My obsession with Christmas music is laughably paradoxical. As a crazed music fanatic that constantly denounces overplayed songs and genres, I’ll forever elate at the faintest inclusion of the most overplayed songs of all time: holiday jingles. It doesn’t matter if it’s December 25th or June 25th; if Nat King Cole’s “The Christmas Song (Merry Christmas To You)” pops up on shuffle, that volume bar is being raised straight through the roof whether you like it or not. That being said, other people’s general distaste with Christmas music was once again brought to my attention through the most groundbreaking venting medium of our generation: a defiant Facebook status. To paraphrase, the status read “My least favorite thing about Christmas is the annoying and overplayed songs. What’s your least favorite thing about Christmas?” Regardless of my friend’s flawless response of “My least favorite part about Christmas is negative Christmas Nancys like you”, the status still brought up an important point. Where in the world are all the new Christmas songs?
The answer is aggravatingly simple for those who are tired of the run-of-the-mill holiday stock. Bands/artists come out with new holiday singles ALL THE TIME. And no, I’m not talking about the 10,000th rendition of “Jingle Bells” sung by this year’s American Idol starlet. Completely original and often daring holiday singles have been released by major bands/artists like Phoenix, Jack Johnson, Barenaked Ladies, and Fitz & The Tantrums all within the past several years. Why haven’t you heard of them you ask? You haven’t heard anything new because Frank Sinatra, Trans-Siberian Orchestra, Nat King Cole, and Andy Williams are all safe. They will all sell, year after year, no matter what the circumstances. The privileged and expectant American public is starting to acknowledge this stale music scene. The people need new holiday jingles to rock around the Christmas tree to, and your ole’ pal FeenyFresh is here to help (per usual).
Before I throw these new tunes in your face, you have to realize the hidden costs. For example, the comradery that each songs builds within a unified environment of encouraged singalongs is an overlooked factor of the general distaste for new holiday jingles. It’s incredibly tough for unheard content to break into the Christmas scene because, as simple as it sounds, no one knows what to do with it or how to react to it, especially when listening within a group. New content has to stick it’s temporarily unrecognizable foot in the door at some point, however, and what better time than now. So without further ado, here is a collection of 20 holiday songs released in the past decade that the world subjectively should have heard by now. As a disclaimer, there are a few new renditions of older Christmas songs, but they are significantly different from the original to the extent that I still felt it fair to include them.
I also feel the need to sneak in the Killer’s 2013 single “Christmas in L.A.”, which is featured on their new Christmas album “Don’t Waste Your Wishes”. Why didn’t I just throw the song in the Spotify playlist? Because of some damn major corporate partnerships, that’s why! The Killers new album is only available to stream on iTunes & Apple Music, though all proceeds benefit the (RED) charity to support the battle against AIDS in Africa. I guess their intentions are in the right place, even if I can’t mindlessly assume all their songs will appear in the Spotify search bar like the expectant millennial that I am.