rock and Roll.  The song has a “Carol” vibe to it and that is never a bad thing.  It was one of the first rock and roll Christmas songs and it was released in 1958.

Berry based this song on “Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer,” giving Rudolph a bit of an attitude as he delivers the toys. The song is credited to Johnny Marks and Marvin Brodie. Johnny Marks wrote Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer.  Chuck puts his stamp on this song. 

The song is sometimes known as “Run Run Rudolph,” which is how it appears on some other covers. Other artists to record the song include Sheryl Crow, Bryan Adams, The Grateful Dead, Jimmy Buffett, Dwight Yoakam, Bon Jovi, and Keith Richards.

The song peaked at #69 in the Billboard 100 in 1958 and has re-charted many times through the years…it peaked at #36 in the Billboard 100 in January of 2020…and I’m sure it is charting now.

The song appeared in a lot of films including Home Alone, Diner, The Santa Clause 2, Cast Away, and Jingle All the Way.

Run Rudolph Run

Out of all the reindeers you know you’re the mastermind
Run, run Rudolph, Randalph ain’t too far behind
Run, run Rudolph, Santa’s got to make it to town
Santa make him hurry, tell him he can take the freeway down
Run, run Rudolph ’cause I’m reelin’ like a merry-go-round

Said Santa to a boy child what have you been longing for?
All I want for Christmas is a rock and roll electric guitar
And then away went Rudolph a whizzing like a shooting star
Run, run Rudolph, Santa’s got to make it to town
Santa make him hurry, tell him he can take the freeway down
Run, run Rudolph, reeling like a merry-go-round

Run, run Rudolph, Santa’s got to make it to town
Santa make him hurry, tell him he can take the freeway down
Run, run Rudolph, reeling like a merry-go-round

Said Santa to a girl child what would please you most to get?
A little baby doll that can cry, sleep, drink and wet
And then away went Rudolph a whizzing like a Saber jet
Run, run Rudolph, Santa’s got to make it to town
Santa make him hurry, tell him he can take the freeway down
Run, run Rudolph ’cause I’m reelin’ like a merry-go-round

Author: Badfinger (Max)

Power Pop fan, Baseball fan, old movie and tv show fan... and a songwriter, bass and guitar player.

20 thoughts on “Chuck Berry – Run Rudolph Run”

  1. I wish they still sold Billboard at newsstands. I’d love to see the full Holiday chart & some of the ‘recurrent’ type ones but most are restricted to ‘pro subscribers ‘ online.
    He was obviously onto a good thing, mixing rock & Christmas

    Liked by 4 people

      1. Chuck Berry had to give a co-writing credit to Marks since the character of Rudolph is copyrighted. This is a 12-bar blues tune, that is very similar to Berry’s song ‘Johnny B. Goode’, and it is melodically identical to his song ‘Little Queenie’.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Yes there was an copyright issue but believe that Chuck had to give up his credit entirely. The first press of the 45 had Chuck as co writer with fictitious name until Marks had him removed and his own name added. Perhaps you may know but I haven’t read anywhere that Berry fought to hard on this, Marks being the juggernaut he was it was likely a losing battle.

        Liked by 2 people

      3. I look at the song and the story as being two separate things and I feel like Chuck got ripped off having to give the rights away for this song. I don’t think that you can copywrite Santa and I see Rudolph as being almost the same thing. Chuck’s song is not similar at all to Marks’ story, but he wanted his money and Chuck caved.

        Liked by 2 people

      4. I agree totally but that’s the power of copyright law. Publishers make so much money on stealing songs . It should not be legal. At least we can all sing Happy Birthday without paying royalties now!

        Liked by 2 people

    1. That is so true…if anything he could have sued others. He has to be one of the most copied people ever…sometimes they did get tagged like The Beach Boys Surfin’ USA

      Like

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