View Full Version : The carol that you sing: Talkin' 'bout Christmas music

12-11-2012, 12:46 AM
It's come to my attention that some people around these parts are mad Scroogin', so I'm making this thread for purpose of demonstrating that Christmas music doesn't have to be terrible.

I'll start by quoting False's post over yonder, 'cause he knows what's up:

Anyone who doesn't adore Nat King Cole singing The Christmas Song (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=__kQ1PCP6B0) should kill themselves for being a soulless, heartless, sociopath!

Whoa! Strong words there, friend! But let's look at that link. Just look at this motherfucker. Have you ever seen anyone so happy to be singing about Christmas? No, you fucking haven't! It just isn't Christmas without good old Nat.

Even more essential, though, is one of his greatest contemporaries: Bing Crosby (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GJSUT8Inl14). And if the classic stuff isn't enough, you've always got him and Bowie doing the best Christmas song (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ADbJLo4x-tk).

And while I'm on the subject of duets: Santa Claus Is Coming To Town (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RN_K_r_95rI) by Frank and Cindi, which for my money is the best version of the song. Jackson 5 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VCEZEOYdfwo) is a close second, though.

Speaking of, though! I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus is pretty dumb and obnoxious, except when done by li'l Michael (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6UJcrYrDcws).

I really shouldn't make a thread like this without giving The King a few (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OIF_rXj7mag) mentions (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5I2f1UJjiAA).

Here's a really great one by Louis Armstrong that I feel really doesn't get enough attention: 'Zat You, Santa Claus? (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KQQU2ykEQqo)

I have a weakness for Do They Know It's Christmas (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PBIjn8NHV-I), but I'm ready to admit that it's terrible and I'm a bad person.

This is just to start with; post your favorite Christmas/Holiday songs! I went pretty modern/pop heavy here, but I totally encourage people to get all classical too; I would but I don't know good versions of stuff like The Holly and The Ivy or Greensleeves(What Child Is This if you like Jesus or whatever) off the top of my head.

I didn't go with any obvious stuff like Vince Guaraldi or Muppets 'cause I figured those are kind of forgone conclusions around here. (People should still post them, though)

12-11-2012, 01:17 AM
The best Christmas song. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CjaPXihbORk)

12-11-2012, 01:36 AM
in b4 Santa Claus is a Black Man

Olli T
12-11-2012, 01:51 AM
I unashamedly love All I Want For Christmas Is You and this version is super adorable (http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=sWEfszb9h8Q)

12-11-2012, 02:25 AM
No Christmas song written after World War II is worth listening to unless it's this one (http://youtu.be/5ysfQjKKi70), this I declare.

NoŽl Nouvelet (http://youtu.be/tUGoxHEADG8) is from the the 1400s. It is my favorite.

12-11-2012, 02:40 AM
I'm getting sued by Santa (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mw7PSWLdaio&t=21s)

Paul le Fou
12-11-2012, 04:48 AM
I've always had a soft spot for Carol of the Bells (http://youtu.be/1TFrO8c_kVQ) in various and sundry versions. Also, White Christmas (Dhroo already linked Bing, which is like, what else do you need).

Also I can't shake this comic now that I've seen it. It hangs over me like a spectre whenever I hear Christmas songs. I think it has ruined Christmas.


12-11-2012, 05:23 AM
Diamond Dust Zone Act 1 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v4nP1Ggrm4Q)

12-11-2012, 02:34 PM
This entire album (http://www.amazon.com/A-Very-She-Him-Christmas/dp/B005KJZDXK) should be on everybody's Christmas music rotation.

Soren Highwind
12-11-2012, 03:20 PM
Diamond Dust Zone Act 1 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v4nP1Ggrm4Q)

Speakin' of Christmasy Sonic music... (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zLRbsdKmz1A)

Also, this totally counts, right? (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CXWcj4D559g)

12-11-2012, 03:35 PM
Diamond Dust Zone Act 1 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v4nP1Ggrm4Q)

Nein! The odd thing is that the Genesis version had a better soundtrack (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZEW0VOHaCOM), at least to me.

12-11-2012, 05:32 PM
also Carol of the Bells is the only good "real" Christmas song

Carol of the Bells is indeed great, but it was adapted in 1916 from a traditional Ukrainian New Years song. At the time the song was written, the new year began in what we now call March. It's definitely pre-Christian and probably prehistoric.

There are also songs about the other man in a red suit who can sometimes be found on rooftops and doesn't like it when people are naughty (https://dl.dropbox.com/u/106537416/audios/santaclaus-clean.mp3).

Ghost from Spelunker
12-11-2012, 07:31 PM
Whenever people mention "All I Want For Christmas is You" they mean some version that doesn't have Vince Vance (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I1VkMBi9vvw), and it's a crime. It's great even without the Benimaru hair.

Video game related: any ice level music in Croc. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rYPNtMVQ6c4&list=PL141371BF2992ACB3&index=13)

12-12-2012, 07:42 AM
I fuckin' love Christmas music, but I fuckin' hate having it inflicted on me in early November when I'm shopping at the drugstrore or whatever. You have to choose your Chrimmas music carefully, too, because the bad stuff is really bad. But once December rolls around, you can bet that the following albums are going to be in heavy rotation at Casa Banjo:

Vince Guaraldi's A Charlie Brown Christmas
Pretty much anything by Bing Crosby
Sufjan Stevens' Songs for Christmas
ExciteMike's Christmas mix CD The Silent Knight Returns (seriously, every year, even though it actually arrived after Christmas the year that it was in the exchange)

This year, I've picked up a couple of new albums to mix things up a bit. Cee Lo Green's Magic Moment is actually kind of disappointing because it's so by-the-numbers, I was hoping that he would knock it out of the park and he seems to have bunted instead. It still has a few songs that rise above the rest, though, and by skipping the few that I like the least it winds up being a pretty enjoyable listen (much like his Ladykiller album, actually). The other album that I bought was the new Sufjan Stevens collection, Silver and Gold. I wasn't expecting to like it very much, honestly, since many of the tracks have that sort of electronic music bent to them that Age of Adz had, but there are also a bunch that are more acoustic and heartfelt. Barcarola (You Must Be a Christmas Tree) is my favorite track so far, but I haven't listened to it very many times just yet.

Also, don't forget this old thread (http://www.talking-time.net/showthread.php?t=6807), featuring peoples' suggestions for game music that sounds wintery.

12-12-2012, 10:41 AM
Kate Bush - December Will Be Magic Again (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pZiadb3bpOI)

Low - Just Like Christmas (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A-rvWoVX3t0)

Belle & Sebastian - O Come O Come Emmanuel (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6s25qJVER_U)

Tom Waits - Silent Night/Xmas Card From a Hooker in Minneapolis (http://vimeo.com/33803455)

Malcolm Middleton - We're All Going To Die (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BbL9Vsobx8I). Not technically about christmas, although the video does feature a Santa.

Wesley Willis - Merry Christmas
That should do it!

12-12-2012, 01:18 PM
I love the joyful, party atmosphere (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a8qE6WQmNus).

12-12-2012, 11:29 PM
Uh... "Weird Al" Yankovic's - Christmas At Ground Zero (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t039p6xqutU)? *shrug*

So now that I'm done with silliness and frivolity I'll offer the following (ear wormy) songs:
Suzy Snowflake (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FEe6KOWdbUs)
Hardrock, Coco and Joe (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VKGonDIq8gw)
(Of course I'm very nostalgic for them so your mileage might vary.)

I unashamedly love All I Want For Christmas Is You and this version is super adorable (http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=sWEfszb9h8Q):D Oh man... That started out pretty damn cute but then the backup singers just sent it overboard. (For some reason the way the backup singers were integrated gave me a real Muppets vibe.)

12-13-2012, 12:15 AM
Muppets or GTFO.

12-13-2012, 08:23 AM
I will say this: man, fuck Michael Bublť. His whole shtick is just taking the classic crooner songs from the 40s and 50s and rerecording them, only blander. He's Bing Crosby without the sincerity and Frank Sinatra without the style. The only thing he has on any of the classic singers is that he isn't dead, at least not biologically. I just heard about half of his Christmas album, and while most of it was fairly inoffensive, I almost lost it when I heard his version of Jingle Bells, which is exactly the arrangement that Crosby did with the Andrews Sisters almost 70 years ago. If your whole album consists of nothing but overplayed Christmas classics, at least try to come up with your own spin on them! Apparently, the album won the Juno award for best album of the year (not best holiday album, best OVERALL ALBUM), which just goes to show that there apparently does exist a major award with less meaning than the Grammy.

12-20-2012, 03:59 PM
Good news Christmas music haters, Christopher Lee has come to your rescue. (http://loudwire.com/christopher-lee-heavy-metal-classic-christmas-songs/)

12-22-2012, 01:53 AM
I found the best cash-in for this holiday season.

Get one of Pop's greatest Christmas songs, with 2012's biggest hit and you get this... (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lv5TXUrOGhs)

12-22-2012, 09:43 AM

12-22-2012, 09:52 AM
Muppets or GTFO.

This guy gets it. But only if you bring along John Denver.

12-22-2012, 10:00 AM

xckd proves its value once again.

12-22-2012, 04:15 PM
I'm not about the jesus' birthday aspect of Christmas any more, but goddamn I love some Hark the Herald Angel, and O Holy Night, and O Come Emmanuel.

the secular songs were usually just background music because omg jesus, but I had a very special connection with Winter Wonderland at one point.

12-22-2012, 04:46 PM
O Come Emmanuel

Yeah, I like that one, too. This (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R26jJaKnEeI) is a special favorite version for me.

12-22-2012, 06:23 PM
I am very fond of Duke Ellington's rendition of The Nutcracker Suite. Listen to (http://youtu.be/jRelnWvKXw4) the Arabian Dance.

12-23-2012, 07:50 PM
Good news Christmas music haters, Christopher Lee has come to your rescue. (http://loudwire.com/christopher-lee-heavy-metal-classic-christmas-songs/)

I picked it up for shits and giggles. It's so bad it's halfway good again. Christopher Lee has a great voice, but he's not a great singer. The arrangements are mediocre at best, and metal and Silent Night just don't go together. That said I can't help but crack a grin hearing pounding guitars downpicking power chords and Christopher Lee's voice booming "Pah-rum-pum-pum-pum!" I don't even really like "Little Drummer Boy".

My parents played all manner of Christmas songs from the good to the bad when I was growing up, starting from the first Sunday in Advent through January 6th. Besides the obvious Vince Guaraldi Trio's A Charlie Brown Christmas and Burl Ives' Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer soundtracks that I grew up with, I am also partial to Handel's Messiah - the whole thing, not just the "Hallelujah" chorus. Nat King Cole's "The Christmas Song" has already been mentioned upthread.

12-23-2012, 09:50 PM

Millie Pulled a Pistol On Santa

12-24-2012, 12:47 PM
A friend pointed me to a few Christmas pieces by Blackmore's Night: We Three Kings (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2TJdBD0Udkw&feature=youtu.be) and Christmas Eve (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xzd1qVtItIc&feature=youtu.be). I am reminded again that I really should buy something by them, Ritchie Blackmore is still a good guitarist.

12-24-2012, 01:09 PM
Video game related: any ice level music in Croc. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rYPNtMVQ6c4&list=PL141371BF2992ACB3&index=13)

Without a doubt.

12-25-2012, 07:27 AM
So did nobody else get Jonathan Coulton and John Roderick's Christmas album? (https://secure.jonathancoulton.com/ocaat/)

I think my favorite song on it is 2600, which happens to be one of the free preview songs. (http://www.pastemagazine.com/blogs/av/2012/11/stream-two-tracks-from-john-roderick-and-jonathan.html)

12-25-2012, 10:44 AM
Muppets or GTFO.

This guy gets it. But only if you bring along John Denver.

And this one (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bbtFu1nWN6s&feature=share) too.

12-26-2012, 04:23 PM
so all weekend i've been listening to religious christmas music, and ok, i concede, there are good carols out there.

But holy shit, guys, The Wexford Carol (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yxDZjg_Igoc) is so fucking good.

12-26-2012, 06:43 PM
I, uh... my band recorded an arrangement of Silent Night live. I wasn't actually there for this and was in no way involved, so it's kinda not plugging, right?

12-27-2012, 08:36 AM
My mother made me learn Donnie hathaway's This Christmas and I honestly kinda like playing it.

Johnny Unusual
12-22-2016, 05:48 AM

12-22-2016, 10:05 PM
This was always one of my favourites growing up:


(Not that I'd ever heard the Huron lyrics before finding this version. I think we only had English and French lyrics.)

Johnny Unusual
12-23-2016, 01:17 PM
And now, All the Carols (https://soundcloud.com/user-183375310/the-chaos-carol1).

Johnny Unusual
12-24-2016, 02:15 PM