Over in Kentucky, local radio station WAKY played the 1940’s holiday song “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” for two hours straight on Sunday morning. From 8am to 10am the station alternated between 5 different versions of the holiday classic and played nothing else. Recently, the song has raised concerns about the importance of consent as some feel the lyrics depict a scenario where a woman is trying to get away from advances made by her date. Others feel the song was written in a different time and that the lyrics are meant to be much more playful than they may sound to a modern ear. Director of Programming for WAKY, Joe Fredele, thinks that song’s ending is evidence that both the man and woman are happy about what is transpiring.
“We’re not afraid to play it. I’m not sure why it’s controversial. We’ve played the song for years, you know, this song is older than WAKY is. It’s almost 70 years old. The song is not about that. All it is…is a dialogue between a man and a woman, and at the end of the song, you hear them harmonize together, so they’re basically agreeing.”
The Christmas classic made headlines earlier this year when a California radio station briefly pulled the song from their rotation before ultimately returning it due to an “overwhelming” amount of listeners asking for the song to be played again. Fredele has mentioned that fans have reached out on social media thanking him for playing the song.
“It’s just a fun way of saying, ‘Hey, this is our vote for that song. It’s a fun song. It’s a romantic song, don’t pick on it.”
Listen below to the original “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” sung by Esther Williams, Ricardo Montalbán, Betty Garrett and Red Skelton from the 1949 film Neptune’s Daughter to see what you think!