This is the first year I can remember really grooving on Christmas songs. I have no idea why. So why not put together a Christmas playlist that I can listen to on one of my runs?
In reverse order, with my most favoritest, runworthy, Christmassy song at the very bottom:
12. “I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus” – The Jackson 5
Oh, Michael. Too bad he grew up. That sadness aside, this is a really sweet and nostalgic Christmas song. MJ’s voice sounds like a beautiful, clear bell, and the disco beat is infectious.
11. “Last Christmas” – Wham!
I’m so glad I didn’t forget the exclamation point in the band’s name! This song reminds me of being in the fifth grade, so listening to this song as an adult immediately takes me back to that time in my life. And who wouldn’t want to relive the devastating awkwardness of that age? Plus, this video is the ultimate 80s experience. I love the hair and the clothes and the eyewear. And I’m so glad to see someone else uses as many tinsel garlands on their tree as I do!
10. “Christmas Wrapping” – The Waitresses
This is how I feel the majority of the holiday season.
9. “So this Is Christmas” – John Lennon
Not much to say about this one. Not much of a running song, but it’s a good song with a good message.
8. “Fairytale of New York” – The Pogues
Happy Christmas, you arsehole. I think there’s cigarette smoke in every frame of this video.
7. “Do They Know It’s Christmas” – Band Aid
This song wins the award for the best sounding philanthropic group song of the 80’s (take that, “We Are the World”). Also, the award for the most condescending. But I still like it because, again, it reminds me of the 5th grade. Also, because Duran Duran.
6. “River” – Joni Mitchell
Such a beautiful, sad song. Maybe not the best for running, unless you’re doing one of those morose, contemplative runs. Or you really want to slow your pace. And then stop on the side of the road or trail to wipe away your tears.
5. “Baby It’s Cold Outside” – Margaret Whiting and Johnny Mercer
“No means no” unless it’s a holiday song. I try to overlook that by reveling in the perfect layering of voices and old fashioned aspects like “maybe a cigarette more.” (Full disclosure: this is a karaoke favorite of mine.)
4. “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)” – Darlene Love
Awesome 60s girl group, Wall of Sound Christmas song. Darlene Love’s voice is so powerful that it makes me feel unstoppable… which doesn’t really match the lyrics of the song, but whatever.
3. “The Christmas Song (Don’t Be Late)” – Alvin and the Chipmunks
Mock me if you will, but I love this song. It’s sweet and innocent and perfectly portrays a young (non-religious) kid’s perception of Christmas. Plus there was a lot of yelling in my house when I was growing up, so I relate to Alvin and the boys. Kidding.
2. “Mele Kalikimaka” – Bing Crosby
Nothing says “Merry Christmas” like a Haole singing in Hawaiian. But really, Christmas isn’t Christmas without Bing Crosby singing about it. This song is super cheesy and nostalgic. It reminds me of a time when everything looked like it was shot in Technicolor.
1. “All I Want for Christmas Is You.” – Mariah Carey
I know, I know. I’m generally not a fan of Mariah. She’s cray-cray. But this is a fantastic Christmas song–it puts me in a happy, festive mood, and it makes me want to dance like one of the characters in the Charlie Brown specials. And isn’t that how everyone should feel around the holidays?
What’s YOUR favorite Christmas or holiday song?