This Is the Best Christmas Music Playlist of All Time

15 Dec
Photo credit: TSgt Suzanne M. Day/Creative Commons

Photo credit: TSgt Suzanne M. Day/Creative Commons

True story: If you want to know what the best Christmas music is, you should ask a Jewish person.

Why is that? Honestly, I really don’t know. Perhaps it has something to do with, as Sarah Spigelman Richter recently wrote on, a deep-seated sense of FOMO for “a culture that is in no way destined to be mine.” Feeling left out can be hard, so we appreciate the “Americanized, agnostic version of the Christmas season” that much more because it’s not really ours.

Or maybe that has nothing to do with it.

What I do know is that were it not for the Jews, we wouldn’t have some of the best Christmas songs of all time. “White Christmas,” anyone? “Silver Bells?” “The Christmas Song (Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire)?” Etc. Etc. All written by Jews. So clearly, we know our holiday tunes.

FullSizeRenderFor 10 years, I created my own holiday (mostly Christmas) mixes. The creation of my annual volume of A Very Marty Xmas was as much a tradition as the airing of A Charlie Brown Christmas or Darlene Love’s appearance on David Letterman’s show, and I know many folks who still dig out my CDs every year when they’re trimming the tree or hosting a party, or just getting in the holiday spirit.

Amazingly, it’s been five years since my last Very Marty Xmas mix. And I actually miss them. Maybe you do too.

So this year, I decided to update my Ultimate Very Marty Xmas playlist on Spotify to include even more of the seasonal favorites I love. Now, in addition to most of the tracks that I included on my “Best Of” edition in 2007, and some other favorites, you’ll also find tracks that were released in the last five years: Coldplay’s “Christmas Lights,” Kelly Clarkson’s “Underneath the Tree,” Straight No Chaser and Kristen Bell’s “Text Me Merry Christmas,” Matt Wertz’s “Snow Globe,” and Lennon and Maisy Stella’s “Christmas Coming Home,” among others. You’ll also find a few brand-new-in-2015 songs, like Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings’ “8 Days of Hanukkah,” Michael Bublé’s “The More You Give,” and Tin Bird Choir’s “Season of Peace.”

vmxDarlene Love’s here. Bruce Springsteen’s here. The Pogues are here. So are Donny Hathaway, the Jackson 5, Mindy Smith, the Ramones, and Stevie Wonder.

There are Christmas songs, Hanukkah songs, and even a couple New Year’s Eve songs.

There is not: “Dominick the Donkey,” “Santa Baby,” or even “Silent Night,” even though it is apparently the most covered Christmas song of all time.

In short: If it was possible for the Very Marty Xmas playlist to get any more perfect, it just did.

Put this playlist on shuffle and you’re sure to have a very happy, very festive holiday season, whether you celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, or something else.

You can trust me on that: I’m Jewish.

Click here to listen. Enjoy!

Just checking: Is there anything YOU would add to this playlist? Please let me know in the comments section below.

5 Responses to “This Is the Best Christmas Music Playlist of All Time”

  1. htoby (@htoby) December 15, 2015 at 10:09 am #

    Once again thanks for making the Ultimate Very Marty Xmas mix. While I do not get to see you in an office this brings back happy memories. Now if someone would come in with cupcakes…..

  2. Melanie December 15, 2015 at 2:22 pm #

    Points for the Pogues. Points off for no “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” by the Pretenders and Charo’s “Donde Esta Santa Claus?” I await these corrections for the 2016 version.

    • Martin Lieberman December 15, 2015 at 3:42 pm #

      In defense of my decision re: “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas,” I tried to only have each song appear once, and I actually like the Colbie Caillat version. (Please don’t hate me for that.) But you’re right: the Pretenders version is very good. So I’ve made that switch. Thanks! But Guster stays. 🙂


  1. The 2015 Happiness Project | Martin's Musings - December 15, 2015

    […] 15 Republished/reshared my Ultimate Very Marty Xmas Spotify playlist on my blog today and apparently, made a bunch of people happy. Which made me […]

  2. Can I Interest You in Hanukkah Songs … that Aren’t Sung by Adam Sandler? | Martin's Musings - December 8, 2017

    […] love more than Christmas music. I made Very Marty Xmas mixes for 10 years, and continue to maintain an “Ultimate” playlist version of the mix on Spotify that includes everyone from Mariah Carey to Andy Williams to Harry Connick, Jr. to Darlene Love […]

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