I’ve done a list of unique Christmas songs that aren’t overplayed every year (which you can find here), but that doesn’t mean you should throw out all the classics. I’ve covered a wide range of artists on this list that sing some of the best versions of Christmas classics, and I’ve thrown in a few original songs that have become classics. So if you’re more into having a traditional Christmas, you’ll probably really enjoy these Christmas songs:
White Christmas by Bing Crosby
I put this song first because it is the most obvious choice. Sure it gets overplayed on the radio and in Christmas movies, but that’s because it is the quintessential Christmas song, and Bing does such a wonderful job of singing it.
Merry Christmas, Baby by Otis Redding
If you’re looking for an alternative version of ‘White Christmas’, I would recommend Otis Redding’s unique take on the song. His take on this Christmas tune is also pretty amazing. The man has such a soulful voice that it almost brings you tears, and it’s such a shame that he died so young.
Winter Wonderland by Aretha Franklin
Winter Wonderland is one of my Christmas favorites, and Aretha gives it that special feminine touch in this version of the song. It’s an upbeat Christmas tune that’s perfect for a snowy winter’s day.
Let it Snow! Let it Snow! Let it Snow! by Dean Martin
This is another perfect song for a winter’s day. Dean Martin is one of the greatest crooners of all time, and his smooth voice makes this fun melody even more enjoyable.
Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas by Frank Sinatra
You can’t go through Christmas time without hearing this song, and you’ve got to have at least one Sinatra Christmas tune on your play list.
The Christmas Song by Nat King Cole
Nat King Cole is another essential Christmas song crooner, and I love his version of one of the greatest Christmas songs that’s so aptly named. I’ve never had a roasted chestnut, but this song always makes me want to try one.
Run Rudolph Run by Chuck Berry
This is one of the greatest original Christmas songs by an artist, and it makes sense that musical genius Chuck Berry was the one to come up with it. It’s just an incredibly fun song, and I never get tired of listening to Chuck Berry.
Pretty Paper by Roy Orbison
It’s hard to believe that Roy Orbison was once told that he had a horrible voice and would never make it in the music industry. In this song, his voice will break your heart. It’s a sad song, but a must-have on your Christmas playlist.
Blue Christmas by Elvis
And here’s another man whose voice could break your heart. If you’re missing someone this Christmas season, you’ve got to have this song on your playlist. It may be hard enjoying the holidays without that special someone, but Elvis’ voice will soothe your soul.
Santa Baby by Eartha Kitt
No, it’s not Marilyn Monroe singing this song, and I prefer the original recording done by Eartha to Madonna’s. I know it annoys a lot of people, but I think the song is unique and will really make you feel like vamping up your holiday look, cheesecake style.
Happy Christmas by John Lennon
It’s too bad we won’t all be singing the chorus of this song this year, but we can all be hopeful. The beginning of the song is great, as well, for asking a question that makes many of us feel ashamed of ourselves. It’s a wonderful song by a wonderful greatly missed artist that this world could really use right now.
Dance of the Sugar-Plum Fairy
This is my favorite music from the Nutcracker Suite. It just has a magical, mystical feel to it, and it’s a very beautiful instrumental piece.
The great thing about the songs on this list is that anyone can enjoy them, since they don’t really focus on the religious side of Christmas (other than mentioning the word “Christmas”). Some of them may get a little too much radio play, but it’s only because these Christmas songs are the greatest, and the holiday season wouldn’t be the same without them.