Back when I was a poor executive assistant, my go-to gift was a mix-tape (or CD, if you will). I worked for a record label so I had blank CDs and a massive CD-copier at my disposal. I would spend hours putting together the perfect mixes for whatever event was coming up: birthdays (mostly party songs), St. Patrick’s Day (lots of songs about getting drunk), or Valentine’s Day (either a Love Sucks! or a Love is Awesome! mix, depending on your relationship status). My favorite mix was for the holidays – I loved finding songs that were a little different and introducing them to my friends.
I don’t make mixes for my presents anymore, but I still make them for fun. Here are my favorite songs you need to improve your holiday playlists.
~ “River” by Travis
This is one of my favorite Joni Mitchell songs of all time, but Fran Healy’s voice was made to sing this song. It’s gorgeous, and I’ve been known to listen to this song in the middle of June, just because I love it so much.
~ “Oi To The World” by No Doubt
Gwen has the perfect voice for this sassy song. Can’t we all just get along?
~ “Frosty The Snowman” Fiona Apple
If Fiona ever released an album of standards, I would buy it in an instant. She nails this jazzy-blues version of Frosty.
~ “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” by Coldplay
True, Chris Martin could sing the phone book and I would love it. This version of the song is such a stand-out because of how simple it is. Just a voice and a piano, and it’s so beautiful.
~ “Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays” by NSYNC
I’M NOT MADE OF STONE. This song is catchy, damn it!
~ “I’ve Got My Love to Keep Me Warm (Stuhr Remix)” by Kay Starr
There is an entire album of remixed Christmas standards (Christmas Remixed – Holiday Classics Re-Grooved), but this one is my favorite. It’s fun to dance along to the old-school hits.
~ “I Want” by Tenacious D and Sum 41
Jack Black. Enough said.
~ “Silver Bells” by Schuyler Fisk
I have been singing “Silver Bells” since my Kindergarten holiday program a zillion years ago, so I have a soft spot for it. That being said, Schuyler’s gorgeous voice knocks this out of the park. When your parents ask you who’s singing, be sure to tell them it’s the coal miner’s granddaughter.
What do you think? What songs would you add to my list?