In December 2012, when Jimmy Fallon was still host of Late Night, Mariah Carey stopped by to perform her holiday classic “All I Want for Christmas Is You” with the Roots playing classroom instruments. Fallon has kept that tradition alive even as he moved on to The Tonight Show by inviting One Direction – fresh off their third Saturday Night Live visit in three years – to perform the Xmas favorite “Santa Claus Is Coming to Town.”
With everyone wearing their most vibrant holiday sweaters, Fallon, the Roots and One Direction break out instruments like children’s xylophones, coconut shells and toy drums to perform the oft-covered Christmas classic. (Zayn Malik’s work on the triangle is especially spirited.) At one point, Niall Horan forgets to play his tiny shaker entirely before Fallon reminds him to pick it back up.
One Direction’s unusually exorbitant amount of time at the NBC studios is tied to the group’s hour-long One Direction: The TV Special airing Tuesday night. The program will feature behind-the-scenes footage of 1D during the South American leg of their Where We Are tour, with the band also recording their new LP Four while on the road. The special will also feature a special concert the quintet performed for lucky fans at the Universal Orlando Resort.
After the special, One Direction will be back on The Tonight Show as guests alongside Jerry Seinfeld and Big Sean.