The Christmas Playlist That Doesn't Suck (2022)
I’ve scoured Soundcloud to find the best Christmas music I could find. It’s chock full of Christmas favourites that are guaranteed to:
- Bring Christmas cheer
- Not suck
This year I thought I’d write up my song choices and explain some of them. In particular, number 21 is special. If you’re interested, you can skip to the writeup after you hit play.
My 2022 playlist writeup
- First up is a wonderful choral/orchestral version of O Come All Ye Faithful. I’ve included a Dan Forrest arrangement of this song in 2016. It reminds me a little of Murray Gold’s arrangement of the Doctor Who theme for Tennant, has this fast frantic chase in it. It’s good.
- I’ve never included the Hallelujah Chorus in a Christmas playlist for some reason. It’s never been “Christmassy” - but it is right? As much as any of these carols deserve to be here? This Kazoo version by the CSUF Kazoo Ensemble made Mil laugh.
- I like to include new songs or songs that aren’t the usual staples every year. This year I have This Is Not A Christmas Song by NEFFEX. It’s punky. I like it.
- Deck the Halls by Cimorelli is another choral carol, in a neat arrangement.
- This 8-bit version of Little Drummer Boy by Francisco Ramírez kicks off with the original Donkey Kong beat from my childhood, and if I’m not including an 8-bit track for myself regujarly, why am I even doing this?
- I’ve included I Want a Hippopotamus For Christmas in some version almost ever year since I first heard it. Would you believe I never heard this song until I made the 2013 playlist? It has the same energy as I Saw Mummy Kissing Santa Clause, but I like it better, and this version by laughingstock embraces the energy.
- There are so many good versions of Carol Of The Bells and I loved it as a kid when I heard it in Home Alone, so there’s a version almost every year. This version by Candice Boyd is brilliant.
- We joke every year that Away In A Manger was the song my eldest would tear up at - which isn’t funny in itself - but that she would actively avoid listening to this song because it did. So I’ve made it my mission to find the sweetest saddest version I can every year, and this version by Phil Wickham fits the bill. Love you A!
- Winter Wonderland is almost always filler. In Australia it doesn’t snow and my family hates carols that imply it’s not Christmas without a blizzard. However this Wes Reeve verson ISN’T the version you know and it’s quite sweet and is completely different song!
- This is a funky acapella version of Angels We Have Heard On High by Just 6. And as I’m listening to it again writing this up, I feel like this is the hidden gem of this playlist hidden back here at number 10. It’s worth the anticipation though.
- I’ve had some truly great versions of Star of Wonder on past playlists and this instrumental one by Craig Hamilton based on Sufjan Steven’s version which I had on my 2013 playlist.
- Silent Night is a staple, and this acapella arrangement by AUGUST 08 is really good.
- This loungy version of Joy To The World by Father Fortuna Music is groovy.
- I try to include a little funk or electroswing or both in every playlist. Wolfgang Lohr puts out something that fits the bill every year, so they’re on these lists a lot. This is a very funky version of Frosty the Snowman with Odd Chap (another of my favourite artists) and Maskarade.
- O Holy Night is my favourite carol hands down. I think it’s almost singlehandedly responsible for reminding me years ago that despite losing my faith I didn’t have to give up on the music and joy of Christmas. Getting to sing along to this once a year makes me happy, and this version by Flower Face is lovely.
- This is another one of those songs that we’ve imported and makes no sense in Aus. But it’s a fun song, and it’s literally called The Christmas Song so it shows up in searches a lot. This bluesy, blousy version by SHEE is catchy.
- Another one that made Mil laugh. This Reliant K version of Good King Wenceslas is dumb and funny.
- I’m a sucker for a duet, and I’ve included a couple over the years. Jason and Courtney Tompkins version of Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas is sweet and well sung.
- Not immune to pop-culture’s influence, and the fact my kids love the Guardians of the Galaxy, I’ve included I Don’t Know What Christmas Is (But Christmastime Is Here) by the Old 97’s from this year’s GotG Christmas Special.
- I’ve included Dance of the Sugar Gum Fairy every year, and this makes less sence as a Christmas song than the Hallelujah Chorus, but so many artists do it, it must be Christmassy somehow. But I like it, and this version by B&B PROJECT is unique and I love it.
- OK, this track is kinda special, in that it was on the first playlist I made in 2012, and it’s the ten year anniversary of my Christmas playlists. It’s a swwet version of We Wish You A Merry Christmas by a really young girl named Olivia. This year I was looking through my past favourites looking to see if anyone had done other songs I could use and found number 22 linked from this account.
- This is Olivia again years later at 12 singing Ave Maria and it’s phenominal. Such a mindblowing change. What a great way to wrap out ten years of Christmas playlists!
This is also the first year I’m not including Jingle Bells! 10 years seems like as good a time as any to skip it, but I’ve included it in every other playlist. Go take a look at them too!
The whole Christmas Playlist That Doesn’t Suck (2022) is up on Soundcloud right now, go have a listen!
Thank you to all the artists who have shared their Christmas songs on SoundCloud for the rest of us!