‘Tis the season to fill up on Thanksgiving leftovers and decorate your Christmas trees! As we grow older each year, Christmas may take on a different meaning for each of us, but holiday songs will always be around for us to enjoy. As new artists emerge, we may even find a version we enjoy better than the original! If you’re like me, the same albums have been on repeat from last year and some of these Christmas songs can get a little too repetitive. So, I’ve put together a list of good Christmas songs, some classics that never get old, as well as some new ones to add to your holiday playlists, that you’ll actually want to listen to this holiday season!
1. All I Want for Christmas Is You, Mariah Carey
This hit single was released in 1994 off of Mariah Carey’s holiday album entitled Merry Christmas. It has since been covered by a variety of artists, including Shania Twain and John Mayer. With its catchy chorus and Mariah’s whistle tones, it’s easy to see why this cheery chart topper is considered one of the greatest Christmas songs of all time.
2. It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas, Michael Buble
There’s a reason Mr. Buble gets his own Christmas special each year – his voice is simply angelic. Good Christmas songs are just even better when Buble sings ’em. This song is the first track listed on his Christmas album, making it the perfect song to get you in the Christmas spirit. I know I’m not alone when I say that this album has been on repeat throughout the season since its release in 2011.
3. Merry Christmas Baby, Hunter Hayes
Originally composed by Charles Brown, “Merry Christmas Baby” was performed by Hunter Hayes as part of the 2014 Christmas special, CMA Country Christmas. Hunter does a fantastic job of keeping with the original rock and jazz tunes, while still adding his personal country flare. I truly do feel like I’m “living in paradise” while listening to this song.
4. Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas, Sam Smith
Sam Smith has had a widely successful two years, between winning four Grammy awards and touring to sold out venues around the world. He has proven his mastery of ballads with singles like “Stay With Me” and “Lay Me Down.” His soft vocals and British accent contribute to a beautiful, modern version of the 1940’s classic “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas.”
5. Baby It’s Cold Outside, Colbie Caillat and Gavin DeGraw
With stupendous success as individual arists, Colbie Callait and Gavin DeGraw prove the combination of their voices is a force to be reckoned with. Callait is no stranger to contributing to duets, like those of Jason Mraz and Brad Paisley. This version is upbeat, lighthearted, and a wonderful way to spread Christmas cheer.
6. That’s Christmas to Me, Pentatonix
Pentatonix has definitely found a way to make acapella cool again. The title track off their second holiday album, “That’s Christmas to Me,” warms the hearts of people everywhere. Pentatonix sing about people’s Christmas traditions (from staying up on Christmas Eve to hanging stockings by the tree) in hopes of building their listener’s anticipation for the holiday season.
7. Christmas Love, Justin Bieber
Before his comeback earlier this year with hits like “What Do You Mean?” and “Sorry,” 17-year-old Justin establishes creative direction by writing original content for the majority of his holiday songs. With lyrics like “stay close to the ones you love” and “you’re the gift I love the best,” Bieber knows how to make you feel special for the holidays.
8. Let It Snow! Let it Snow! Let it Snow!, Dean Martin
Dean’s version of “Let It Snow” has become the most well-known adaptation. As I listen to this song, I can’t help but dream of potentially having a white Christmas and building a snowman in my front yard.
9. The Christmas Song (Merry Christmas to You), Nat King Cole
This song is a definite must have on your Christmas playlist. It’s a peaceful reminder of all the exciting things that occur during the season. I picture families snuggling up to a fire, decorating the tree, and baking Christmas cookies while I listen to this classic song.
10. A Holly Jolly Christmas, Burl Ives
Ives’ rendition particularly gets me in a “giving” mood because I envision everyone saying hello to each other on the streets enjoying cups of cheer. This song was featured on the 1964 holiday special, “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer,” along with other classics such as “Silver and Gold” where Ives’ voice is portrayed as a jolly snowman.
11. Jingle Bell Rock, Bobby Helms
Good Christmas songs like this one will always get the crowd singing. When this song plays, you may either think of the Home Alone movies or the Mean Girls’ rendition. This song has been covered by many artists including George Strait and the Jonas Brothers, but nothing compares to the voice of Bobby Helms.
12. Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree, Brenda Lee
Surprisingly enough, Brenda Lee recorded this song when she was only thirteen years old. This is the perfect Christmas song to dance to, so let’s all pretend we’re Kevin McAllister and have a house party.
13. White Christmas, Frank Sinatra
Personally, I am a huge fan of Frank Sinatra. His multiple albums prove that he can cover any holiday classic. This song takes me back to the simpler times where I imagine the streets are filled with horse drawn carriages and the snow sparkles all around.
14. Sleigh Ride, Ella Fitzgerald
Elf is my favorite Christmas movie and I’m reminded of Buddy’s Christmas spirit whenever I hear this song. I love the trumpets and the jazz tones exhibited throughout the jingle. I dare you not to sing along to this one!
15. It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year, Andy Williams
Christmas really is the most wonderful time of the year! This song makes me want to go out and sing Christmas carols, send cards to loved ones, and throw holiday parties. Even though Andy Williams’ version is the most popular, Garth Brooks and Harry Connick Jr. do the song justice as well.