Singer Darlene Love sang "Christmas (Baby Please Come Home" for David Letterman one last time Friday night, which she's sung on Letterman's late night shows dating back to when he was on NBC in 1986. Here's her final Letterman performance of the song at the Ed Sullivan Theater, in one of the most epic versions of it ever with strings and falling snow:
Showing the depth of her history on the Letterman show, "Late Show" released a supercut of Darlene Love earlier in the week delivering the Christmas classic over the years:
Love has vowed to retire the song from the talk show circuit, though she also has wanted it to be clear that she's happy to sing it in other settings in the years to come.
Love originally recorded the song on the legendary 1963 Christmas album "A Christmas Gift For you From Phil Spector." She was in her early 20s at the time, and now over 50 years later, she's still singing that song.
While she sang it on that Christmas album, she actually wasn't hugely attached to the song until she was asked to sing it for Letterman back in the '80s, she said in an interview on the show. Letterman came to see her in a performance and said that was the best Christmas song he'd ever heard.
"I can't speak for others, but for me, it's become very meaningful," Letterman said on his show Friday. Watch more of Letterman's interview with Love:
It's one of the only meaningful things about Christmas for Letterman, according to his band leader who always plays the song with Love, Paul Shaffer.
"One thing about Mr. Letterman — he hates Christmas and holiday novelty songs," Shaffer told the New York Times. However, he says Letterman made an exception for this one song "because of Darlene's soul."
Love told the Times after taping the performance that there was a key reason she decided to get on top of the piano at the end of the performance: To avoid being hugged by Letterman, which she was sure would make her cry.