What’s a holiday without Christmas music? Now the real question is actually, do you boycott Christmas music till after Thanksgiving?
I used too, until college.
But the time after Thanksgiving is so crammed – finals, packing up for the end of the semester, getting back home – it feels like Christmas time is cut in half!
And when you can finally breathe, and start enjoying the Christmas season, well, you only have 10 days left before Dec 25th!
So, this year and last year, I started listening to Christmas music pre-Thanksgiving.
I don’t break out decorations and watch Hallmark Christmas movies, yet. But I do feel as though I can enjoy the holiday season more completely.
Now that we’ve settled that question, we can talk about what Christmas music is on my playlist!
Each year, I look forward to new holiday albums. Peter Hollens and the Piano Guys never disappoint. This year I’m excited for Leslie Odom Jr’s album, and Lindsey Stirling.
My Favorite Christmas Music for 2017
Peter Hollens – A Hollens Family Christmas
I think Peter Hollens is the King of Christmas®. Wait, that title probably belongs to Michael Bublé???
But for 2017 music, the title goes to Peter and Company. I do love Hollens. And his Christmas songs are magical.
Favorite on Album – December Song
Peter wrote this song last year, and I’ve played it on repeat alot since. Mixing Silent Night, Come Let us Adore Him and his own lyrics, it’s just perfect.
The album includes a regular version, and a bonus track A Capella version.
And when Peter Hollens belts Why can’t we just hold on to Silent Night, Holy night, I sometimes cry.
Leslie Odom Jr – Simply Christmas
The newest singer on my 2017 track. Leslie Odom Jr is famous for originally playing Aaron Burr in Hamilton. His voice is gold! A perfect blend of jazz and traditional Christmas sounds.
I could easily call this album soulful. It’s somber. And beautiful.
From the loneliness of Winter Song to Ave Marie, the music is a varied melody of Christmas themes.
Also, there’s some interesting ideas for Christmas music.
I’d never include My Favorite Things from The Sound of Music as Christmas Music, but with the right twist, it does sound Christmassy!
Favorite on Album – The First Noel
This is probably my new favorite version. It’s slow pacing, piano accompaniment, and Leslie’s splendid voice are just gorgeous. Sung with such heart.
Lindsey Stirling – Warmer in the Winter
This is my first Lindsey Stirling album I’ve added to my library! How have I missed out on her music? Of course, I’ve seen a couple of her Youtube videos, but I hadn’t ever added her stuff to a playlist.
I will say, I’m not a fan of everything. But her music rings with energy, and is so fun!
I’d listen to Hollens and Leslie Odom Jr for quiet reflection. Piano Guys for Christmas spirit while cramming on homework. And Pentatonix for Christmas mood while I’m decorating.
But Stirling is a perfect trip playlist, a dash through snow. Her music is frigid but upbeat.
Favorite on Album – Christmas C’mon
This song cracks me up. It’s so funny. So it’s my favorite.
Pentatonix – Christmas Deluxe
Is Christmas complete without a pandora playlist of Pentatonix holiday music? Hardly.
This group always dominates my Christmas lists, simply because. They are perfect background music while you’re baking, making Christmas decor, or hanging out with relatives.
I’m also really happy Feliz Navidad isn’t on this album!
Though they tried hard on other albums, I still can’t stand Feliz Navidad. Though I will give them a toast for doing their best with that most annoying of Christmas songs.(That title might actually belong to Jingle Bell Rock?)
Favorite on Album – Coventry Carol
I really like how Pentatonix takes old carols and creates such beautiful arrangements. Coventry Carol is lovely, peaceful and old.
Piano Guys – Christmas Together
You might notice, I include The Piano Guys in a lot of my playlists. And Christmas is no exception.
I eagerly anticipate each of their albums, and fall in love with their music.
One of my favorite tricks The Piano Guys has is blending songs into one piece. They do this twice on their latest album, but my favorite is Little Drummer Boy/Do You Hear What I Hear.
I think both of those songs are overlooked, and I simply love the Piano Guys version. It’s so upbeat, with some fun instrumental work. And of course, drums.
There’s also some fun vocal tracks with Peter Hollens!!!
Favorite on Album – The Sweetest Gift
Tears, Tears, Tears
I wondered how Annie Schmidt’s death would affect The Piano Guy’s music this year. And this song is such a tearful tribute, though I cry whenever I hear it. The Piano Guys don’t often include words with their music but this song does.
I’m happy it gave comfort to Jon Schmidt and his family – and they shared that with us on this album.
When do you start listening to Christmas Music?
Before or after Thanksgiving?
Do you have a favorite Christmas music collection? Or a favorite Christmas artist? Also, I completely forgot Josh Groban! Does he also belong on my list?
Music with or without lyrics?