Every year since 1986, David Letterman has invited Darlene Love to perform on the last show of the year before Christmas. Every year, she sings “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home),” her Phil Spector-produced 1963 Christmas classic. Every year, Paul Shaffer and a sprawling cast of musicians backs her up. Next May, Letterman will retire from late-night TV, which means that when Love appears on Friday’s show to sing “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home),” it’ll be the last time singing it on Letterman’s show. Love tells The Hollywood Reporter that she won’t be singing it on anyone else’s late-night show, either; this’ll be our last chance to hear her sing it on TV. And in celebration of that great little tradition, Letterman’s people have put together a time-jumping supercut of those many performances on the show over the years. Check it out below.
Really, every late-night performance should include a sax solo with a dramatic entrance. I don’t see how that doesn’t improve every single song we’ll ever see performed on TV.