Stories produced by St. Peter's Journalism Students
By Dylan Smith and Natalie Castillo, Class of 2014
As many of you know – and as many of you also hoped for – Christmas music has started to be played once again as soon as the calendar turned to December 1st. From malls to people’s cars, and even the odd twenty-four-seven Christmas music radio station, the tunes of people like Mariah Carey to the must-have holiday classics (“Santa Claus is Coming to Town”, “Silent Night”, “The Little Drummer Boy”) are filling the air.
To prep the festive spirit in all, below are the Top 5 Christmas singles of all time, according to us, at The Peacock Press. Comment and let us know if you agree with our choices, while also suggesting some of your own favorites.
1. Mariah Carey – “All I Want For Christmas Is You”
I don’t want a lot for Christmas,. there is just one thing I need
And I don’t care about the presents, underneath the Christmas tree
I don’t need to hang my stocking, there upon the fireplace
Santa Claus won’t make me happy with a toy on Christmas Day
Her name is probably now synonymous with Christmas music just as much as its become synonymous with her singing ability and legacy of soulful pop and R&B ballads.
“All I Want For Christmas Is You” was released in 1994 as the lead single from Carey’s fourth studio album, Merry Christmas, and has gone on to be considered one of the most critically praised modern additions to the Christmas music genre.
Carey’s Merry Christmas produced another hit single in ‘Joy To The World” and contributed to the recording of a second Christmas album, Merry Christmas II You, which was released sixteen years following the original.It is almost impossible to go through a winter season without hearing Carey’s voice.
2. Justin Bieber – “Mistletoe”
Everyone’s gathering around the fire, chestnuts roasting like a hot July
I should be chilling with my folks, I know, but I’mma be under the mistletoe
Word on the street Santa’s coming tonight, reindeer’s flying through the sky so high
I should be making a list, I know, but I’mma be under the mistletoe
A Christmas song for the new generation. Justin Bieber’s “Mistletoe” was the lead single off Bieber’s first Christmas album, Under The Mistletoe.
Not only did Bieber find success within his target audience of preteens and young adults who may not even be able to tell you who someone like Mariah Carey even is, but was generally well-received by critics of all age, who praised the teen for his modern take on many Christmas classics.
Bieber’s album also featured urban twists on Christmas classics, featuring Busta Rhymes on an updated version of The Little Drummer Boy and saw him singing an updated, remixed version of Mariah Carey’s “All I Want For Christmas Is You” with Carey herself.
3. Britney Spears – “My Only Wish (This Year)”
Santa, can you hear me?
I have been so good this year and all I want is one thing, Tell me my true love is near
He’s all I want, just for me underneath my Christmas tree, I’ll be waiting here.
Santa, that’s my only wish this year
Recorded for the one-off Christmas compilation Platinum Christmas, Britney Spears’ “My Only Wish (This Year)” is one of the musical gems from the early 2000’s.
The compilation was released by Jive Records in 2000 and featured other Christmas songs by 90’s pop sensations like Monica, *NSYNC, The Backstreet Boys, and even Christina Aguilera, but Spears’ uptempo pop tune has become a lasting figure in retail stores and the most unexpected little corners during the holiday season.
It may not be the most honorable title for a song, but we know you’ll smile when you hear Spears’ making a wish to Santa next time you’re in the mall buying a gift for a loved one or just getting a nice cup of hot cocoa to admire lights with a friend.
4. John Lennon and Yoko Ono – Happy Xmas (War Is Over)
And so this is Xmas (war is over) For weak and for strong (if you want it)
For rich and the poor ones (war is over) The world is so wrong (if you want it)
And so happy Xmas (war is over) For black and for white (if you want it)
For yellow and red ones (war is over) Let’s stop all the fight (now)
Happy Xmas (War is Over) by John Lennon and Yoko Ono was released in 1971. The song was written for a campaign against the Vietnam War in 1969, making a last impression with not only its lyrical content, but its heartfelt video as well.
Not only is this song one of the best Christmas songs ever because Lennon is a legend, in his own right, but the songs makes the listener reflect on how they’ve lived the past year and what they’ll be doing different in the upcoming new year. A true holiday classic won’t just focus on the holidays, but those who may not be as fortunate as others.
Lennon and Ono’s songs gets a place on this because during a time when people focus on presents and just their families during the holidays, this song celebrates the holiday and humanity.
5. Donny Hathaway – “This Christmas”
Presents and cards are here; my world is filled with cheer and you, this Christmas.
And as I look around your eyes outshine the town they do, this Christmas.
Donny Hathaway was described as a major force in soul music by Rolling Stone magazine, which is why his song, “This Christmas”, released in 1970, makes the list for best Christmas songs.
He’s influenced artists like Stevie Wonder, Amy Winehouse, Beyonce and Chris Brown, who covered the song for the movie, This Christmas. The soulful and smooth song is about all the traditional events that take place during the holiday season.
From hanging mistletoe’s to caroling and sitting by the fireplace, it’s no question that this song is a timeless classic.
LET US KNOW: Do you agree? Did we hit the mark completely or did we get into the holiday spirit?
Did we miss a Christmas classic that you swear as a must-need on your own playlist?
Let us know in the comments below and share your thoughts.