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December 23, 2015

Your New Favorite Festive Christmas Playlist. {Warning: You Just Might Rock Out a little bit}

Flickr/Sam Howzit

‘Tis the season.

Well, no matter what the season—any time is a good time for music. But I’ve got to say, the tunes are one of my favorite things about the holiday season.

Everyone has their favorites, whether it’s a traditional tune or a modern ditty—or perhaps an updated cover version of a classic. But let’s be honest—some of those old fashioned Christmas carols can sometimes be a a bit dated, cliché or even—er, well—boring.

I’m not saying there’s not a time and a place for those slow-jams or holiday ballads—but, I like to mix things up a bit. So amidst the plethora of traditional, holiday music—the stuff we hear in shopping malls or muzak versions of in elevators—I’d like to offer a Christmas playlist with a bit of a twist.

Some holiday favorites that you may not hear on the radio. (And perhaps some that you will, I’m not trying to get über obscure here. Just trying to offer up something a little different—a little festive. Something that just might make you want to tap your foot or sway in your seat. or maybe even rock out to a little bit.

So below, you’ll find a collection of some fun, holiday ditties—a little bit of rock, a little bit of punk, a little bit of indie-pop and a little sprinkling of soul.

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Let’s kick things off with a little Joan Jett, shall we? Ba-rum-puh-pum-pum…

Let’s follow-up with some Joey Ramone—you can never really go wrong with the Ramones, can ya?

Here is a funny one that packs a punch. And I’m not gonna lie—I’ve been a Cyndi Lauper fan since I was f*cking four years old. Oh, and the Hives are kinda cool too… (There’s a few f-ombs in this jam, but it’s no big deal, mom, really. Just enjoy the music.)

Here’s a classic jam—it’s one of my all-time favorite Christmas tunes, so i had to find a spot for it. So much soul and emotion in her voice—turn the volume up to 11 and shake your booty:

And of course, no holiday playlist would be complete without some rendition of this song. Well, at least for me—I’m a southern-cali girl, so “Oi to the World!” and Christmas go hand in hand. It’s a classic Vandals song originally, and the Vandals hail from Huntington Beach, California. But after much mental back-n-forth, I’ve opted to include the No Doubt (another O.C. band) cover, because damn, those horns really add a sweet, subtle Christmas-y feeling to the tune. Which do you prefer?

And because No Doubt takes my musical mind back to the 90s, it seems like a good time to slip in a little “O Holy Night” by Weezer. Remember the Christmas CD? It came in a little cardboard slipcase, right?  =w=

And as long as we’re gettin’ a lil emo…here’s some Yeah Yeah Yeah’s moody, melodic, yummy goodness:

Okay, let’s kick things back a notch—this might be the most upbeat, cheerful Belle & Sebastian track I’ve ever heard:

As long as we’re keeping things fun and light, here is an effing-good-time jam from The Vindictives. ***Warning folks—this song has profanity, adult language—all the offensive things. So don’t listen if you don’t dig that.

Hee hee. Speaking of funny—have you seen the Bill Murray Christmas special? It’s starts off a bit slow, but it’s quite a quirky bit of fun, with music! Did you know Murray can sing? Talented guy, that one. Here’s a little taste—a duet with Miley Cyrus. That girl has got some pipes!

They also do a cover of the Pogues “Fairytale of New York” on the Christmas special. (Look closely—you might recognize Jenny Lewis from Rilo Kiley and the Postal Service or  Jason Schwartzman from Phantom Planet or Paul Shaffer, the piano guy from Letterman.)

Here’s the original, by the Pogues:

If you’re not swinging a pint in your hand back and forth yet, you should be…

Time to throw in a little nostalgia—hey, I’m a child of the 80s and I dig me some new wave pop:

Hey, at least it wasn’t the Wham song. (Which I also love, but I’m not gonna include here.) I’m not even gonna embed the Jimmy Eat World version, I’ll just link to it.

Moving right along—here’s Bad Religion doing “Hark the Herald Angels.”

And Voodoo Glowskulls doing “Feliz Navidad”:

**Updated, to squeeze in one more!

This Dropkick Murphys track comes to us via my co-worker and ele-friend Renée Picard:

“Oh Come All Ye Faithful”—the Twisted Sister rendition:

And we’ll wrap things up with a little Otis:

I hope you enjoyed and maybe found something new you can bob yer head to.  What are some of your favorites? Don’t be shy—share in the comments!

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***Bonus tracks: 

The audio quality isn’t great, but it’s Green Day and awesome. #greendayporvida  Merry Christmas!

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***And one more update: Apparently Billie Joe & company heard about the low-quality on the audio of the above recording—so Green Day has just released a new holiday jam called, “Xmas Time of the Year.”  Fancy that, eh?  (wink)

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Author: Yoli Ramazzina

Photo: Flickr/Sam Howzit

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