While thinking about design, our first thoughts traditionally lean towards those things that are tangible like furniture or textiles. However, for me, the holiday season has always been about that cozy feeling we get in the glow of Christmas lights, amidst the glimmer of tinsel. Nothing brings that “feeling” like a good soundtrack of holiday music, and with apps like Spotify and Pandora, we all have a world of music literally at our fingertips. While I love a classic, I also am an early adopter of new classics. Below is a short list of holiday releases that have become classics in my home. Some I chose are jolly, and some lean toward the ethereal. Any way you spin it, these tracks will add a beautiful layer of sound to your celebration.
You are sure to recognize the voice of Tracey Thorn, one half of the English duo “Everything but the Girl.” Tracey has since done some gorgeous solo work, and this 2012 Christmas release is no exception. Her recording of Joy is charming and instantly evokes a warm nostalgic feeling.
Aimee Mann is a longtime favorite of mine. Aimee’s solo music is thoughtful, poignant and smart, and her holiday album is no different. Covering classics such as “Winter Wonderland,” “I’ll Be Home for Christmas” and original track “One More Drifter in the Snow,” her voice is clear and pretty, and this album is on repeat in my studio all season.
Let’s pick up the beat a little with the brand new Holiday release from the very talented CeeLo Green. His fresh classic “What Christmas Means to Me” is bumpin’ with jolly beats! CeeLo sings with Christina Aguilera on the classic duet “Baby, It’s Cold Outside.” To make it even more legendary, he also collaborates with the Muppets!
If you want instant nostalgia and that fuzzy feeling of Christmas, head to the Beach Boys Christmas Album. These surfer-inspired tracks are super fun to listen to—kids of any age can get down to these grooves like “Little Saint Nick.”
For those wanting a down home country Christmas, you can’t get much better than Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers “Once Upon a Christmas.” Released in the mid 80s, it still remains a fun and homey romp through thirty-five minutes of holiday tunes!
Whatever music fills your home this holiday, I truly hope it is accompanied by the sounds of laughter and joy. Go ahead and have yourself a merry little Christmas!