Apart from his singing cowboy career, this Yuletide champion also introduced Here Comes Santa Claus ('47) and Frosty The Snowman ('50). With over 8 million sold, Rudolph became his biggest hit, the pre 1955 best selling record after Bing Crosby's White Christmas.
Homer & Jethro [as Rudolph The Flat-nosed Reindeer]
Crystals [on Phil Spector's Christmas album]
Paul McCartney & Wings [as The Red Nosed Reggae]
Ronald Snijders [as Kerstfeest In Suriname]
Originally Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer was a Christmas carol written in 1939 by songwriter Johnny Marks' brother-in-law Robert May for the Montgomery Ward department stores in Chicago to be distributed among children during holiday season. By the end of '46 up to 6 million copies of said story had been given away. Only then came the idea to turn it into a song. One of the reindeers at the Chicago zoo was named Rudolph and believe it or not, due to a wart on its snout, it was red-nosed in wintertime. The animal suffered but all the children loved it. Berlin polar bear Knut's popularity had nothing on him. However, it hasn't been cleared, not even in Chicago, whether Rudolph was named after the carol/song-character or vice versa. Fact is Denver Gillon, the illustrator of said original booklet, went to the local Lincoln Park Zoo to make some sketches of reindeers for inspiration, which makes there is a link for sure.