Gene Autry wrote and recorded "Here Comes Santa Claus (Right Down Santa Claus Lane)" in 1947. The story goes that he was at a Christmas parade where he heard some children repeating, "Here comes Santa Claus! Here comes Santa Claus!" over and over. Autry was inspired by the joyful anticipation behind the words to jot down the first draft of a song. He brought his notes to Oakley Haldeman, then head of his music publishing company, and they completed the song together -- little suspecting that it would become a Christmas classic.
"Here Comes Santa Claus" was Gene Autry's first holiday recording and an immediate hit. Over the past half century the song's popularity has continued to grow, and in 1998 It was voted one of the top holiday songs of the twentieth century by The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP).
Now artist Bruce Whatley has been inspired to illustrate this favorite song as a picture book with the richly textured artwork that made his The Night Before Christmas a best-seller. Expanding on the song's themes of hope and goodwill, Whatley has created a curious North Pole puppy who stows away on Santa's sleigh for an unforgettable Christmas Eve adventure.
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