A couple of years ago I posted an entry that included all my favorite Christmas Songs for 2011. Most of the ones I liked then I still like this year, but there are a few changes. So I have decided once again to list my favorites, for this year, and include links for you to listen. In reverse order, they are...
10. Winter Light
Winter Light, sung by Linda Ronstadt, is not strictly a Christmas song but it does evoke a melancholy feeling of winter. This was the theme song for the hauntingly beautiful children's movie, Secret Garden.
9. Song for a Winter's Night
Also not technically a Christmas song (but then neither are Jingle Bells, Let it Snow, and Winter Wonderland) this song gets played more around the holidays because it is a winter song and evokes a melancholy feeling. I actually prefer Sarah McLachlan's version, but two other of her songs are featured in this so I've included the original Gordon Lightfoot version.
8. Skaters' Waltz
Composed in 1882 by Émile Waldteufel, the Skaters' Waltz was inspired by a rink of skaters in Paris. It, also, is not a Christmas song, but it certainly evokes the holiday spirit.
7. The Christmas Song
Subtitled, Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire, this song is another classic from Mel Torme that many people have recorded and performed since. Its name says Christmas, and it certainly evokes the feeling.
6. Promises to Keep
By the Trans Siberian Orchestra this song really hits you over the head with its haunting, melancholy holiday tune. It's beautiful.
5. Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas
This song was written by Hugh Martin and Ralph Blane for the movie, "Meet Me in St. Louis" in 1944. It was first performed by Judy Garland who sang the worst rendition of all time. I'm partial to this Sarah McLachlan version.
4. All Through the Night
This song was turned into a Christmas song by Olivia Newton-John. It's a lovely melody that deserves to be performed at Christmas.
3. Christmas Canon
This is another one by the Trans Siberian Orchestra. It takes Pachelbel's Canon in D and puts Christmas lyrics to it but beautifully maintains the contrapuntal style that makes it a canon.
2. Ding Dong Merrily on High
Blackmore's Night takes this traditional Christmas hymn and turns it into a contrapuntal masterpiece. Just beautiful.
1. Christmas Time is Here
Performed by Vince Guraldi for "A Charlie Brown Christmas" in 1965, both his instrumental version and several vocal versions have gone on to become classic at Christmas. I'm very partial to Sarah McLachlan's version.