Frankly, I grew tired of most Christmas songs a long time ago. The overkill started setting in for me in 1961 or thereabouts, and the majority I’d prefer to never hear again.
But I will, I will, unless–during the ever-extending Christmas season–I avoid every store and mall in the land until the day I die.
While the majority of Christmas chestnuts deserve to be roasted over an open fire, there are a few I still like, songs and performances which retain enough pure feeling or irony to overcome my general distaste for the genre. The saucy Eartha Kitt gives us a notable example and leads the way.
The Moonglows – Hey, Santa Claus
Ini Kamoze – All I Want for Christmas
Angelique Kidjo – Zan Vevede
Sonny Boy Williamson – Santa Claus
Berrogüetto – Nadal de Luintra
Beausoleil – Christmas Bayou
Lil’ Ed & the Blues Imperials – I’m Your Santa
John Prine – Christmas in Prison [live]
Cesaria Evora – Hoje e Natal [live]
Black Ace – Christmas Time Blues
Joni Mitchell – River [live]
Willie Nelson – Pretty Paper [live]
Happy Birthday, Merry Christmas & Happy New Year – Loretta Lynn
Jose Feliciano – Feliz Navidad
Louis Armstrong – Zat You, Santa Claus?
Kidnap the Sandy Claws (from The Nightmare Before Christmas)
Arlo Guthrie – The Pause of Mr. Claus (dedicated to the FBI)
Chuck Berry – Run Rudolph Run
Aretha Franklin – Blue Holiday
Ray Charles – Merry Christmas, Baby
John Lennon – Happy Xmas (War Is Over)
Tracy Chapman – O Holy Night [live]