RED: Each song has a Christmas memory. Some are from our favorite family Christmas movies that we watch regularly each year because otherwise Christmas can't come (A Muppets' Christmas, Home Alone, Charlie Brown). Elvis' Blue Christmas takes me back to my grandfather in a red sauce-stained apron howling it off key on Christmas Eve. Memories of my brothers and me in matching homemade Christmas sweaters come up with The Chipmunks' Christmas Song- Christmas Don't Be Late (visiting Santa at MACY's in NYC) and Springsteen's Santa Claus (our local mall's annual Santa breakfast). And The Christmas Song was never the same after my uncle modified the lyrics from "chestnuts roasting on an open fire" to "Jeff's nuts" at the expense of his younger brother (my dad), which we now all sing along to. These songs and so many others remind me of holiday memories and now that I'm older, have become their own traditions in our family. BROWN: I love classic Christmas carols like Joy to the World (my uncle's favorite) and Oh Holy Night because they remind me of being a little kid, literally shaking with anticipation in church on Christmas Eve. The organ and choir always sounded beautiful and, if only for a brief moment, I was always reminded of what Christmas is really all about. John Denver's Please, Daddy (Don't Get Drunk This Christmas) may not be a typical pick, but I used to sing it as a little kid without fully understanding it, much to my grandma's disdain, and it makes me think of her and laugh happily every time it comes on. As for the rest of my favorites, they were always on when decorating with my family, and are placed on constant rotation starting the week before Christmas, even when I'm at work.
With the holiday season in full swing and (for those who celebrate) Christmas a week away, you may be in the midst of cookie swaps, office parties, ugly sweater get-togethers, white elephant parties, or prepping for the big day with gift wrapping, shopping or holiday baking. Whatever you're doing, music is usually at the center of it. For both of us, Christmas music is the heart of so many Christmases past so we put together a playlist of some of our all-time Christmas favorites, memories attached, for your enjoyment.