My favorite Christmas songs
Do you ever hear those people complain when the stores start playing Christmas music the day after Halloween? Well I don’t mind at all.
In fact, a few Christmas carols in July wouldn’t bother me. I love to sing along with them, something not easily done because I can only carry a tune in a bucket that some would prefer to put over my head.
My singing is terrible, but who really cares? My sixth grade teacher, Mrs. Briggs, used to have us line up like a chorus and sing on Wednesdays. She would go around and listen to the individual singers and if they were hurting the overall sound, they got to go sit down. Nearly every Wednesday, I got to enjoy the songs from my desk with a red face.
Until Christmas time, that was. For some reason, my voice must have been better when we were singing Christmas songs. Maybe she was just a little more kind then. Either way, I do love those sings.
Honorable mention — There are so many great Christmas songs; 11-15 are favorites too, but for some reason, my top 10 just seemed a tiny notch better. Numbers 11-15 are “The Most Wonderful Time of the Year” by Andy Williams, “Christmas Time” by Stevie Wonder, “All I Want for Christmas is You” by Mariah Carey, “Merry Christmas Darling” by the Carpenters, “So This is Christmas” by John Lennon or Celine Dion, and anybody good doing “Away in a Manger.” I just snuck an extra one in.
No. 10 — “I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus” by the Jackson 5. Michael nailed it in this version released in 1970. It is easy to imagine a young Michael really excited at Christmas.
No. 9 — “Wonderful Christmastime” by Paul McCartney. One of the top worldwide favorites, McCartney performed the song first in 1979 and last did it publicly on Saturday Night Live last week.
No. 8 — “Christmas in Dixie” by Alabama. Alabama was one of my favorites and this song mentions Charlotte, Caroline and celebrates Christmas all through the south. It was first released in 1982.
No. 7 — “Blue Christmas” by Elvis Presley. I don’t think Elvis ever made a bad song. I love his gospel and Christmas music, and it was a fact that Elvis most enjoyed that music too. Elvis first recorded the song in 1957 and claimed it as his own favorite Christmas song. There is a great version with Martina McBride doing a duet with Elvis in one of those retro voice overs.
No. 6 — “I’ll Be Home for Christmas” by the Eagles. Sometimes called “Belles Will be Ringing,” it was released in 1978. Martina McBride had a version that topped the country charts and is also one of my favorites. Yes, I really like Martina.
No. 5 — “Old Toy Trains” by Roger Miller. It was released in 1967 about a little boy wanting to wait up for Santa and dad urging him to go on to bed. I love to play and sing this one, picked by Nashville as one of the top 50 country songs of all time.
No. 4 — “White Christmas” written by Irving Berlin in 1940 according to most accounts. No one is really sure where or exactly when Berlin wrote it. White Christmas, sung by Bing Crosby, is the largest-selling Christmas song of all time according to the Guiness Book of Records. I’m already excited that the forecast on the weather radio is calling for snow flurries on Christmas morning.
No. 3 — “Silver Bells” was first sung by Bob Hope and Marilyn Maxwell in the 1950 movie, “The Lemon Drop Kid.” It was originally named “Tinkle Bells,” but thankfully that didn’t last long.
No. 2 — “O Holy Night” composed by Adolphe Adam in 1847. My top two songs are obviously my favorite traditional songs, but I especially love the “O Holy Night” versions done by Josh Groban and Mariah Carey. It is easy to listen to both of these and remember the real reason we celebrate this season.
No. 1 — “Silent Night” written by Franz Gruber in 1816. This song absolutely means Christmas to me, and makes me have chills when I hear it done well. Some of my favorite renditions are done by Elvis Presley, Amy Grant, Neil Diamond and Nat King Cole.
This is just my list and I thought it would be fun to do. Most likely, I’ll have one of these songs on my mind well past the big day. There is a good chance that I might be heard singing one of them too. Cover your ears, or better yet, feel free to join in.