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Cooking Up Holiday Songs From Scratch

It's the time of year when holiday music is everywhere: your car radio, the mall, maybe your office, almost certainly your office elevator. Depending on your taste, that music is either joyous or earsplitting; for every "Baby, It's Cold Outside" there's a "Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer." So trying to come up with a new holiday tune is no easy feat — but the group Office Romance is giving it a try.

Office Romance is a partnership between Syd Butler and Seth Jabour, members of the band Les Savy Fav, and Butler's wife, actress Amy Carlson of the CBS show Blue Bloods. Their new EP, I Love the Holidays, features three original holiday tunes.

"There are certain things you have to put in a song. You have to put in a glockenspiel and sleigh bells and certain things that make it sound holiday-ish," Butler tells NPR's Rachel Martin. "We tried to make something fresh and new, but we also had to respect the history of the holiday song."

"We started to connect to the holiday songs that we've loved forever in a different way because it's such a challenge to be so succinct and connect to so many people," Carlson adds. "I think that by creating our own, we realized that it's much more challenging than you think to write lyrics that speak to everyone."

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