By Abby Gray, ’18
A ranking of my top ten favorite Christmas albums:
10. Glee’s “The Music, The Christmas Album (Volumes 1-3)”
Just making it to my top ten, the three albums present a cheery sound that exemplifies in song the inner joy and excitement felt when the best of the season begins to sprout up in the form of twinkly lights and 50 percent off signs plastered on every frosty store window. Maybe the voices of high schoolers, who are actually adult actors, happily covering holiday tunes reminds me of my own love of belting out Christmas songs in the car, although I myself have no vocal talent.
Favorite Track: “Baby it’s Cold Outside”
9. Kelly Clarkson’s “Wrapped in Red”
Coming in at number nine, Clarkson’s album combines traditional holiday music with a smooth, calming yet still pop-ish sound. The album has a hint of jazz which keeps things interesting and fresh, and of course we can’t forget the powerhouse vocals Clarkson brings to the table in every song she’s ever released, moving most to stop, listen and enjoy. And boy, her Christmas album is no exception.
Favorite Track: “Every Christmas”
8. Boyz 2 Men’s “Christmas Interpretations”
What a great album. For all classic R&B fans, or anyone who enjoys relaxed, chilled music– basically slowed down hip hop, this album is for you. The melodies and tones showcased in this seasonal celebration in song are amazingly passionate, romantic and powerful- really just Boyz 2 Men’s usual style, holiday edition.
Favorite Track: “Who Would Have Thought”
7. “Elvis’ Christmas Album”
This is quite possibly the most famous classic Christmas album, and is actually the best-selling one of all time. With a person as idolized as Elvis, it is no shock the album has been purchased so many times, and I believe this is credited to catchiness and talent just as much as the adoration of Elvis’ fans. His iconic and easily recognizable voice booms throughout the album and defines it as one of the greats; a holiday album adored by many with no chance of dying out any time soon.
Favorite Track: “Blue Christmas”
6. Justin Bieber’s “Under the Mistletoe”
Let’s be honest, you knew it was coming. I myself have adored JB since the fifth grade, and I admit, have listened to this album even in summer. No matter how many haters try to discredit his voice, I will believe until my dying day that he is talented– and this holiday album is a beautiful showcase of it. Not only that, but the album has amazing features such as Boyz 2 Men and Mariah Carey, who first requested that Bieber cover her classic, “All I Want for Christmas is You”.
Favorite Track: “Christmas Love”
5. “Jackson 5 Christmas Album”
Honestly, I love the Jackson 5 whenever and wherever, and their holiday album is no exception. Listening to this album reminds me of sitting around the fire with my family, or dancing around the house to Christmas music with my mom when I was little. Its iconic upbeat, fun and childish sound captures the true joyful spirit of the holidays, making it a family album just as “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” is a family movie.
Favorite Track: “Santa Claus is Coming to Town”
4. Destiney’s Child’s, “8 Days of Christmas”
Two words. Queen B. How could I leave out, or even place below the top five, the work of a group or more so an individual, that presents to us exemplary performance, style and power like none other. This album turns Beyoncé all holiday, and basically makes me want to put on a Santa hat, throw red and green glitter everywhere and do a happy dance while stuffing my face with Christmas cookies.
Favorite Track: “8 Days of Christmas”
3. Mariah Carey’s, “Merry Christmas”
Filled with classics, Carey’s album is the best mix of soulful Christmas covers and upbeat bops, such as her very famous “All I Want for Christmas is You”. This album is perfect if you’re looking for a balance between holiday love ballads and traditional Christmas songs covered with a peaceful, beautiful simplicity.
Favorite Track: “All I Want for Christmas is You” (of course)
2. Pentatonix “That’s Christmas to Me”
After winning the vocal competition show, “The Sing-Off”, this singing group blew up, and especially because of their holiday music. The acapella group’s album “That’s Christmas to Me” is just plain impressive. I didn’t listen to a single song I didn’t enjoy or wasn’t amazed by. The talent in this group is explosive, and the beauty and strength of their acapella style perfectly delivers the most elegant, impactful Christmas songs. I could listen to this album for hours.
Favorite Track: “Silent Night”
1. “Michael Bublé Christmas”
This is the powerhouse of all holiday albums. Bublé’s voice closely resembles Frank Sinatra and his silky, beautiful take on the best selection of holiday songs compiles to create an album probably listened to by angels in Heaven on Christmas day. I will never be sick of his incredibly soothing, vintage voice that sounds like it was plucked straight from the 1950’s but with higher quality recording. This album is like getting a Christmas present every time I listen to it. I can’t stress enough my love for Bublé’s polished, serene sound presented in my favorite holiday album of all time.
Favorite Track: “Silver Bells” (on the deluxe special edition album)