It's officially December of 2018 (can you believe it?!), and it's time for this hectic, exhausting, and challenging year to wind down and cut us all a break!
I won't get into the bad luck I've been hit with in the last month, because... it's Christmas season, and I'm feeling good, and listening to tons of groovy holiday tunes to get in the spirit. And while I don't have a suggested "mix" playlist planned, instead I have a whole bunch of holiday themed albums and EP's I've been spinning that I wanted to recommend.
Although I'm an avid vinyl collector, when it comes to listening to music digitally, iTunes has been my go to. I have the majority of my extensive music collection "in the cloud" as they say, so when it came down to subscribing to a monthly service, I opted with Apple Music, and let me tell you... I love it.
So, some of these are already available on Apple Music, others you'll find directly from the artists via their Bandcamp pages, and some are a bit more obscure, but I'm confident you can track them down fairly easily online in today's day and age.
Let's break out the (spiked) egg nog, and get into the Christmas spirit! First up...
Jr. Juggernaut - "XMas Is For Everyone" Single
Jonah Matranga - "Holiday-ish Fun"
Bayside - "Angels We Have Heard On High" and "A Long December"
Two one off singles from Long Island's own Bayside, the first is their holiday theme tinged "Angels We Have Heard On High," which you can find on iTunes or Apple Music. And although it's not technically a "holiday" song, they also did an amazing cover of The Counting Crows "A Long December," which, quite frankly, I prefer to the original version!
Marc Martel - "Christmas Time Is Here" EP
I fell down the Marc Martel rabbit hole after discovering his incredible one-man Queen cover of "Bohemian Rhapsody" on You Tube. From there, I started poking around to some of his other music. Yes, he's got the voice of Freddie Mercury, but then I noticed he had a handful of holiday themed EP's and albums that he made his own. The one I'd personally recommend starting with is "Christmas Time Is Here," because it's got this beautiful rendition of "All I Want For Christmas Is You," which I immediately forwarded to my girlfriend once December 1st rolled around! There's plenty of other famous Christmas covers on here, but it's all about this song!
JD McPherson - "Socks"
Here's one that came out of nowhere for me! My buddy AJ Bowen is a big fan of both Christmas horror movies, and Christmas music. So, he texted me asking if I'd ever heard of JD McPherson, which I hadn't. This album "Socks" is such a brilliant, beautiful oldies-esque holiday album full of new songs that have quickly gone into heavy rotation for me this Christmas season. You can find this on iTunes, Apple Music, or via his official website. Highly recommended!
ANNA AND THE APOCALYPSE Soundtrack
Morgan Aimes - "SILENT NIGHT, DEADLY NIGHT Christmas Songs"
Jackson 5 - "Christmas Album"
This was an Apple Music discovery, but did you know the Jackson 5 did a Christmas album?!? You probably did! But I didn't know. And it's great! There's something about listening to a 12 year old Michael Jackson singing these classic songs with such innocence and conviction that makes them wonderful and new! The Jackson 5 Christmas Album is a heartwarming winner.
Scott Weiland - "The Most Wonderful Time Of Year"
Did you know that Stone Temple Pilots frontman Scott Weiland also did a Christmas album?! It's called "The Most Wonderful Time Of Year" and it's covers of all the classics! It makes sense, because Scott channels all the old-school crooners here for his renditions of these holiday classics. He even made a very IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE-esque video for "Winter Wonderland." You can find this pretty easily on iTunes or Apple Music.
TALES FROM THE CRYPT - "Have Yourself A Scary Little Christmas"
So, that's what I've been listening to this December!
What about you?