From the first of December I like to dig out my Christmas CDs and play them almost continuously up until ( and definitely including! ) Christmas Day. I love the traditional carols but over the years I've collected a real eclectic mix of music.
The CD that I play again and again, is James Taylor At Christmas. I love his voice and this is a great collection of jolly and some melancholy tunes, he does a great cover of Joni Mitchell's "River" and a fun rendition of "Baby It's Cold Outside" with Natalie Cole. This is such a mellow album, it makes really effective background music for Christmas dinner and other festive occasions.
Last year I bought Carol King's "A Christmas Carole" which is a very pleasant collection of old and new, there are some non-traditional tunes on the album that make a nice change to the usual Christmas songs. Similarly Enya's "And Winter Came.." mixes old and new, I love her version of "Oh Come Oh Come Emmanuel", it is my favourite Christmas carol of all.
I do love Zooey Deschanel and her album with M Ward "A Very She & Him Christmas" is a delightful indie take on Christmas, really joyful. Tracey Thorn's recent release "Tinsel And Lights" is slightly more melancholy ( it includes an obligatory cover of "River"!) but I really like her voice from Everything But The Girl days and this cd is a great addition to my Christmas collection.
Finally, I caved in this year after complaints from everyone at my birthday tea party about my James Taylor overkill, and I bought the Michael Buble Christmas cd. I like his voice but find him incredibly cheesy, however, as Christmas is the season of cheese, this album does the job!
My absolute favourite Christmas songs are Greg Lake's "I Believe In Father Christmas" and "Christmas Wrapping" by The Waitresses. Which songs make your Christmas special?