Best Non-Obvious Christmas Music Playlist (Full List)

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December 18, 2012 by Jay Helms

In my quest to find cool, overlooked Christmas music, I have finally come up with a decent list of songs that are not necessarily picked first for Christmas Holiday music playlists. I’d love to hear some of your recommendations. If you share some, I’ll put them in their own list and post it.

Winter Snow by Audrey Assad and Chris Tomlin – wow. wow. total surprise of a song…as terrific a song as has been written for Christmas since Silent Night was written in 1816. very special song…”you could have come like a hurricane…a forest fire…but you came like a winter snow…Falling…from the sky…in the night…to the earth below”

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Million Voices (Theme from Hotel Rwanda) by Wyclef Jean – This is a deep, profound expression of love. It reflects beautifully Jesus’ heart for each person he has seen fit to give life, as evidenced in literally pouring out his life for all of us. why is this on a Christmas music list? because it song reminds me that Jesus invites me to be just like him…He came to earth on a mission to bring Heaven to earth in the lives of those who have experienced true darkness. I was one, myself, until I met Him.

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Miracle by Matisyahu – Hannukah is a holiday that originated before the time of Jesus. this is an underrated holiday, with a lot of heart and soul. Matisyahu’s song is far and away one of the coolest holiday songs of any kind, ever.

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Bring a Torch, Jeanette, Isabella by Robert Shaw Chorale – love the tune, the story that the lyrics tell, as well as the style and details of the orchestra music.

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Cold December Night by Michael Buble – “‘Cause I’m older now, but I’m not done hoping.” word.

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Christmas Holiday by Andy Williams – another little gem lost behind other famous songs sung by Mr. Williams.

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Sleigh Ride by Anton Schwartz – perfect jazz dinner party music

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Others from Previous Posts

Christmas Time All Over the World by Sammy Davis – old school Christmas music at it’s best.

Christmas This Year by Tobymac with Leigh Nash – look for tobymac’s performance of this one on the Disney Christmas Day Parade Show on ABC.
it’s Leigh Nash’s part that is just awesome in this one…”holy, holy, holy, God is coming near…” my 5 year old son has this one memorized, every word…

Christmas Day – Michael W. Smith – starts kinda slow and sappy for me, but builds to become a musically full song including a children’s choir

I Believe in Christmas Eve – Smokey Robinson – how did I not hear this one sooner?

Rudolph (John Beltran Remix) – Bing from Christmas Remixed 2

Three songs from the Album “‘Tis the Season to be Gotee Too”
Have Your Self a Merry Little Christmas by Capital Kings – a pop/dance remix that is reminiscent of Owl City or the music on the Wreck-It Ralph soundtrack.
Silent Night/O Come Let Us Adore Him by Finding Favou
Carol of the Bells by Capital Kings – sounds like “Bug Hunt” from Wreck-It Ralph

O Come All Ye Faithful by Sarah Kelly – ok, this gal can sing. plus, there are nifty & creative drums and choruses on this one… I can imagine a parade of people marching to encounter to literally “adore Him” with this as the parade song…

God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen by Knightsbridge – don’t judge it til you hear it yourself. tremendous blend of dobro, mandolin, and violin as well as a non-twangy banjo. about as cool a bluegrass tune as you’ll hear. simply excellent.

Birth of Love by SuperHeRose – hip hop/ pop. we dance to this one, too, in our household. To the left, to the left, to the left…to the right…

She was only 13…Young with a big dream
Then, unexpectedly, things would never be the same
Love was born, and she held a gift God made
Born for redemption’s sake
Earth was void ’til He came…Love was born a… love was born a King

I’ve Got My Love to Keep Me Warm (Psapp’s Lady Remix) – Les Brown, from Merry Mixmas – one of the best remixes I have heard of an old school tune, feels like it is the song the original musician/writer intended. a sophisticated, chill tune.

Come On Ring Those Bells by Kristin Chenowith – not a huge country fan, but I like bells, the Glenn Campbell-style guitar, and some of the lyrics in this one.

Because It’s Christmas by Sidewalk Prophets – a savvy tune…a very decent pop rock tune for any season that manages to have a great Christmas vibe.

Because it’s Christmas, Love is filling the air
Because it’s Christmas, A thrill of hope is everywhere
So let the music play, Let your worry melt away
Because it’s Christmas

And if you listen close, The angels cry
The whole world sings the reason why…
Our Savior’s born tonight
It’s Christmas……… Fa la la la la

Sleigh Ride by The Ronettes – there are lots of versions of Sleigh Ride out there. This 60’s classic gets overlooked.

I’ve Got My Love to Keep Me Warm by Tony Bennett – crisp, fresh version of a classic.

There’s No Christmas Like a Home Christmas by Perry Como – no, this is not “There’s no place like home for the holidays”. This is a once-popular-now-lost song tucked away in the corner of Perry’s Christmas album, overlooked in favor of the more famous song “Home for the Holidays”.

Happy Holiday (Beef Wellington Remix) by Bing Crosby – Why was he called “Bing”? well, you’d go by the name Bing, too, if your name was Harry Lillis Crosby and you had a show career. this one is a fun remix with a strong beat and lots of high hat cymbals and snare.

Christmas in Harlem by Kanye West – hip hop meets chill meets Christmas. I like the piano and the slow beat.

“Medley of Scottish Reels” from Rose & Thistle: English and Scottish Music from The Christmas Revels – our family dances to this one first thing Christmas morning…the birth of the Light of the World is worth dancing for.

Let It Snow by Sam Bush – a hip bluegrass tune
Jingle Bells by Earl Scruggs – another great bluegrass tune

Buon Natale by Nat King Cole – overlooked because he’s got so many other fantastic Christmas songs. This one’s a real gem.

Another Christmas Song by Stephen Colbert – just plain fun.
Ho! It’s another Christmas song, Whoa!
Get ready brother for another Christmas song
They play for a month, Ad infinitum
One day it struck me someone must write ‘em
So! It’s another Christmas song

Santa clause singing on naughty snow, Reindeer ringing in the mistletoe
The manger’s on fire, The holly’s a-glow, Hear the baby Jesus cryin’ ho ho ho

Hey! It’s another Christmas song , Yay!
Another oft’ returning, Royalty earning Christmas song
I’ve got plenty more so go buy a modem
Log on to iTunes and pay to download ‘em
Pay! For another Christmas song

Chestnuts glisten on a silent night, Sleigh-bells kissing by candle light
The tree is frozen, the winter’s bright
Who’d have thought the wise men look so white (because they were not likely Caucasian)…

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4 thoughts on “Best Non-Obvious Christmas Music Playlist (Full List)

  1. annewoodman says:

    I’ll have to look into some of these, Jay. I love Wyclef Jean! I haven’t heard Winter Snow. I’ll keep this list and refer back to it.

  2. […] Last year I put together this list of non-obvious Christmas music. […]

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