Well, it all depends on you. I’m more of a contemporary type but I have nothing against the classics! I love ‘Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer’ and ‘White Christmas’ as much as the songs I’ll mention below.
Some people will argue that contemporary Christmas songs don’t have the same feel as the classics but I tend to disagree. The ‘new’ Christmas songs give a stronger message in my opinion.
Who doesn’t remember Elvis’ ‘Blue Christmas’, John Lennon’s ‘War is Over’ or Band Aid’s ‘Do They Know It’s Christmas’? Those have become classics of their own. Don’t lie, we all listen to those…
Let’s go back to Band Aid. That song, released in 1984, gathered all of Britain’s top musicians and singers for one good cause. You had U2, Duran Duran, Culture Club, Spandau Ballet, Wham! etc. It created a frenzy among music fans that, like me, love British music. I mean, they were all there! It also created the ‘charity songs’. The ones that followed were good (USA for Africa, Northern Lights, Band Aid 2.0) but they didn’t have the same emotion behind it. For me, ‘Do They Know It’s Christmas’ is one of the songs that will always play during the Holidays.
The real ‘classic’ contemporary Christmas song is obviously John Lennon’s ‘War Is Over (Happy Xmas)’. That song brings most of the people I know to tears. It makes you think, it makes you react. When you hear Lennon asking ‘What have you done?’, you think of the ‘more’ you could have done that year. You think of the people who need help around the world, the people close to you. With wars going on all around the world, the song is still of this present time.
Of course, you have the pop artists that spice up the Christmas classics. Do we really need to have a pop version of ‘White Christmas’? That song belongs to Bing Crosby, it shouldn’t be redone. The upbeat ones, it’s nice to hear with a more modern song but there are a few Christnas song that should never be touched. Again, just my opinion…
You also have the songs that make you laugh. You have Sam Bradley’s ‘Christmas Lights’ which he based on a song of his most recent album ‘Zuni’. It’s great! The right sense of humor with a great beat. I have been following Sam for a few years and every year, he treats his fans to a classic then a song filled with humor. That is a great mix although, I’d love it if we could download both songs. He offers the classic free on his website and the other one on YouTube.
All this to say that Christmas songs are a personal choice. It depends on the occasion and the people you’re with. For me, tomorrow, it’ll probably be the more contemporary ones. It’ll depend on the mood of the people that are coming over for dinner.
Have a Merry Christmas, everyone!! I hope it’s filled with music, good food, family and friends.