Every year, I make my friends and colleagues at work a holiday music sampler. Here is this year's mix:
I. There’s a Party Goin’ On
The temperatures outside may be dropping, but the mercury inside is rising faster than you can say “what happened to all the spiked egg nog?”. That’s right, the joint is jumping, and the music matches the mood. We’ve got hip, we’ve got blues, we’ve got jazz, we’ve got something that sounds like “Peter Gunn meets The Nutcracker,” and we’ve got some classic pop from years past.
“Nite Before A Hip Christmas,” Frank Evans & Santa’s Helpers
“Christmas Spirit,” Julia Lee
“Please Come Home for Christmas,” Charles Brown
“Santa Claus is Comin’ To Town,” Dave Brubeck Quartet
“Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas,” Bela Fleck & The Flecktones
“Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy,” Hal Mooney
“It’s Christmas,” Marvin & Johnny
“This Christmas,” Donny Hathaway
II. Grab Your Partner and Get Out on the Floor
We’re now heading down to the southern part of the country, and at this here Christmas party, you just might hear someone makin’ fun of those city slickers having fun in their high-rise Manhattan apartments. Santa Claus? Well, he ain’t the only one wearing a funny hat and boots at this one.
“Holly Jolly Christmas,” Old 97s
“Papa Noel,” Brenda Lee
“Merry Texas Christmas, You All,” Asleep at the Wheel
“Santa Can’t Stay,” Dwight Yoakam
“Santa Bring My Baby Back to Me,” Elvis
III. Tasty Waves and Cool Presents
You know, they also celebrate Christmas in places where you’re just as likely to find a gnarly wave as you are a snowman with carrot nose and top hat. In those places, this just might be what they’re listening to.
“Sleigh Ride,” The Ventures
“God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen,” Los Straitjackets
“Champagne of Christmas,” Fleshtones
IV. Sometimes Happy, Sometimes Melancholy
We’ve got a little of both in this section.
“Christmas (Baby Please Come Home),” Death Cab for Cutie
“Christmas is Coming Soon,” Blitzen Trapper
“That Was the Worst Christmas Ever!,” Sufjan Stevens
“Christmas in Paradise,” Mary Gauthier
“It’s A Big Country,” Davitt Sigerson
V. Back to the Party…
“Merry Christmas Baby,” Ike and Tina Turner
“It’s Christmas (A Time for Giving),” Screamin’ Jay Hawkins