Skip to main content

The Wedding Jam Blog

Memorable Stories from Unforgettable Weddings.

Posted:

Wedding Jam's Christmas Gift to You

It's that time of year again; the time of year when the shops, pubs and radio airwaves pump out the same songs for a month.

While we do love some of the seasonal staples - from the likes of Phil Spector, McCartney, The Waitresses, Wham and others - we thought we'd share 10 of our favourite not-so-well-known festive tunes for you to consider for your own Christmas playlists.

Dig into our selection box! Merry Christmas!

Acharliebrownchristmas

Jonwayne - Sticky Bandits

In 2018, underground rapper and producer Jonwayne dropped his festive beattape Yuletide Bangerz, and what an utter revelation it is. Somehow melding Christmas nostalgia with absolutely smoking beats, it encapsulates everything we love about good Christmas music. This track samples A Christmas Star from Home Alone 2. Nostalgia never felt so fresh.

Donny Hathaway - This Christmas

Sampled in the aforemention Yuletide Bangerz, this original remains an absolute vibe. Reasonably well-known, but still seldom makes those Christmas compilations that are repackaged every year. Why?!

Vince Guaraldi Trio - Christmas Time is Here

Guaraldi was a master and back in 1964, when he wrote A Charlie Brown Christmas, he contrived to write Christmas music that sounded nostalgic even when it was new. Lyricist Lee Mendelson deployed one of the songwriter's cleverest devices: writing cheery lyrics that would ordinarily have been set to an upbeat ditty, but instead setting them to a rueful tune that sets a tone of regret. Mendelson passed away on Christmas Day 2019.

Frank Sinatra - An Old Fashioned Christmas

A sometimes overlooked festive offering from Ol' Blue Eyes. It beautifully evokes that Christmas nostalgia with line after line of comforting homeliness ('right now my Mum's there in the kitchen, basting the Christmas bird...') as Frank longs for his old fashioned Christmas. "I'd trade that whole Manhattan skyline, the shimmering steel and chrome, for one old fashioned Christmas back home", he laments. Utterly perfect.

Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass - The Bell That Couldn't Jingle

Quite how and why this isn't a Christmas radio and high street regular is anybody's guess. Written by the great Burt Bacharach, full of his signature jazzy chords, it ticks most of the boxes - feelgood, festive, and vibing in that super chill loungey way that only Bacharach can.

Bill Compton - 25th of the 12th

Although recently featured in Netflix sensation The Queen's Gambit, little is known about this track. As warm as your winter duvet, it recalls the likes of The Four Freshmen...wholesome 1950s boys absolutely lathered in Brylcreem as they croon away. That's good enough for us.

Sufjan Stevens - Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing

Originally a hymn written in 1758, Sufjan gives it the straight up simple cover version treatment. Who knows what the original sounded like, but it's easy to imagine that it might not have been too different. Conjuring vibes of traditional Christmases of yore, the beautifully simple arrangement is perfect. Try and fend off those goosebumps when Sufjan and the harmonies go a capella for the final minute.


Girl Ray - (I Wish I Were Giving You a Gift) This Christmas

A lovely wonky indie pop Christmas tune from Girl Ray, who chuck in all the necessary ingredients - sleigh bells, honking brass, tinkling pianos, strings, a school choir, and wobbly tempo changes for good measure. A certified festive indie banger.

Low - Just Like Christmas

Okay, we're cheating a bit here. Somehow, lo-fi indie stalwarts have snuck into the nations' consciousness with Just Like Christmas now regularly heard in High Street shops and cheesy radio stations. Released in 1999 as a “gift” to fans – it became a truly unexpected seasonal delight: a serious and reclusive indie band embracing the season without a hint of irony. This track wasn't overtly about Christmas - just those moments that make you feel Christmassy. It's that sense of nostalgia again, and it's perfect.

The Granville Williams Orchestra - Santa Claus is Ska-ing to Town

Who doesn't want a bit of Christmas reggae?! From the legendary Trojan Christmas Boxset, this joyful slice of festive cheer drops a bit of sunshine instead of snow onto our Christmas playlists.

Special bonus track 1!

The Free Design - Close Your Mouth (It's Christmas)

Cos it's Christmas, our list of 10 becomes 11 with this bonus track, metaphorically gift-wrapped from all of us at Wedding Jam! This gorgeous baroque pop tune features one of the all-time great Christmas lyrics - 'get to know the people in your house - you might like 'em!'

Special bonus track 2!

Field Music - Home for Christmas

What the hell - let's have one more! This brand new seasonal tune - taken from Lost Christmas: A Memphis Industries Festive Selection Box - does that Vince Guaraldi thing of making a new track feel somehow familiar and warmly nostalgic. Ticking most of the requisite boxes, and with a squelchy keyboard line that faintly recalls McCartney's 'Wonderful Christmastime', this could be a staple of your Christmas playlists for years to come.