Christmas songs and holiday albums aren’t necessarily the most thrilling releases, with a few legendary exceptions – but Carly Rae Jepsen‘s managed to make an amusing, deeply relatable contribution to the overstuffed genre.

The 34-year-old “Run Away With Me” Canadian pop superhero returned on Friday (October 30), just before Halloween, to provide “It’s Not Christmas Till Somebody Cries,” a silly, self-explanatory anthem for the inherent discomfort in forced extended family holiday interactions – from ideologically, um, opposed uncles to your vegan boyfriend getting fed fish – and the general stress and anxiety that comes with intermingling during the holiday season.

The song was created with E•MO•TION collaborators Benjamin Romans and CJ Baran and Dedicated collaborator / boyfriend James Flannigan.

Ever the cheery optimist, CRJ knows that the holidays are bound to go awry – so just put it down to tradition and brace for impact.

“I love the old fashioned movies and the family traditions and the excitement of gifting presents and decorating the tree and and, and…my list is endless. But each year the pressure to have the perfect Christmas always ends in tears. I call it Christmas versus expectation,” Carly says.

“Christmas holiday is my favorite time of year. I love it. But so often emotions run high and expectation versus reality is something I’d like to shed some light on and hopefully some laughs too in the process. So if you are lucky enough to get to be with the ones that matter most to you this year- embrace it! And if things go south just remember, ‘the secret is to sing a little song to survive… that it’s not Christmas till somebody cries!'”

The song has all the signature markings of a Christmas song with its sleigh bells and twinkling lights, supplying all the campy glee of an ugly Christmas sweater, but it still keeps in the general spirit of CRJ’s nostalgic brand of swoon-y electro-pop.

From Grandpa accidentally getting high on gummy edibles to arguing with her uncle about politics, it’s all one charming, relatable mess: “I used to hide in my room, but now I like it, ’cause it’s not Christmas till somebody cries.”

2020’s already been rough enough for all of us. Go ahead and bring it on, Santa.

Dedicated: Side B is currently available on vinyl, and as an exclusive cassette.

This song is featured on the MuuTunes Spotify playlist.

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Photo credit: Nick Theodorakis