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December 16, 2014

MLT X: Christmas Memories & Favorites

Hmm, wonder what we're covering today? ;) I've already mentioned before how I'm not a massive fan of Christmas (what??) and a large part of that is because it feels like there are about 20 Christmas songs that everyone records--and we get to hear every year--over and over and over. And I'm all for originality and depth in music, along with some variety.

So I decided to finally round up the Christmas music I do like in an attempt to make this hard season a bit happier. And the following has certainly been nice to listen to while wrapping gifts--and I've even found a couple new favorites this year!

As far as whole albums, these are my top picks:

Christmas Album Favorites

Scotty McCreery || This pick really floors me. I never voted for Scotty on American Idol and have never bought another song of his. But I tried out Country Christmas Radio on Pandora and liked what I heard every time he came on, to the point that I decided I needed the whole album. And I pretty much love it--I'm not sure why, but I'll take it! I'll get into specifics below.

Andrea Bocelli || I love Andrea. And this album is just as good as anything else he does.

Michael W. Smith || There is a definite trend in my favorite Christmas music: the songs/albums are frequently by artists I'm not normally a fan of. I've never loved Michael W. Smith, but his Christmas albums are always pretty amazing, and this one is my favorite. He definitely wins for originality. If you want to know how to make a Christmas album, look to him for the perfect example. (We actually used "Song for the King" as the Processional in our wedding, which was in May--it didn't sound Christmasy at all on its own.)

Mariah Carey || Again, not a fan of Mariah Carey (especially after seeing her be a judge on Idol...), but this album is awesome. Especially "Joy to the World"--it is amazing.

The Nutcracker || Yep, love the Nutcracker. See, I love classical music too!

Antique Music Box Christmas || I think I picked this out at Walmart or Big Lots when I was about 10. You know, back when you just bought music without listening first. And I loved it. Warning: don't listen to it if you really need to stay awake. ;)

Gaither Homecoming: Christmas: A Time for Joy || Okay, this one needs an explanation. We started watching this what feels like all the time back when I was like 14. I hadn't watched it in years and found the CD on iTunes recently. And decided I needed it because it makes me happy. :) So, yeah, while this album isn't really overflowing with amazing works of musical brilliance or anything, it definitely makes me smile, and that makes it worth every penny. ;)

Now specifics:

This is definitely my favorite song on the Gaither album above. Love it.

And this song from Scotty McCreery's album. Oh my.

Now, back as far as I can remember, we would listen to these Christmas tapes (I'm thinking by Reader's Digest) and these next three songs were on there. So just hearing them makes me feel like I'm about 4 again. ;) "Hard Candy Christmas" is still a hit in my family...

I mentioned way back when that Daniel and I love this song and the story of him tracking it down for me. As a writer, I do think the words could be better in some places... but it's so our song. :D

Once again, not a Rebecca St. James fan at all, but this song is a long-standing favorite of mine.

I love this song, and Sissel's is my favorite version. And it is not on iTunes, which makes me sad. If you find it, let me know!

A more recent addition to my favorites list:

And my newest favorite. As I've mentioned before, I loved the original version Michael W. Smith recorded back in like 2000, and now this version is just as amazing in a different way. And I think it's my most favorite Christmas song ever.

So! What are your favorite Christmas songs or albums?
Are any of these your favorites too?
And am I the only one tired of the same old, same old?

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