I have a strict policy when it comes to Christmas music: none until the day after Thanksgiving. Christmas music before Thanksgiving is, well, just wrong.
But come Black Friday, and my iPod, car stereo, and TV (the radio channels on satellite) play nothing but Christmas music. For one month–one glorious month–our family loses itself in the sounds of the season. Our playlist includes both modern and classic tunes. We’re always looking to expand it, but that’s a discriminating affair. Christmas songs are a dime a dozen. Only the best tracks get airtime in the Mariner household.
So if you’re looking to enrich your own Christmas playlist, allow me to make a few recommendations (titles hyperlinked to Amazon and iTunes – I get no kickbacks):
Henry Mancini – A Merry Mancini Christmas
This may just by my favorite Christmas album. Growing up, it was one of three vinyl Christmas records we had (the others were Christmas with the Chipmunks and Mickey’s Christmas Carol). These songs epitomize vintage Christmas music. My favorite song is the instrumental “Carol For Another Christmas.”
Barry Manilow – Because It’s Christmas
I can’t stand Barry Manilow, but I love his Christmas album like crazy. Favorite tracks are “A Christmas Song” and “For Unto Us a Child Is Born.”
Amy Grant – Home For Christmas
This one is Meadow’s all-time Favorite. Amy Grant was born to record Christmas music. Favorite tracks are “Joy to the World” and Breath of Heaven.”
Sara Evans – I’ll Be Home For Christmas – EP
Seems like this one’s exclusive to iTunes. It’s a 4 track compilation of holiday songs released previously on compilation albums, plus a duet, “New Again,” with Brad Paisley. Sara Evans’ voice is to die for. Anything she sings is worth buying, and this EP doesn’t disappoint.
Here’s a list of noteworthy tracks. If you’re like me and purchase lots of individual tracks from places like iTunes, I highly suggest you check out the following:
Patti Page – “Where Did the Snowman Go?”
Zee Avi – “No Christmas For Me”
Jon Schmidt – “Pachelbel Meets U2”
Chicago – “The Little Drummer Boy”
What are your recommendations?