Do you struggle to find holiday music that your whole family will like? Are you sick of hearing the same carols, year after year? It can be difficult to break out of the "Jingle Bells" rut; the good news is, there’s a lot of Christmas music out there that you and your family will enjoy, from old favorites to brand new songs sure to become Christmas classics.
Below are some general recommendations for finding Christmas music you’ll like, and a few suggestions of albums or artists who have different musical styles.
- Pick music that is right for the situation. If you’re hosting a large family gathering, you want something that everyone can bond over because they know it so well. Bing Crosby’s rendition of "White Christmas," Nat King Cole’s Christmas album, or a selection of traditional Christmas hymns makes everyone feel the familiar holiday warmth. If you’re hosting a gathering of friends, try something that not everyone has heard, and mix it up with some humor! Believe it or not, James Brown released a Christmas album called "Funky Christmas," and while it may not be his best work, it sure is funny to hear the Godfather of Soul asking Santa to "go straight to the ghetto this year"!
- Learn whether any of your favorite artists have released Christmas albums or contributed to holiday compilations. Look up the name of your favorite artist + "Christmas" or "Holiday Music" on google.com to see if anything comes up. You might discover that they have collaborated with other artists you don’t know, but who could become your new favorites!
- Go to your public library – they usually will allow you to check out CDs, and their holiday music collections are generally quite large. Try out some Christmas music from a different culture! There’s more to Latin American holiday songs than just "Feliz Navidad," you know.
- Last but not least, listen to what you like. No one wants to be at a gathering where the host is too busy putting up with bad Christmas music to enjoy themselves.
Here are some Christmas albums you might not know about, but might like. Cut and paste the links into your browser to hear some of this music on Amazon.com:
- The Jethro Tull Christmas Album
- Harry Connick Jr., What A Night!
- Over the Rhine, Snow Angels
- James Brown, Funky Christmas
- Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, A Classical Christmas