The Strange Holiday Mix, 2017

This is my idea of an annual tradition: a collection of the holiday-related songs I can stand to have on heavy rotation over the next month or so. As opposed to the traditional playlist of earworms that even the programmers at Muzak must be embarrassed to let loose on the world.

But regardless of your musical tastes, and whatever you are celebrating this time of year, enjoy!

  1. Strangest Christmas Yet – Steve Martin & The Steep Canyon Rangers
  2. Christmas Coming Home (feat. Lennon & Maisy) – Nashville Cast
  3. To Christmas! (The Drinking Song) – Straight No Chaser
  4. Christmas Is the Time – Katharine McPhee
  5. Naughty Naughty Children (Better Start Actin’ Nice) – Grace Potter & The Nocturnals
  6. Santa Claus Is Comin’ (In A Boogie Woogie Choo Choo Train) – The Tractors
  7. Warmer in the Winter (feat. Trombone Shorty) – Lindsey Stirling
  8. Santa Stole Thanksgiving – Jimmy Buffett
  9. Feels Like Christmas (feat. Jana Kramer) – Straight No Chaser
  10. Santa Claus, Santa Claus – Dennis Turner
  11. California Christmastime – Rachel Bloom, Vincent Rodriguez III, and the Crazy Ex-Girlfriend Cast (the video)
  12. Santa Claus Wants Some Lovin’ – Bill Kirchen & Austin de Lone
  13. They Don’t Make Them Like That Anymore – Great Lake Swimmers
  14. Santa Bring My Baby Back (To Me) – Davina & The Vagabonds
  15. Santa, My First Love – Swear And Shake
  16. Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy – Lindsey Stirling
  17. Santa Looked A Lot Like Daddy – The Tractors
  18. Baby Don’t Leave Me (All Alone on Christmas) – Echosmith
  19. Schedryk – Pink Martini
  20. The Way-Too-Early Christmas Song – Paul and Storm

The Strange Holiday Mix 2016 – Best of Edition

I’ve been posting this list for more than 10 years, but this year we seem to have a major shortage of original, interesting, and/or weird holiday songs. Even The Killers, instead of a new, oddball holiday song, dropped a compilation of their past Christmas singles (adding one cover of a holiday classic).

So in that spirit, here is a short list of the best holiday-themed stuff in my music collection, now in heavy rotation for the season. Enjoy.

  1. Christmas is Interesting – Jonathan Coulton
  2. Elf’s Lament – Barenaked Ladies (With Michael Buble)
  3. Christmas in L.A. – The Killers
  4. You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch – Thurl Ravenscroft
  5. I Want an Alien for Christmas – Fountains of Wayne
  6. Merry Christmas from the Family – Robert Keen Earl
  7. Can I Interest You In Hannukah? – Stephen Colbert and Jon Stewart1
  8. Father Christmas – The Kinks
  9. Ain’t No Chimneys In the Projects – Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings2
  10. Yuleman Vs. The Anti-Claus – The Bobs
  11. Snow Globe Christmas – Pink Martini
  12. The Christians and The Pagans – Dar Williams
  13. The Cowboys’ Christmas Ball – The Killers
  14. Come Darkness, Come Light – Mary Chapin Carpenter
  15. Alternate Christmas In Heaven Song – Monty Python
  16. Light One Candle – Peter, Paul & Mary
  17. Fifty Kilowatt Tree – The Bobs
  18. A Great Big Sled – The Killers
  19. Oklahoma Christmas – Kelly Willis & Bruce Robison
  20. Another Christmas Song – Stephen Colbert
  21. The Man in the Santa Suit – Fountains of Wayne
  22. Getting Ready For Christmas Day – Paul Simon
  23. Fruitcake – The Superions

And not really a holiday song, but still one that seems appropriate for some this time of year:

Atheists Don’t Have No Songs – Steve Martin and the Steep Canyon Rangers

The Strange Holiday Mix, 2015

The annual list of holiday songs now in heavy rotation on my phone. Lots of odd, fun stuff, with some sorta traditional music mixed in. Think of it as my own personal war on Christmas. :-)

1. Winter Wonderland / Don’t Worry Be Happy – Pentatonix (feat. Tori Kelly)
2. I Feel It In My Bones – The Killers (feat. Ryan Pardey)
3. Christmas In Heaven – Monty Python’s The Meaning of Life
4. Blue Christmas – Michael Bublé
5. Christmas Wish – She & Him
6. Everyday Is Christmas – Straight No Chaser (feat. Colbie Caillat)
7. (Everybody’s Waitin’ For) The Man With the Bag – Seth MacFarlane
8. The Santa Claus Boogie – The Tractors
9. Santa, Teach Me to Dance – Debbie & The Darnels
10. Yabba-Dabba Yuletide – The Brian Setzer Orchestra
11. More Than I Wished For – Schuyler Fisk
12. Rockin’ Around The Christmas Tree – She & Him
13. Let’s Ditch Christmas – Jeremy Messersmith
14. You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch – Big Bad Voodoo Daddy
15. The Christmas Song – The Raveonettes
16. Dirt Sledding – The Killers (feat. Ryan Pardey & Richard Dreyfuss)
17. Christmas At Ground Zero – Weird Al Yankovic
18. Christmas Blues – Canned Heat

Whatever you are celebrating this time of year, enjoy.

The Strange Holiday Mix 2014

The annual collection of the tracks in heavy rotation on my holiday playlist. A few traditional songs mixed with a heavy dose of the humor needed to cope with this season. Too much cynicism? Maybe, but enjoy.

  1. Christmas In LA – The Killers
  2. Always in the Season – Pomplamoose 
  3. Donde Esta Santa Claus – Straight No Chaser
  4. A Christmas Song – Original Broadway Cast Company of Elf
  5. You’d Better Open Up My Present – Chicago Voice Exchange
  6. Nutmeg – Stephen Colbert & John Legend
  7. Eight Candles (A Song For Hanukkah) – Dave Koz
  8. Children Go Where I Send Thee – Nick Lowe
  9. Text Me Merry Christmas – Straight No Chaser & Kristen Bell
  10. Chiron Beta Prime – Jonathan Coulton
  11. Ocho Kandelikas – Pink Martini
  12. Joy to the World – Celtic Woman
  13. Nutcracker – Straight No Chaser
  14. Blue Christmas – She & Him
  15. Underneath the Tree – Kelly Clarkson
  16. Do You Hear What I Hear, Man? – The Bobs
  17. Christmas Is Leading Me Home – Hayley Sales
  18. Little Jack Frost Get Lost – Seth MacFarlane & Norah Jones
  19. Wonderful Christmastime – Straight No Chaser & Paul McCartney
  20. (What’s So Funny ‘Bout) Peace, Love and Understanding? – Elvis Costello, Feist, John Legend, Stephen Colbert, Toby Keith & Willie Nelson
  21. Auld Lang Syne – Pink Martini

Holiday Mix 2013

Welcome to my annual very short list of seasonal music that I can actually listen to more than once (as opposed to the all-purpose holiday crap playing most places). I’ll leave it to you to find any semi-psychological patterns in the collection.

  1. Christmas Is Starting Now – Big Bad Voodoo Daddy
  2. Mary’s Boy Child – The Idea of North
  3. Twinkling Lights – Office Romance
  4. Run Run Rudolph – Dwight Yoakam
  5. Mambo, Santa, Mambo – The Bobs
  6. 2600 – Jonathan Coulton & John Roderick
  7. Baby, It’s Cold Outside – Ben Folds & Sara Bareilles
  8. Carol of the Bells – Pentatonix
  9. Rasta Reindeer (Little Saint Nick) – The Bobs
  10. Christmas In the Sand – Colbie Caillat
  11. May Ev’ry Day Be Christmas – Irma Thomas & Preservation Hall Jazz Band
  12. Merry Christmas, Baby – Rod Stewart, Cee Lo Green, Trombone Shorty
  13. Deck the Halls – Twisted Sister
  14. Hey Santa! – Carnie and Wendy Wilson
  15. If You See Rudolph – Gretchen Wilson
  16. Mele Kalikimaka – Bing Crosby & The Andrews Sisters
  17. All I Want For Christmas – The Bobs
  18. Christmas Medley – The Idea of North
  19. Walking In a Winter Wonderland – Big Bad Voodoo Daddy
  20. Santa Baby – Pink Martini
  21. Atheists Don’t Have No Songs – Steve Martin & The Steep Canyon Rangers

Whatever you celebrate this time of year, enjoy!