At some point during the Christmas season, even the most fervent Christmas lover is going to get a little down. Maybe you’re just physically tired from adding shopping and baking and decorating to your already busy schedule. Maybe you hear a news story about a murder, a robbery, or some other injustice that reminds you how far away we are from peace on earth, good will to men. Maybe it’s just a rainy day that makes you a little melancholy.
Or maybe you’ve just had to deal with one of your least favorite things about Christmas. For me, that’s wrapping presents. I don’t like it because I’m not good at it. The finished present never looks anything like the vision in my head. Even switching to gift bags didn’t help. Now it always looks like I wadded up a bunch of torn tissue paper and stuffed it in a bag.
Whenever that down spell hits me, I turn, as usual, to music. I’m not talking about anti-Christmas songs, or even perversely funny songs like “Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer.” Some of the songs on this playlist point out where we fall short of the Christmas dream, and some just make me teary for no good reason, but they all still celebrate the spirit of Christmas.
- Christmas in America–Melissa Etheridge
- Do They Know It’s Christmas–Band Aid
- Happy Christmas (War is Over)–John and Yoko and the Plastic Ono Band
- Where Are You Christmas?–Faith Hill
- Come Darkness, Come Light–Mary Chapin Carpenter
- I’ll Be Home For Christmas–Johnny Mathis
- It Won’t Be the Same This Year–Vince Gill
- December–Norah Jones
- Light of the Stable–Emmylou Harris
- The Little Drummer Boy–Bob Seger
- Do You Hear What I Hear–Whitney Houston
- I Believe in Father Christmas–Emerson Lake and Palmer
* from the song I Believe in Father Christmas (“They said there’d be snow on Christmas/They said there’d be peace on earth/But instead it just kept on raining/A veil of tears for the virgin birth”)