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A Very Merry Christmas Playlist

Fair Lawn resident Stu Pace breaks down his Christmas playlist.

Editor's Note: This column originally ran on Dec. 5, but we're bringing it out again on Christmas Day.

Alright, so it’s the Christmas season and you keep changing the radio station to find the perfect music to listen to while you celebrate, decorate, reminisce, or, just as the soundtrack to your day.

But the radio stations have their usual awful playlist of a few classics mixed with some really bland undecipherable artists that don’t inspire you. Rod Stewart? Why did he bother? Celine Dion? Thought she passed on, evidently it was just her career. Mariah? I don’t need that many octaves in my day. Josh Groban, Sarah McLachlan, Michael Buble? Ugh- And 106.7 plays the same songs everyday, five times a day. Unacceptable with the thousands of recordings made over the years.

My Christmas playlist is chock full of great music because I demand it. Here is my abbreviated 20 must-haves for my iTunes Christmas playlist:

  1. White Christmas- Bing Crosby. Stop. That’s really all you need. But there are more.
  2. Little Drummer Boy-Harry Simeone Chorale. Hauntingly beautiful.
  3. Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas- Judy Garland. She sets the mood with her voice-and an amazing arrangement
  4. I Believe in Father Christmas- Emerson Lake and Palmer. A beautiful melody with a message that everyone gets wrong.
  5. Santa’s Beard- Beach Boys. Brian’s first verse is brilliant.
  6. Silver and Gold- Burl Ives. I know, it’s not Holly Jolly, but it’s another chestnut that doesn’t get the airplay it deserves.
  7. Aspenglow- John Denver. The leadoff track from his album, just a gorgeous song that was probably never on the radio.
  8. Ring Out Solstice Bells-Jethro Tull. Merry Old English sound from one of my fave bands.
  9. Christmas Wrapping- Waitresses. Just a fun song from the Square Pegs group.
  10. Thank God It’s Christmas- Queen. Freddy singing a Christmas Song. Thank you very much.
  11. Peace on Earth/Little Drummer Boy-Bing and Bowie. What seemed like an awkward pairing in 1977 ended up being the last Bing Christmas special highlight.
  12. Ho Ho Ho and a Bottle of Rum- Jimmy Buffett. I dare you not to dance to this one.
  13. Winter Wonderland- Annie Lennox. The first Special Christmas release was the best, and this one was the standout.
  14. Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)- U2. I’m not a big U2 fan, but I am of this instant classic.
  15. The Christmas Waltz- Sinatra. It’s that time of year………………………The Voice.
  16. Baby It’s Cold Outside- Dean Martin. He nailed it, everyone else just tries to copy it. Note to self --Don’t try.
  17. 2000 Miles- Pretenders. I just love the way the song fades in.
  18. Santa Baby- Madonna. Eartha Kitt sounded mean. The only record I own with Madonna’s name on it, because the rest of her stuff is garbage.
  19. Silver Bells- Kate Smith. Always takes me back to Christmas Shopping in Radburn as a kid. Now Radburn Shopping District is just a dark uninviting place.
  20. I’ll Be Home For Christmas-Perry Como. Never realized it was about a soldier writing home. I always remember it as the song that made Mom cry when my brother left for college.

There you have it. If you don’t have these songs on your playlist, try them out. And Merry Christmas to all, and to all, a good night.


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Rich Seibel December 25, 2012 at 12:43 PM
Lou Rawls. Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas. Great Album. Asleep at the Wheel. Christmas In Jail. Commander Cody Daddies Drinking Up Our Christmas. All Hits.
Walter Weglein December 26, 2012 at 04:48 PM
"Now Radburn Shopping District is just a dark uninviting place"...so Stuart, what can be done about it, and by whom? State Senator Bob Gordon has his office there...he should be a logical person to ask...let me know what he tells you...


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