"Mele Kalikimaka" (pronounced [ˈmɛlɛ kəˌlikiˈmɐkə]) is a Hawaiian-themed Christmas song written in 1949 by Robert Alex Anderson. The song takes its title from the Hawaiian phrase Mele Kalikimaka, meaning "Merry Christmas". One of the earliest recordings of this song was by Bing Crosby and the Andrews Sisters in 1950 on Decca 27228 (78 rpm) / 9-27228 (45 rpm) and it has been covered by many artists. The song is present in the films L.A. Confidential, Catch Me If You Can and National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation.
Origin of the phrase
The expression Mele Kalikimaka, despite its foreign sound, is actually borrowed directly from English. But since the Hawaiian language has a different phonological system from English it is not possible to render a pronunciation that is especially close to Merry Christmas. Standard Hawaiian does not have the /r/ or /s/ of English and its phonotactic constraints do not permit consonants at the end of syllables or consonant clusters. Thus the closest approximation to Merry Christmas is Mele Kalikimaka.
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- Blue Hawaiians
- Jimmy Buffett, from Christmas Island (1996)
- Jimmy Buffett and Jake Shimabukuro, from 'Tis the SeaSon (2016)
- Teresa Carpio
- Bing Crosby and The Andrews Sisters - recorded September 7, 1950 with Vic Schoen and His Orchestra.
- The Good Lovelies
- Hawaii Calls
- Nick Hexum
- Don Ho
- Chris Isaak, on Christmas (2004)
- Davy Jones
- Genoa Keawe
- Arthur Lyman
- Seth MacFarlane, from Holiday for Swing (2014)
- Dead Meadow
- Bette Midler, from Cool Yule (2006)
- Kacey Musgraves and The Quebe Sisters Band, from A Very Kacey Christmas (2016)
- Jake Owen
- Poi Dog Pondering
- Dick Powell, Richard Diamond, Private Detective; A Christmas Carol radio episode
- The Puppini Sisters, from Christmas with The Puppini Sisters
- Reel Big Fish
- She & Him
- Train, from Christmas in Tahoe (2015)
- KT Tunstall: Kazoo Solo
- Walk off the Earth
- The Lost Fingers (2016)
- Götz Alsmann (2015), translated into German 
- Elbert, S. & Pukui, M.; Hawaiian Dictionary, page 481
- Golston, Chris; Yang, Phong (2001), "White Hmong loanword phonology", in Féry, A.D. Green; van de Vijver, R., Proceedings of HILP, 5, University of Potsdam: Potsdam, pp. 40–57
- "A Bing Crosby Discography". BING magazine. International Club Crosby. Retrieved September 13, 2017.
- Alsmann, Götz. "Winterwunderwelt Vol. 2" [winter wonder world volume 2] (in German). Retrieved December 13, 2017.