I created a holiday party playlist for a party I went to recently, and as I was listening to it I realized that some of the selections were, shall we say, a little nontraditional. But I stand by my choices. Want to know more about The Best Holiday Playlist Ever Made? Here you go. Just remember, you asked for it.
“All the Way,” by Billie Holiday: Well, the answer’s in the artist’s name. Plus, when is Billie Holiday ever NOT appropriate?
“Angel,” by Sarah McLachlan: I don’t know about you, but at Christmastime, I could sure use the touch of an angel’s arms to lift me out of my strife.
“Believe,” by Lenny Kravitz: “If you want it, you’ve got to believe.” That, my friends, is the epitome of Santa Claus.
“ChamPain,” by Cee Lo Green: Everyone drinks champagne on Christmas, right?
“Clocks,” by Coldplay: Doesn’t the piano sound sort of like Christmas chimes to you? I thought it did. It’s on the list.
“December,” by Collective Soul: Answer’s in the title. I don’t even know what the lyrics of this song are about. I’ve never listened to them.
“Elegantly Wasted,” by INXS: That pretty much describes Christmas dinner for me. Although this year, not for me since I am now almost five months sober. Still a good song.
“Faith,” by George Michael: Really? Do you have to ask? What is Christmas all about if not about faith?
“Fat Bottomed Girls,” by Queen: What do we expect after eating all those holiday cookies?
“Feeling Alright,” by Joe Cocker: Christmas had me feeling alright this year. Add it to the list.
“Figure Me Out,” by Jennings: I discovered this band at an art show on Governor’s Island this year and I really love them so they are on every playlist I have. They qualify for everything right now.
“Fireflies,” by Owl City: The image of millions of fireflies lighting up seems very Christmassy to me. Even if there are not generally fireflies around here during the winter.
“Georgia,” by Cee Lo Green: Someone must travel to Georgia for Christmas. OK, even I’ll admit, that’s a little weak.
“Holiday,” by Madonna: Holiday! Celebrate! What could be more appropriate!
“I Don’t Feel Like Dancin’,” by the Scissor Sisters: I almost always feel like dancing at Christmastime, but that’s kind of the irony of this song, right? It totally makes me want to dance, every time I hear it.
“I Say A Little Prayer,” by Aretha Franklin: This was a special year for me because I actually went to church on Christmas Eve. And I said a little prayer. For you.
“I’ll Take You There,” by the Staple Singers: They’re obviously singing about taking you to the North Pole, right?
“Let it Be,” by the Beatles: Billy really doesn’t get this one. But it’s all about Mother Mary! Come on!
“Love Train,” by the O’Jays: OK, this one is kind of an inside joke for me, since it always reminds me of that one Christmas party where we played this song after lots of people were already pretty drunk, and I remember we conga-lined ourselves into the bedroom where a friend had passed out. She had a chihuahua jumping all over her and a room full of people screaming the words to “Love Train” and she didn’t stir. But did we check for signs of life? No, we just sang louder. Perfect holiday song.
“Low Shoulder,” by Toro Y Moi: This actually came off a best of summer CD, but I thought it was appropriate for Christmas, too. You are free to disagree if you wish.
“Maria,” by Blondie: This song just rocks. Christmas rocks. Works for me.
“Mary Jane’s Last Dance,” by Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers: I have to be honest. I don’t know what the hell this song has to do with Christmas. I just liked it.
“New Soul,” by Yael Naim: Christmas is kind of about birth, right? Maybe rebirth? Hm, maybe not.
“Nightingale,” by Norah Jones: I love bird-watching around the holidays.
“Peel Me A Grape,” by Diana Krall: Honestly, I regret adding this one to the list. I don’t like it and I don’t think it fits with the theme of the season.
“Poker Face,” by Lady Gaga: Tell me this song doesn’t raise the spirit of the season for you. Srsly.
“Recognize,” by The Juice to Make it Happen: “Gonna to take a second to recognize why I need you by my side…” It’s a love song all about Christmas.
“Rehab,” by Amy Winehouse: Try to make me go to rehab? On Christmas? Are you fucking nuts??
“Scenario,” by Tribe Called Quest: Hm. This is another one I’m not sure I can answer. But it’s another kick-ass song that somehow seems to end up on all my playlists. And for good reason.
“Suspicious Minds,” by Elvis Presley: This was actually added by request. Billy wanted an Elvis Christmas song on the list. I hate “Blue Christmas,” so this is what he got.
“Touch of My Hand,” by Britney Spears: The instrumental bits of this one feel very old-world and spiritual to me. I have no idea what the lyrics are about, but they’re irrelevant anyway.
“Umbrella,” by Rihanna feat. Jay-Z: When it snows outside, wouldn’t YOU want an umbrella??
“Unskinny Bop,” by Poison: I kind of debated on this one, but Sharon said that if Die Hard can be classified as a Christmas movie, then “Unskinny Bop” can be a Christmas song. And I think she’s right.
“Wake Up Call,” by Maroon 5: Who doesn’t dream of blowing off the head of their girlfriend’s boyfriend at Christmastime?
“Warm Ways,” by Fleetwood Mac: So many Christmas songs are about being cold and the snow. It’s about time someone came up with a Christmas song about being WARM for a change.
“Your Precious Love,” by Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell: Everyone’s love is precious at Christmastime, and what better song to remind you of that!
If anyone wants the complete list, or for me to burn a CD for them, let me know. This list is as awesome as it sounds.