With lyrics based on John Lennon and Yoko Ono’s 1969 billboard campaign which displayed the words "WAR IS OVER! (If You Want It) Happy Christmas from John and Yoko" in cities deeply entrenched in the Vietnam War, it’s perhaps surprising that the song’s original release failed to chart in the US.
Fact: The song’s whispered beginning is a greeting to the couple’s children - Yoko says “Happy Christmas, Kyoko" and John says “Happy Christmas, Julian” - not, contrary to popular belief (and incorrectly included in the lyric sheet from 1982’s The John Lennon Collection!), “Happy Christmas, Yoko. Happy Christmas, John”.
“Not only is Happy Xmas (War Is Over) a great Christmas song but it also has a lot of meaning to it. Many Xmas songs are just made to get a quick buck but you really felt that the two messages Lennon was giving came straight from the heart.” (Thanks, IWannaBeAdored)
“Difficult one again. Slade's Merry Xmas Everybody, Wizard's I wish It Could Be Xmas Everyday, Nat King Cole Merry Xmas To You, John Lennon Happy Xmas (War Is Over), Greg Lake’s I Believe In Father Christmas, the ubiquitous Band Aid…” (Thanks, bbcoz)
“The best Christmas songs ever are... Happy Xmas (War Is Over) - John & Yoko Fairytale Of New York – The Pogues Little Saint Nick - Beach Boys.” (Thanks, yossarianlives)
“Lennon's Happy Xmas (War Is Over), it doesn’t matter when or where, you listen to this song and the Christmas spirit just takes you entirely.” (Thanks, pleskoch)
“Happy Xmas (War Is Over) - John & Yoko. No contest.” (Thanks, macguffin)