In the poignant and powerful visual, Cyrus wears a green-and-white t-shirt bearing the message "War Is Over! If You Want It.” John Lennon and Yoko Ono’s original 1972 version protested the Vietnam War. Cyrus addresses the current, turbulent political climate by changing the “for yellow ones and red ones” lyrics, singing “for left and for right.”
As in their recent SNL appearance, Ronson and Lennon flank Cyrus on either side. Ronson plays the guitar and Lennon provides backup vocals on the “war is over” refrain. The trio perform the track in an intimate studio setting with a backing band. Cyrus pours a lot of vocal power into the song’s core message, which promotes peace, kindness and tolerance.
The “Happy Xmas” music video follows a lyric video release for the track, as well as the release of the emotionally-charged music video for Cyrus and Ronson’s wistful collab single “Nothing Breaks Like a Heart.” Cyrus dropped by “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” to promote both singles, ahead of last weekend’s musical guest spot on SNL.
“Happy Xmas” has become a Christmas classic song in the five-decades-plus since its original release. Many artists have covered it, including Josh Groban, who teamed with a children’s choir for a stunning version (and video) in 2017.
Watch the entire Miley Cyrus and Mark Ronson feat. Sean Ono Lennon “Happy Xmas (War Is Over!)” above.