Christmas time is just around the corner, and if you’re trying to fill in the time before December 25th (or just set the festive mood), then you’ll want to be blasting some Christmas music. But what songs are worthy of your playlist? After hearing The Wombats sleigh (sorry) White Christmas on triple j Like A Version last year, we were inspired to find a few others.
Whether you’re into pop, punk, hip hop or anything in between, we’ve got you covered with the best Christmas songs that your favourite artists have to offer.
Pink Sweat$ & Donny Hathaway - This Christmas
With a pastel cupcake-lookin' lyric video to match, R&B newcomer Pink Sweat$ has dropped a modern rework of soul legend Donny Hathaway's 1971 classic, This Christmas. It's a great example of how more classic Christmas songs can be brought into the 21st century while still retaining its original charm.
Kacey Musgraves & Troye Sivan - Glittery
Kacey Musgraves just released a full Christmas special with the likes of Lana Del Rey and Zooey Deschanel and one of the songs that's stood out is Glittery, Kacey's collab with our very own Troye Sivan. It's a delicately plucked acoustic tune that sounds warm enough to play even during an Australian Christmas.
Carly Rae Jepsen – Last Christmas
Is there anything Carly Rae Jepsen can’t do? Hot on the heels of releasing her magnum opus (to date) E•MO•TION, CRJ released a cover of Wham!’s Last Christmas, and brought it to a whole new audience. It’s hard not to listen to this song and not immediately enter a festive frenzy, such is the power of her vocals. This cover had people shook at the time, and a few years on, it’s still got people in a frenzy. Christmas staple for sure.
The Killers – Don’t Shoot Me Santa
There’s no limit on how many catchy tunes The Killers produce. Like a fine wine, their songs only get better with age, and this track from 2007 is no exception. No stranger to a Christmas song (this follows 2006’s A Great Big Sled), the tune might not exactly reinvent the concept of a Christmas song, but let’s face it – who doesn’t want to hear Brandon Flowers singing a Christmas song? Clearly, even the band does, with a host of Christmas songs released by them after this track (it’s definitely worth your while tracking them down). The music video is itself worth watching, including the aforementioned Flowers with facial hair that this writer is jealous of.
All Time Low – Merry Christmas Kiss My Ass
Pop punk and Christmas songs aren’t exactly a combination you’d expect, but as with a later entry in this list, they seem to go hand in hand. All Time Low released this back in 2011, and whilst it is definitely ironic (as it would seem most of the songs in this list are), it still makes for a festive listen. It is most certainly not an easy task to pull off a great Christmas song, especially when you’re clearly not the biggest fans of the holiday, but ATL have done it with ease. The song has an important message – if you break up with someone on Christmas, you’re an asshole. We’re just glad we’re not the person that they’re singing about.
Chance The Rapper and Jeremih – Merry Christmas Lil Mama
Chance The Rapper is many things – musician, philanthropist, alleged saver of SoundCloud, and with this collaboration with Jeremih, he’s a certified Christmas musician. Their 2016 Christmas album, Merry Christmas Lil Mama, contains hit after hit – but for a standout tune, you can’t go past the title track. This is one Christmas song that you can play around your mates and not get laughed down. Chance can seemingly do no wrong, and when it comes to Christmas music, this album shows people how it’s done. After all, what other musicians are giving their home town (for Chance, it’s Chicago) a brilliant Christmas album as a gift?
blink-182 – Not Another Christmas Song
Released just last week, the blink boys are no strangers to Christmas songs with a Grinch-like edge and Not Another Christmas Song follows in the footsteps of I Won't Be Home For Christmas for those we don't look at the holiday through rose-coloured glasses. It's even dropped with a raucous stop motion clip set in the North Pole. Fun fact: I Won't Be Home For Christmas was their only Canadian number 1. Maybe Canadians aren’t as nice as we thought? Or alternatively, maybe they saw the song for what it was – a fun take on Christmas, and a kickass pop punk song to boot.
Run The Jewels – A Christmas F**king Miracle
Sometimes, collaborations don’t always go to plan. Two great artists don’t always equal the sum of their parts, but can hold each other back. Collaborations can often fizzle out after a release or two, consigned to the less-discussed parts of an artist’s discography.
Luckily, that is the opposite of the case when it comes to Run The Jewels. Killer Mike and El-P are consistently excellent when it comes to their releases, and while they might not be the biggest artist on this list, they more than match it when it comes to innovative output. After all, what other artists would release cat-themed remixes of one of their albums – and pull it off? This comes off their first album, Run The Jewels, and speaks to the idea of not selling out – a concept that not only comes through in this song, but their discography in general. It’s not the most Christmassy song mentioned here, but it’s sure to make any hip hop fan feel festive.
However, if this excellent song wasn’t enough for you, here’s another Run The Jewels-themed gift – our favourite Run The Jewels gifs.
Mariah Carey – All I Want For Christmas Is You