Favorite Christmas Music

For me, one of the best things about the Christmas season is the music. I love the big choir church hymns and the latest rocker versions. Now I do have my favorites, several from years ago, and a few more recently. They all succeed in one very important thing: pointing to Christ, reminding me He’s the reason for our celebration.

I’ve listed my favorites below, and I’d love for you to chime in and tell me which *albums* you must listen to every Christmas season.

The first CD I listen to every year is simply titled: Christmas. It’s a 1988 collaboration of Sparrow artists such as Steve Camp, Michael Card, and Steven Curtis Chapman. My favorite all-time Christmas rendition comes from this album: The Little Drummer Boy by WhiteHeart. Love the vocals, the instrumentals, the energy, the modulation. It all works together amazingly.

Another oldie but goodie is Michael W. Smith‘s album, also titled Christmas (1989, Provident Music Distribution). Again, the vocals and instrumentals work together wondrously creating an emotional experience.

First Call’s An Evening in December (1985, Dayspring/Word) is terrific for anyone who enjoys a Manhattan Transfer style of music with its multitude of parts and wide vocal ranges all done a capella. This album welcomes many guest artists including Wayne Watson and David Meece.

Looking for something newer? Then I  highly recommend Selah‘s Rose of Bethlehem (2002, Curb Records). If you love tight harmonies and emotional deliveries, you’ll love this CD. Every song on this album is superb, but a highlight is Once Upon a Christmas where they’re joined by Dolly Parton who wrote this touching piece.

Still not new enough for you? Then try Casting CrownsPeace on Earth (2008, Reunion). I especially enjoy their powerful version of I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day.

Newer Yet? Well, I just picked up Jeremy Camp‘s Christmas:God With Us (2012, bec) album this fall. It’s too soon for it to become a favorite, but you never know!

Comments 8

  1. I love the old Christmas carols and know most of the first verses by heart. I still have some of my mom and dad’s Christmas albums – yes: vinly albums. The best. And their “hi-fi” with great speakers to play them on. However, I haven’t done that for a couple of years. ; ( My favorite “contemporary” Christmas song is “Mary, did you know?” Serious Christmas music will always be my favorite.

  2. Oh, I LOVE the old Christmas hymns too! (And I have several vinyl albums too, but my turntable recently died. 🙁 ) There’s nothing like a Christmas service filled with “O, Come All Ye Faithful” & “Joy to the World” & others accompanied by a pipe organ, brass, and a mass choir. To me, that’s a foretaste of heaven.

  3. My favorite Christmas song ever is “White Christmas” by Bing Crosby. Anything by Bing is wonderful. I’ve also recently discovered Straight No Chaser’s Christmas album Christmas Cheers. It’s an a Capella men’s group, and the music is phenomenal, and some of the songs are super funny, like their rendition of “12 Days of Christmas”. Trans Siberian Orchestra is also great for Christmas music. Another favorite song is “His Favorite Christmas Story” by Capital Lights. BarlowGirl has a wonderful Christmas album as well.

  4. Wow! Where to begin with favorite Christmas songs. I love Christmas music so much, I listen to it at work all year long. Of course, I love all the old familiar carols, and my favorite is actually “Oh Come All Ye Faithful.” The traditional carols always give me goosebumps; they are so glorious. Of the newer pieces, I love “Do You Hear What I Hear?” and “Breath of Heaven” and “Little Drummer Boy.” Of course some of it is the person or group, so my current favorite group is Mannheim Steamroller. Although, I also love some of the renditions of music done by Transiberian Orchestra, especially “Christmas Canon” and “Christmas in Sarejevo.”

    1. Oh, all great selections, Debbie! Those are all on my must-listen-to list. And those old carols give me goosebumps too. Isn’t it hard to sing or listen to Oh, Come All Ye Faithful with tears? It’s such a powerful hymn.

      Hope you have a joy filled Christmas!

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