Cody Johnson Remembers Christmases Past With “If We Make It Through December”

Cody Johnson Remembers Christmases Past With “If We Make It Through December” | Classic Country Music | Legendary Stories and Songs Videos

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Cody Johnson may be stepping into the role of the new king of Christmas following his CMT Christmas special that aired Wednesday (December 13).

The show, titled CMT Presents: A Cody Johnson Christmas, gave viewers a glimpse into his family’s traditions and holiday memories. The television special was also jam-packed with festive performances of songs found on Johnson’s 2021 Christmas album, including a cover of Merle Haggard‘s “If We Make It Through December.”

Ahead of the performance, Cody shared why the song is special to him as it helped him and his wife through a particularly difficult Christmas.

“One year, right after we got married, we were broke. Like broke, broke. Like ramen noodles was a luxury kind of broke,” Johnson told the audience. “We went to my mom and dad’s house and I took $20, I didn’t know this at the time, but it was the last $20 for the rest of the month.”


Johnson recalled his wife, Brandi, telling him that he had just given away the last of their money.

” I didn’t realize that, so here we are. I’ve got 3/4 of a tank of gas. That’s it. That’s all we had to our name,” Cody said.

As they drove home, Merle Haggard’s “If We Make It Through December” came on the radio and the newlyweds cried as they wondered how they were, in fact, going to make it through the month. When they arrived home, Brandi unpacked leftovers Cody’s mom had sent with them, while Cody checked the mail.

In the mail were two unexpected songwriting checks from ASCAP, the first of many Cody would receive over the next several years.

“They were $2500 a piece. I walked in the house and we cried again. And then we pushed the couch up close to the tv and we heated up the leftovers and we watched It’s a Wonderful Life. And then we cried again,” Cody said. “So that is why I’m playing you this song tonight. Merle, thank you for writing this song.”

Brandi Johnson was seen in the crowd, wiping tears from her eyes as Cody recounted the story.


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Watch Cody Johnson sing Merle Haggard’s “If We Make It Through December” in the video below.

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