Friday, December 13, 2013

More Songs for the Holiday Season, Part Two

Here are ten more songs for your Christmas collection. You can hear the entire playlist here: The Ultimate-ish Christmas Playlist.

Silent Night (Tamyra Gray) – I know that I knew American Idol released a Christmas album in 2003 so I have no idea how I never knew this existed until last week. The Stevie Nicks version will always be the standard for me, but in just a few days this has become a big favorite.

Blue Christmas (Kelly Clarkson) – I never really got Elvis singing Christmas music. In fact, I'd never heard a version of this song that I liked until I heard this one. I guess it shouldn't be a shocker that Kelly could make me like it. There are 14 songs on her Wrapped in Red album and there's only one that I haven't really gotten into yet. I don't think it's the poor song's fault though; it's the song right after 4 Carats and I just keep hitting the back button so I can hear that again. Having said that, I had to take a break to do some more chair dancing to that song.

Little Altar Boy (The Carpenters) – I've never even heard another version of this song. I'm guessing there are a lot of people who think Karen Carpenter is about the only person who could sing this song and not make it either sappy or creepy. If you listen to her whole body of work, she sings so many songs that should just be ridiculous but when she sings them they aren't. She had an amazing gift for sincerity that continues to amaze me 30 years later.

Christmas Eve (Billy Eckstine) – There are a few Christmas albums that I love almost from beginning to end. Have Yourself a Jazzy Little Christmas is one of them. If I had to guess, there will only be one or two people who agree with me that this is a great Christmas song but I love it. “We'd be doing all right if we made each night more like Christmas Eve.” Indeed.

Snow Miser / Heat Miser (Dick Shawn / George S. Irving) – This is one of those songs that we all remember. But we all remember it wrong. The first line isn't “I'm Mr. Snow Miser.” It's “I'm Mr. White Christmas.” For the record, I'm extremely glad that I live under the domain of the Heat Miser.

Joy to the World (Aretha Franklin) – I don't think I really need to sell or justify this one. It's Aretha Franklin singing Joy to the World.

O Holy Night (Jennifer Hudson) – I don't own this because I can't find anywhere to download it. It's apparently from a Christmas special she did in 2009. I only heard it for the first time last night. I already am obsessed with it. If ever anyone needed to record a Christmas album (now that Kelly has finally done it), it's J-Hud. Every song would be an instant classic.

God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen (Belinda Carlisle) – Here's another one I didn't know existed until last night. For some reason it never occurred to me to google Belinda Carlisle Christmas until then. She has another song called Christmas Lullabye but I wasn't bowled over by it on first listen. I'll try again, but really she's about as synonymous with Christmas music for me as Elvis.

Christmas Time (Christina Aguilera) – I always like when I hear a pop singer sing a great Christmas song that I haven't heard before. I don't know if this is an original X-Tina Christmas song or if it's just one I'd never heard before. But as soon as I heard it, it went into regular holiday rotation. The video is extra awesome because she's wearing one of her trashy get-ups while she's singing it.

Wrapped in Red (Kelly Clarkson) – One more Kelly carol to wrap things up. Really though, just get the album. It's got at least 13 good songs on it.

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