One of my favorite things about Christmas is the music. I remember as a child starting the Christmas music the day after Thanksgiving on the big stereo in the living room and being so sad when we had to pack it away with all the Christmas decorations after Christmas was over. I, as many of you, get so annoyed with the "Lite" stations that play Christmas music from now until the Christmas day. It's not that I hate the idea, I just wonder why they have the same 15 songs on repeat for 6 weeks. Seriously, there is amazing Christmas music out there and they pick the same songs over and over and over that have little to no feeling to them. I mean, how many times can you really hear Feliz Navidad or Rockin around the Christmas Tree without wanting to vomit just a little??
So in honor of my love of Christmas music, I'd like to shar with you some of my favorite CDs and some of my favorite songs off of each CD. I'd love to hear your suggestions as well, as I tend to buy at least 1 or 2 new Christmas CDs each year. Trust me, I have quite the collection!!
B does not like Manheim, and the traditionalist in me understands that. However, the Live cd as well as the four pack are my Christmas time staples. Their version of O Come, O Come Emmanuel is done in Latin and amazing!!! Traditions is all instrumental (as most of their's are) and lovely and so something you'd want to rock a new baby to. On the live cd, there is NOTHING better than their version of God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen. AMAZING. I have actually seen them in concert and it's really a cool thing to watch.
The BEST dinner party cd out there. It's not only for the Christmas season (hence the title "Winter"). If you aren't familiar with Mr. Winston, he does contemporary piano music that is simple, soothing, and non-offensive for anyone. His other cds are great too, but this one shines.
Last year in the blogosphere, a few people mentioned loving Amy Grant's Christmas cds. I couldn't agree more. All of them are wonderful (though I still don't have the newest)- she has such a great voice. Emmanuel, Heirlooms, Hark the Herald Angels Sing, For Unto Us a Child is Born, Emmanuel God with Us, and Breath of Heaven are just a few favorites.
All I Want for Christmas is You........need I say more? I normally dislike "pop" Christmas songs (I'm such a traditionalist), but this cd is great!
My very, very favorite Christmas CD. We even had it on record when I was little! I now have the cd and cannot wait to share it with puddin. S/he is going to adore it just as my brother and I do. This was the cd that was always on in the car as we traveled to Grandmother's house for the holiday and our whole family knew all the words to every song. I think this is the best gift to give a young family as they will treasure it for years. I adore the whole cd so picking a few favorites is hard, but I'll recommend The Peace Carol, A Christmas Wish, and Silent Night. I promise you will not regret this purchase!!
A great, very traditional instrumental Christmas CD. Doesn't the cover just scream preppy ski lodge? I love the bow around the French Horn. A great cd to have on rotation during your Christmas cocktail or dinner party. Kids will love their version of Rudolph!
If you only download one song off this CD, make sure it is When a Child is Born. It's a wonderfully sweet Christmas song. Charlotte is definitely more Operatic than pop or traditional, which some of you may not like, but I think she has a great voice, and she doesn't change the songs to make them weird (which I always appreciate when songs are sung rather than instrumental).
For all you Southerners (or Southern girl wanna-bes) out there that do not already have this, it is a MUST. Tender Tennessee Christmas and Christmas in Dixie are my favorites.
So, those are my favorites. What are yours???