Old vs. New Christmas Music: Which is Better?

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Old vs. New Christmas Music: Which is Better?


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Before I discuss one of the most important Christmas discussions that can be had (which Christmas music is the best), let me first identify what is “old” and what is “new.”

“Old” Christmas music is the classics: the stuff from the 70s and earlier. I know that the 80s were technically a pretty long time ago, but some of those songs are extremely poppy–so perhaps what I’m debating is classic Xmas music versus pop Xmas music.

Let’s use what I think to be three of the best Christmas songs of all time as examples: Mariah Carey’s “All I Want For Christmas is You,” Brenda Lee’s “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree,” and the countless versions of “Silent Night.” Each brings their own special feeling to the holiday. Mariah’s offers a fun, exciting twist and brings Christmas to a modern age. Despite whether you follow its religious messages, I find that “Silent Night” brings me a powerful reminder of the tradition of Christmas itself. Brenda Lee’s classic will always signify the fun of Christmas with such instantly recognizable lyrics and opening notes.

I find no reason to choose between the three subgenres of Christmas music. There is so much accessible holiday music that it’s kind of astounding, but I have found a way to really solidify my holiday experience. Modern pop Xmas music is for shopping and wrapping presents. Some notable songs include “Underneath the Tree” (Kelly Clarkson), “Santa Baby” (Ariana Grande), and “Santa’s Coming for Us” (Sia). Hits from the 50s and 60s are for decorating the tree, opening presents, and background music for parties: “Jingle Bell Rock” (Bobby Helms), “Feliz Navidad” (Jose Feliciano), and “White Christmas” (Bing Crosby). More classical, religious pieces, if you choose to listen, are perfect for enjoying some Christmas lights or just relaxing and feeling the joy of the holiday: “The First Noel” (Frank Sinatra) and “Joy To The World” (Nat King Cole).

There are countless covers, albums, and versions of most of these songs, but I think that some people sing them better than others.

So what, you may ask, is the best Xmas song of all time?

“Carol of The Bells.” 100%. That song is better than most normal songs.