Nothing brings Christmas cheer quite like an upbeat holiday song! And luckily for us, lots of artists are bringing the Christmas energy with sweet lyrics and catchy melodies. So whether you’re going out caroling or want something to listen to while sitting by a warm fire, you should definitely have these songs on your holiday playlist.
Ed Sheeran & Elton John – ‘Merry Christmas’
Two of our favorite British superstars on one track? Yes please! ‘Merry Christmas’ is a fun celebration of what the holiday season is all about. It mentions mistletoes, singing festive songs, and hoping for snow. Ed told Zane Lowe on Apple Music 1:
When Elton rang me and said, “Let’s do a Christmas song,” I was like, “There’s no point doing a Christmas song, because there is so many great ones out there. If we’re going to do it, we have to chuck the kitchen sink at it and it has to tick every single box. It has to be sleigh bells… It has to be ding-dong church bells, it has to be mistletoe, dancing and wine.” I’ve never actually thought of making a Christmas song. It’s always been the type of thing that I thought I’d do when I was 60. […] To be honest, if it wasn’t with Elton, I wouldn’t be doing it. I’ve always wanted to work with him and this made the most sense.
Ed Sheeran to Zane Lowe on Apple Music 1
Lucy Spraggan – ‘All I Want For Christmas Is You’
Lucy Spraggan puts her own spin on Mariah Carey’s iconic holiday love song with her version of ‘All I Want For Christmas Is You!’ Her vocals sound absolutely gorgeous, and we’ll definitely have both renditions on our festive playlists for years to come.
I’d been thinking about doing a Christmas cover but couldn’t think of the right song. A friend suggested I do a song that is as far away from my normal sound as I could get: ‘All I Want For Christmas Is You.’ I read the lyrics and realized that it is actually a really wonderful love song and so I thought: ‘I know what to do with this!’
Laufey & dodie – ‘Love To Keep Me Warm’
We never knew we needed a collab between Laufey and dodie, but now we know we can’t live without it! ‘Love To Keep Me Warm’ is a reimagining of the holiday classic ‘Winter Weather,’ complete with beautiful, soulful vocals from both artists.
Laufey is such a special artist and spirit – I was so lucky to work with her on a Christmas song that is so special to me! ‘Winter Weather’ has been my favorite Christmas song since I was a kid (it lived on the one festive compilation CD my mum would whip out every year) and so building our own version was loads of fun.
Forest Blakk – ‘Sing Along With Me’
‘Sing Along With Me’ is a sweet ode to a lover at Christmastime, with Forest Blakk hoping to spend the holidays together. It’s perfect for anyone who’s falling in love during the festive season. Or anyone who’s celebrating a long-lasting romance!
Danielle Cormier – ‘Merrier With You’
Danielle Cormier has made it a tradition to release an original holiday song every year, and we’ve made it a tradition to eagerly anticipate what she releases! With nods to stocking-stuffing, watching It’s a Wonderful Life, and seeing snowfall, at least one lyric will speak to your own holiday celebration plans.
I had thought about recording a cover of a classic this year, but while I was looking, I became frustrated at my options and decided to write another one of my own. That’s where the inspiration started! I asked my friend, Karlie Bartholomew, to help me write the song and ‘Merrier With You’ was born! We took our personal experiences of how we celebrate with our respective partners and put those ideas into the song. But, this song isn’t just for couples celebrating the holidays together… families, friends, and roommates can all take something away from this. I hope that listeners can relate in finding those people who make the holiday season merrier.
Andrea Corr & Ronnie Wood – ‘Blue Christmas’
Andrea Corr and Ronnie Wood put their own spin on Elvis Presley’s holiday classic with their rendition of ‘Blue Christmas!’ We can’t get over their rich vocals and how their contrasting sounds make for the perfect memorable duet.
The bluesy guitar on the Elvis original immediately brought Ronnie to mind. I thought, “maybe he’ll sing with me too.” I gave him all the outs: I’ll understand, not to worry, we can still be friends, and he just said, “yeah” with so much enthusiasm. Now it’s not just him and his guitar that I love, his singing is so good on this record.
JAGMAC – ‘Wrapped Up’
One of the best parts of the holiday season is spending time with family, and the sibling sextet JAGMAC boosts that to the fullest on their cheerful track ‘Wrapped Up.’ The upbeat love song sees the siblings inviting a partner over during Christmastime, and we love the cheeky nod to “cuffing season” in the third verse!
Fickle Friends – ‘My Favourite Day’
Fickle Friends celebrate Christmas traditions on the heartwarming ‘My Favourite Day,’ with some special help from their fans! The band asked fans to share their favorite holiday memories, and the result was a sweet, nostalgic track.
Have you ever tried writing a Christmas song? It’s actually very hard! When we were trying to think of a good concept we kept coming back to our own memories of past Christmases. The funny little quirks of family traditions, and things that went wrong one year. We asked our fans to send in some of their own stories and we pieced together a narrative from all of those. ‘My Favourite Day’ is sprinkled with anticipation, excitement and nostalgia, everything we wanted to add into the mix for a FF Christmas song.
Frontwoman Natti Shiner
Sebastian Javier – ‘Christmas Time’
Sebastian Javier pays tribute to his international relatives with ‘Christmas Time,’ a celebration of love and togetherness in the midst of COVID-19 separating families. It’s a sweet reminder to enjoy the time you have with loved ones who you don’t often see, because sudden circumstances might prevent you from getting to visit them.
The ‘Christmas Time’ video was shot at a special dinner my family and I had recently, and reflects on the importance of spending time with those we love. Having my grandparents from Argentina in town for the first time since the pandemic has been the greatest gift, and I hope the video offers a tiny glimpse of my gratitude.
McFly – ‘Walking In The Air’
McFly offers their take on a track from The Snowman with ‘Walking In The Air!’ We love that they injected a new, bolder energy to the formerly soft song in a way that only McFly could offer. This one is definitely going straight into our annual holiday rotation.
Pentatonix – ‘Over The River’ (Featuring Lindsey Stirling)
To grandmother’s house we go… to play her this festive song! Pentatonix put a fresh spin on the classic ‘Over The River’ with strings by their friend Lindsey Stirling. If anyone were to join Pentatonix, we’d definitely want it to be Lindsey – their collabs are always incredible, dating back to their joint cover of Imagine Dragons’ ‘Radioactive’ in March 2013.
Nathan Evans – ‘Driving Home For Christmas’
If you’re traveling for the holidays, ‘Driving Home For Christmas’ is just the song for you! It’s an upbeat track about finally getting to see your relatives and friends again during the festive season. It’s one of Nathan’s first Christmas releases, and we hope there are more in the years to come!
This is the first time I’ve released music for the festive season and I can’t wait for you all to hear it. When I was growing up, we’d always have Christmas music playing from early December right up until New Years Eve so it’s great that I can help spread a little joy around this time of year.
ABBA – ‘Little Things’
ABBA are using their voices and platform for good, with the release of ‘Little Things.’ Not only can you listen to this beautiful Christmas song, but you can support UNICEF’s mission to help young girls while you’re streaming or buying! It’s a win-win that we can’t get enough of.
We think it is impossible to eradicate poverty without the empowerment of women. That’s why we support UNICEF in protecting girls from sexual violence and empowering them through the Global Child Protection Fund. We have done so for many years with our song ‘Chiquitita’ and now we have decided to give UNICEF a Christmas gift in the form of a second song: ‘Little Things’ from our album Voyage.
Darren Criss – ‘(Everybody’s Waitin’ For) The Man With The Bag’ (Featuring Adam Lambert)
We’ve wanted Darren Criss and Adam Lambert to collab for years now, and it looks like Christmas came early for us! They covered the holiday classic ‘The Man With The Bag’ with a playful spin and cheeky spoken interludes, and we’re obsessed with how Darren’s smooth voice sounds against Adam’s raspier vocals.
Jamie Miller – ‘Home By Midnight’
For the ultimate soft evening vibes, play ‘Home By Midnight’ while wrapped up in a cozy blanket or sitting by a fire. Jamie Miller spends the song hoping that a loved one will be home soon, so it’s perfect for anyone waiting for family or friends to visit. We love the inclusion of a jingle bell for an extra festive touch, and the music video is such a fun representation of the song!
Featured Image Source: Jamie Miller by Jessica Spohr, edited by Madison Murray for THP