Meaning of “Baby, It’s Cold Outside”
“Baby, It’s Cold Outside” is a Christmas classic penned by American songwriter Frank Loesser. The lyrics focus entirely on a conversation being had between a man and a woman who is his romantic interest. The setting is the inside of the man’s home. For the most part, she is insisting that she has to return home. He however, is persistently trying to persuade her to stay. In fact he uses all the material possessions and cunning at his disposal. One of the main points of his argument is that she should not be hesitant to leave the house – and his company – since “it’s cold outside”.
In fact the entire second verse is based on him using a raging “blizzard” as his rationale that she should not to go. Ultimately the one thing they can agree on is that it is indeed “cold outside”.
But did the woman eventually leave the man’s home for hers?
The lyrics don’t make it clear whether the man eventually succeeded in convincing the woman to stay.
Since Loesser penned this classic in 1994, it has been covered by a wide array of singers. Some of these singers include Michael Bublé, Lady Gaga, Dolly Parton, Tom Jones and Ray Charles.
Who is Frank Loesser?
Frank Loesser was an American songwriter who lived between 1910 and 1969. Throughout his 59 years of existence on earth, he penned a number of popular Tin Pan Alley songs. “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” became his most famous composition.
Throughout his career, Loesser won a number of prestigious awards, including a Grammy and multiple Tony Awards. In 1949, “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” won him the first and only Academy Award of his life.
Facts about “Baby, It’s Cold Outside”
- Loesser wrote both the lyrics and music for “Baby, It’s Cold Outside”.
- This tune wasn’t originally written as a Christmas song. Loesser initially wrote the song to be performed by himself and his wife (Lynn Garland) to perform at parties. However, it later became associated with Christmas because of its theme that centers on winter.
- After the song gained popularity, MGM approached Loesser and offered to buy it from him. Owing to how juicy the offer was, Loesser wasted no time selling it to them. Loesser’s then wife Garland wasn’t pleased about the sale of the song. She reportedly stated she felt so betrayed by what Loesser did. She is said to have compared the betrayal to the feeling of catching him “in bed with another woman”.
- The song won an Academy Award after MGM used it in the 1949 romantic comedy film Neptune’s Daughter.
American Radio Station stops playing “Baby, It’s Cold Outside”
In 2018, a radio station (Star 102) in the United States removed this song from its holiday season playlist. Why? Because they received too many complaints from many listeners who felt it was not appropriate. These listeners wanted the song banned because they felt it wasn’t compatible with the #MeToo movement. According to them, the song’s lyrics promote harassment and violence against women. They cite the fact that in the song the man is refusing to respect the wishes of his female guest. Despite her insisting that she wants to go home, the man “forces” her to stay.
John Legend rewrites “Baby It’s Cold Outside”
In 2019 John Legend, along with American writer Natasha Rothwell, rewrote the lyrics of “Baby It’s Cold Outside” to minimize the possibility of listeners being offended by the aggressive tone of the original.