America’s Christmas tree growers got a surprise present the first week of December. That’s when pop music super star Taylor Swift released her song, “Christmas Tree Farm.”
In it she sings about her love of a particular Christmas tree farm as an escape from the stress of city life. The first verse:
In my heart is a Christmas tree farm/Where the people would come/To dance under sparkling lights/Bundled up in their mittens and coats/And the cider would flow/And I just wanna be there tonight
How, exactly, did one of the most popular music stars on the planet come to write a song about growing Christmas trees?
“So the idea I had for the song is ‘Christmas Tree Farm,’ because I grew up on one,” she said in a video about the song. Another video that she released with the song shows home movies of her as a child playing in the snow and running among the Christmas trees at their rural Pennsylvania farm. Andrea and Scott Swift for years had a small Christmas tree farm near Reading, Pa., before they moved to the Nashville, Tenn., area to cultivate their daughter Taylor’s music career.
The song came as a total surprise to the Christmas tree industry, said Tim O’Connor, executive director of the National Christmas Tree Association, the Colorado-based organization that represents U.S. growers.
“We didn’t know it was coming,” he said, adding that “it’s a really nice thing. It’s all positive, all additive and all wonderful.”
The industry had previously known about Swift’s personal connection to Christmas trees and had tried to make contact with her through her representatives, but without any luck, O’Connor said.
“The idea that an iconic pop star grew up on a Christmas tree farm ... and celebrated it in a song” is amazing, he said.
He compared it to the industry’s biggest promotional event each year, the delivery of the White House Christmas tree to 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.
“That’s the biggest single promotional event for any commodity,” he said. It attracts scores of television and print media outlets, which cover the tree’s arrival. “Hundreds of millions of people see it all around the world.”
Yet the industry, which has taken part in the event for 54 years in a row, doesn’t pay anything to be a part of it.
“Then having a Taylor Swift come along” with millions of fans — an audience the Christmas tree industry is interested in — is a bonus, he said.
“Every other agricultural commodity would love that to happen,” O’Connor said.
“It was a gift.”
This year, for Christmas tree growers, there really is a Ms. Claus. Her first name is Taylor.