Monday, November 26, 2012

This Year's Christmas Playlist

I love Christmas songs. Old ones and new ones. Sincere ones and cynical ones. Happy ones and sad ones. Jesusy ones and secular ones. All of them!

Well. Not really all of them, because then I could just put on a Pandora holiday station and be done with  it. Instead, I have spent the past few years carefully crafting the perfect Christmas playlist. I tinker with it every year, dropping a few songs and adding a few others. And then I listen to it ALL THE TIME from Thanksgiving through Christmas. And by then I am usually tired enough of it that it's not too painful to say goodbye to it until the next Thanksgiving.

So here is this year's list. It's a work in progress, as I haven't finished adding this year's new songs. I'm considering selections from A Very She & Him Christmas, Dan Zanes' Christmas in Concord, and maybe some more Sufjan Stevens. And I need to find a version of The Holly and the Ivy that I like, because it's one of the songs Gus (and the other carollers) sing in A Christmas Carol.

A few notes:
*yes, there are two different versions of Joni Mitchell's "River" on here. So? Oh, also "Someday at Christmas"
*The Barenaked Ladies kind of annoy the crap out of me, generally speaking, but their God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen is ridiculously appealing. Elf's Lament is on there mostly because Dave likes it
*songs about fathers who get drunk and ruin Christmas are over-represented here.

Let It Be Christmas: Alan Jackson
Christmas Must Be Tonight: The Band
Elf's Lament: Barenaked Ladies
God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen: Barenaked Ladies and Sarah McLachlan
Rudy: The Be Good Tanyas
Go Tell It On the Mountain: The Blind Boys of Alabama
My Dreams of Christmas: The Boxmasters
The Nutcracker Suite: Brian Setzer
Silver and Gold: Burl Ives
Blue Christmas: Chris Isaak
Run Rudolph Run: Chuck Berry
What's This?: Danny Elfman
Please Daddy (Don't Get Drunk This Christmas): The Decemberists
Angel, Won't You Call Me?: The Decemberists
Santa Claus is Back in Town: Dwight Yoakam
Santa Claus is Coming to Town: Eddy Arnold
Sleigh Ride: Ella Fitzgerald
Light of the Stable: Emmylou Harris
Frosty the Snowman: Fiona Apple
(It Must've Been Ol') Santa Claus: Harry Connick, Jr.
River: Indigo Girls
Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer: Jack Johnson
Someday at Christmas: Jack Johnson
Christmas is Coming: John Denver & The Muppets
A Baby Just Like You: John Denver & The Muppets
12 Days of Christmas: John Denver & The Muppets
The Peace Carol: John Denver & The Muppets
Happy Xmas (War is Over): John Lennon
Silent Night All Day Long: John Prine
The Little Drummer Boy: Johnny Cash
River: Joni Mitchell
Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!: Lena Horne
Baby, It's Cold Outside: Leon Redbone and Zooey Deschanel
Winter Wonderland: Leon Redbone
'Zat You, Santa Claus?: Louis Armstrong
Once in Royal David's City: Mary Chapin Carpenter
Children Go Where I Send Thee: Natalie Merchant
Merry Christmas Baby: Otis Redding
Here It Is Christmas Time: Old 97's
Fairytale of New York: The Pogues
2000 Miles: The Pretenders
Boxing Day: Relient K
Merry Christmas from the Family: Robert Earl Keen
Christmas in Hollis: Run DMC
It Came Upon a Midnight Clear: Sixpence None the Richer
Someday at Christmas: Stevie Wonder
I Saw Three Ships: Sting
O Come, O Come Emmanuel: Sufjan Stevens
The Friendly Beasts: Sufjan Stevens
O Holy Night: Tracy Chapman
Christmas (Baby Please Come Home): U2
O Come All Ye Faithful: Weezer
Silent Night: Weezer
Pretty Paper: Willie Nelson
Please Come Home for Christmas: Willie Nelson


  1. This is an AWESOME list. You have a little bit of everything. May I suggest Straight No Chaser, the 12 days of Christmas, The Christmas Can Can, or Who Spiked the Eggnog.

    They make me smile all the time.

    BTW God rest ye merry gentlemen with BNL and Sarah McL is probably my favorite Christmas song of all time.

    1. Thanks! And thanks for the suggestions....I will check them out!

  2. I lovvvvvvvvvvvvvve She & Him. And U2.. and Weezer... Thanks for having such great taste in music :)

  3. Is Run DMC on there for Dave too?


  4. Ah, you slipped in Pretty Paper right there at the end! I almost thought it had been overlooked. But WHERE is Dolly Parton's Hardy Candy Christmas, woman?? Emmylou's Light of the Stable is one of my favorites, the whole album. And I like Martina McBride's version of Silent Night. Um, can I have a cd of this playlist or something? :)


Like all human bloggers, I love comments! I make a valiant effort to respond to as many as I can and to hop over and check out your blog if you have one. So let me know you're here, if you have a bit of extra time on your hands :)