Whew, what a long spell without blogging! I’ll admit that I was surprised how events happening earlier this month on 11/9/16 scrambled my brain a bit and threw me off my blogging path! Though I’d love to blame it on the election chaos, the truth lies in the fact that holiday music started playing around the clock on one of my favorite stations that same day – weeks before Thanksgiving!! Now don’t get me wrong, music single-handedly gets me in the holiday mood faster than ugly sweaters and outlandish Christmas lights! Just call me old fashioned (or call me scarred from when I used to work in music and would hear holiday music heralding the halls in July) but I can’t listen to Christmas music before Thanksgiving is done.
Now that you know my quirks, here are my traditions. We always buy one new Christmas album every year. Below I’ll share with you our all time-favorites, and the highest contenders for this year.
Nobody keeps you warmer on these cold winter nights. He’ll wrap you in his voice and sing to you as if you were cuddling by a fire. It has my all-time favorite song “Blue Christmas” and even has a holiday message from the King himself.
Runner up: BING CROSBY – White Christmas
THE BIG 80’s
From Billy Squier to Hall & Oats, Pat Benatar, Queen, The Pretenders, The Smithereens and The Ramones – to name a few – my childhood favorites come together to perform the ultimate holiday concert! It features the funtastic “Christmas Wrapping” song about the girl and the guy trying to hook up all year but holiday magic brings them together for cranberry one holiday eve!
Runner up: NOW THAT’S WHAT I CALL CHRISTMAS
Just last night on the Disneyland Holiday TV special, this diva belted out her instant classic (that she wrote back in 1994) and the world sang with her: “All I Want for Christmas Is You!” Her gospel tracks on this album get you rolling into the holidays and praying for her to do a whole gospel album. I know there was MERRY CHRISTMAS II YOU but it just wasn’t as DIVAlicious!
Runner up: CELINE DION – These Are Special Times
Not only do we miss our favorite voices singing to us regularly, but the arrangements on this show have always been worth a closer listen. They artfully highlight everyone’s voices through their choices of songs and partners. My favorite features Santana (Naya Rivera) singing “Santa Baby.” I love how her voice captures the classic tune, but one can sense the power she’s holding back!
Runner Up: A CHARLIE BROWN CHRISTMAS
DISNEY CHRISTMAS FAVORITES, VOL. 2
Honestly, pick up any Disney Christmas album and you’ll find a wonderful collection of classics and a new song or two. Characters will make you smile with songs, or you’ll find classic holiday tunes from the Parks. I’ve never gone wrong with any holiday album from them and my kids love each one.
Runner Up: TIM BURTON’S A NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS
While Pentatonix is bringing a capella to the forefront again, I’m guessing The Nylons probably helped influence them. You may know them best from their song “Lion Sleeps Tonight” but you need to know their version of “Carol of the Bells! Rather than a Runner Up in this category, let’s turn right into…
2016 CHRISTMAS MUSIC
Speaking of Pentatonix, their career crescendo has hit a high note with the release of this, their 2nd, Christmas album. This group of vocalists who came from a variety of colleges (even one high school) and singing backgrounds to form the group that got its start on Youtube.com. Their “Hallelujah” video, released just 5 weeks ago, already has close to 12 million views.
Sarah’s angelic voice brings me to tears when singing any song, so pairing her with classic Christmas tunes truly brings the most golden sound you’ll hear. After hearing her ethereal version of “Angels We Have Heard On High” you’ll feel as though angels were singing directly to you.
For those of you who may not know who makes up this duo, it’s a musical partnership of actress Zooey Deschanel on vocals and ukelele and M. Ward on guitars. Their throwback sound perfectly teases us with an island holiday wishing “Mele Kalikimaka” – a classic everyone knows the chorus to, but now you can learn the rest of the verses.
What about you?
What is your favorite Christmas album? Will you add to your collection?
If you wrote a holiday song about your life what would it be called?
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