It’s officially December, which means it is finally acceptable to get into the Christmas spirit. Beginning today and continuing every Friday of December, the A&E section will be collaborating to share tips and tricks on the best ways to spread the holiday cheer. To kick off the holiday season, check out our top pick’s of Christmas albums that are sure to get you feeling festive.
This whopping two hour album compiles classic Christmas melodies in Sufjan Stevens’ soothing voice along with some of his own Christmas compositions to add more of his own flavor to the album. The simplicity and unity of many Christmas songs fit into Stevens’ style perfectly; his fresh take on them brings a new light to Christmas. Even if you’re tired of hearing all the same songs this Christmas, Stevens has you covered with a multitude of original holiday treats.
Leslie Odom Jr. doesn’t need Broadway to become famous. All he needs is his voice and he uses it to his full potential in his Christmas album, “Simply Christmas,” an exemplary showcase of pure beauty. Odom sings a variety of classic songs such as “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” and “I’ll be Home for Christmas.” He sings wonderful renditions of many other songs that aren’t the typical classics such as “Winter Song” and “Edelweiss.” Through the whole album, Odom never lets the instruments overpower his voice. Instead, the music is soft and simple in the background and compliments the magical voice of Odom that is front in center with all the glory that encompasses it.
No other album will put you in the Christmas spirit quite like Michael Bublé’s “Christmas.” The classic tunes are filled with extra festive twists; the classical instruments really take control of the Christmas feelings, and Bublé’s old school voice compliments them perfectly. Songs like “I’ll be Home for Christmas” and “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” have a classic Frank Sinatra vibe, providing the vintage Christmas mood to the album. His own original track, “Cold December Night,” provides a more “pop” style song to the album, with an upbeat tempo and a catchy melody. My personal favorite is “All I Want For Christmas is You.” The song best known for Mariah Carey’s whistle tones and extremely upbeat tempo gets toned down; Bublé’s rendition focuses on the passionate piano and his smooth vocals, giving the song a whole new feeling. Bublé’s “Christmas” is sure to put you in a more festive mood than you ever thought possible.
In late 2011 Bieber released his second album, Under the Mistletoe and it has become a Christmas must. He played the traditional Christmas songs such as “Santa Claus is Coming to Town,” “Silent Night” and “Drummer Boy.” Bieber made each and every song into his own by by adding an R&B twist. He collaborates with many people in this album, including Mariah Carey, performing “All I Want for Christmas is You.” His voice is young and sweet, making the album sound pure and innocent.