Saturday, December 10, 2011

Top Ten Holiday Albums 2011

I love the holidays and I especially love holiday music.  Since childhood the familiar tunes have rung through our home for baking, wrapping and caroling.  My tastes have changed since my spiritual leanings have but this list has something for everyone who loves Christmas music.  You can find my top ten holiday movies here.  Please feel free to add your own must haves in the comments.

10.  The Rat Pack Christmas Album.  These songs are classic renditions of many favorites.  Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Sammy Davis Jr. sing out White Christmas, Jingle Bells and Winter Wonderland along with one that I've come to love Let's Start the New Year Right.

9. Dolly Parton & Kenny Rogers' Once Upon A Christmas.   Growing up with country music meant that I perused several country holiday albums as a kid.  This one sticks with me because of the original songs like Christmas Without You and With Bells On.  The twang of Dolly and Kenny is homey and simple which makes for a good album.

8.  Elvis Presley If Every Day Was Like Christmas.   Another album from my childhood although we listened to Blue Christmas on vinyl.  But when I was linking to these the reviews for the cd version were negative so this album has all the songs I loved plus some others that sound nice.  Blue Christmas has to be one of the best songs Elvis ever sang and Santa Bring My Baby Back to Me is pure fun.  

7.  Melissa Etheridge A New Thought for Christmas.  I mentioned this album last year and it is really a nice departure from the typical albums with the classic songs.  Her rendition of O Night Divine is refreshing and focuses on the solstice.  This album rocks the holidays.

6.  Loreena McKennit A Midwinter Night's Dream.  Besides the cover art this album has some lovely old time sounding songs.  Gloucestershire Wassail, Good King Wenceslas and Coventry Carol are great and I love her originals Snow and Seeds of Love as well.

5.  Canned Heat Christmas Album.  Are you looking for some bluesy songs to get you dancing and grooving...then this is your album.  Deck the Halls, Boogie Boy ( Little Drummer Boy) and more get you out of your seat and moving.  This is not your grandma's Christmas carols.

4.  Santa Baby!  Various Artists.  The above album is similar to the compilation I have but it isn't the exact same.  I wasn't able to find it to link to precisely.  But if you happen to find it it's good.  Eartha Kitt's Santa Baby, Patti Page's Boogie Woogie Santa Claus, Louis Armstrong's Zat You Santa Claus all terrific and not the repetitive songs that can grate on your nerves sometimes.

3.  John Denver & The Muppets A Christmas Together.  I just discovered this one this year...funny since it was originally released in the 1970's.  Sweet and funny it's a perfect album to share with kids and enjoy.  The Twelve Days of Christmas version here is charming.

2.   Michael Buble Christmas.  His voice is like butter I tell you.  Great arrangements on this album, I love the style of old meets modern in the way he sings.  Holly Jolly Christmas is a favorite and the guy version of Santa Baby, very meterosexual! 

1.  Aimee Mann One More Drifter in the Snow.  There is just something about Aimee Mann's low and moody voice that exemplifies the holiday season.  Firelight, snow gently falling, drinking something warm - just a few things this album conjures for me.  Her version of You're a Mean One, Mr. Grinch is good for kids and adults (and really I'm impressed that she included it) and What Ever Happened to Christmas is contemplative and serene.  This album is a great way to pull some reflective quiet into a hectic time of year.

1 comment:

TMCPhoto said...

Love Aimee Mann especially the Grinch song, I sing along to that one all year long. One of my other holiday favourites is The Raveonettes Christmas Song. And then there's the holiday songs that aren't We always listen to love and Rockets when we wrap gifts not sure why we just do