Since I got some heat for my Worst Songs post yesterday, please allow me to tell you that I'm not all Scrooge-y. In fact, I love Christmas music. Look--I have a lot more "favorite" songs than "Worst" songs. The best parts of Christmas for me are the songs and all the Christmas cards (especially the ones with pictures). I love seeing how much all the kids have grown.
Here's a list (again, in no particular order) of songs that make me smile and feel all warm and fuzzy. Click on the linky-loos to hear (or read about) the songs to see why I like them so much. These songs almost make me want to mull cider or bake cookies or, gasp, shop. Almost.
1) O Holy Night--I SO love this song. Everybody from Kelly Clarkson to Carrie Underwood to John Berry has done this one and I like them all. In fact, you have to just completely stink as a singer for me to not like this song (ahem...Cher, Avril, Mariah). I can't stand Celine Dion, but I really like the way she sings this one. My favorite version is by Martina McBride. I get chills every time.
2) Silent Night--This is in Irish, but Enya has such a beautiful voice that I had to include her. My favorite way to hear this one is at the Christmas Eve service with all the lights off, candles flickering, and nothing but guitar and two vocalists. But I also loved when Six's first grade friends sang it in German at the school choir concert.
3) Merry Christmas Darling--Karen Carpenter. She had such a smooth, clean voice. (This entry is totally for Dan. My friend Holli is either falling asleep or vomiting right now at just the mention of this song.)
4) Happy Xmas (War is Over)--If you can get over Lennon's blatant, in your face political statement and just enjoy the music, it's lovely. Shame about Yoko being crazy and all, but I love the sound of this song.
5) Simply Having a Wonderful Christmas Time--Sir Paul has such a nice voice. Dan doesn't care for this one, but he likes Karen Carpenter, so clearly he doesn't know what he's talking about.
6) Let It Snow--as recorded by Ricochet when my friend Junior Bryant was still in the band. We listen to this on CD every year when we're putting up the tree.
7) Away in a Manger--I like it best when it's sung by little kids at church. Or my own children. Because, according to those wise prophets, Destiny's Child, "Christmas was made for de chidruns."
8) Carol of the Bells--I loved how it sounded when we played it on handbells at my grandmother's church. So beautiful.
9) Blue Christmas--Elvis' rendition is the one true blue Christmas. Accept no substitutes.
10) Please Come Home for Christmas--You know what I'm talking about..."Baby Please Come Home." The Eagles version absolutely rocked, but Jon Bon Jovi sang it well too. If you watch his video, he and Cindy Crawford practically do the nasty right there on screen...because nothing says Christmas like simulated nookie.
12) White Christmas--Bing Crosby, Marjorie Reynolds in HOLIDAY INN. Enough said. (We'll just pretend that her voice was not overdubbed by Martha Mears. Let me have this one moment, people!)
13) The Christmas Song--Nat King Cole. Rough song if your name is Chet (think about it--take your time), but it's a classic all the same.
14) Baby It's Cold Outside--the way Bette Midler and James Caan sang it on the FOR THE BOYS soundtrack. Just love it.
15) Anything from the Rankin/Bass 1964 Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer movie. "We're a Couple of Misfits, There's Always Tomorrow, the Isle of Misfit Toys, etc. Throw snowballs if you must, but I love all the animated cheesiness.
16) The Christmas Waltz--Frank Sinatra. Who doesn't love a Christmas message in three quarter time?
17) I'll Be Home for Christmas--Frank Sinatra. This song chokes me up every time. I think about all the soldiers who would rather be at home with their families.
18) Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas--Frank Sinatra. That's right. All Frank, all the time. You got a problem with that?