What are the best Christmas songs of all time?
By Emily Lane and Ailsa Kenny
1.Last Christmas – WHAM!
[AILSA] Last Christmas has to be my favourite Christmas song, but it was a tough decision. It is such an easy song to sing along to with your friends and you can really pour emotion into it, even if you look a bit stupid. It’s just one of those songs that everyone knows all the words to, adding the extra excitement. This is also one of George Michael’s best ever songs, may he rest in peace.
[EMILY] We must have been programmed knowing this song completely off by heart because I haven’t met a single person who doesn’t know this one. Like Ailsa said: it’s one of those songs that you can sing with such passion and showmanship. There’s a challenge this year to see how long you can avoid this song on the radio, in shops etc until December 24th: sounds near impossible to me.
2.Fairytale of New York – The Pogues, featuring Kirsty McColl
[AILSA] This is my second favourite because it doesn’t feel like it’s a traditional Christmas song, making it different and more exciting to listen to. I feel like it’s one of the songs that puts me and my family in a Christmassy mood.
[EMILY] Meh. Nothing more I can say about it really. I think people only like this song because there’s a swear in it and kids can just sing it without their parents clocking it. This song doesn’t really scream ‘New York’ to me either? It sounds like it belongs in medieval England with that annoying flute tooting throughout the song. Problem is loads of people love it. I think I’ve offended most people reading this. Sorry I guess.
3.I wish it could be Christmas - Wizzard
[AILSA] I really do love this song. It is one of the funniest songs to see my family sing along to, mainly due to the fact that we all get to scream ‘’IT’S CHRISTMASSS’’ so loudly. The music video is one of my favourite things about Christmas, despite them being dressed up a bit creepily.
[EMILY] Despite the repetitive lyrics and the dreadful prospect of it being Christmas every waking day of eternity, this song is a lot of fun and the music video is pure gold featuring some of the best costume and makeup designs I’ve ever seen.
4.All I want for Christmas – Mariah Carey
[AILSA] This song is one of my all-time favourites as it is a song that everyone seems to know off by heart, which is so fun as everyone joins in. It’s especially funny when you split the parts up and they end up doing a really out of tune version of the backing. The best part of the song is the top note that no one can ever reach - but we all attempt anyway.
[EMILY] Ok, don’t hurt me, but this is the only Mariah Carey song I know: surely I can’t be the only one? Anyway this song is a Christmas banger. Everyone in the room immediately turns into a diva star and sings all the long and high notes. In my head I sound like Mariah herself - but reality would suggest otherwise.
5.Do they know it’s Christmas? – Band Aid 1984
[AILSA] Despite the song now being considered controversial, the original message behind it was extremely important. The song was created to raise money for people less fortunate in African countries. It is a great song, especially the 2014 rendition featuring the likes of One Direction, Ed Sheeran and Rita Ora.
[EMILY] This song is facing some criticism of its negative portrayal of Africa - which is fair enough, but the actual music in this song bangs. You can’t possibly dislike a classic 80s synth. The remake of this song in 2014 has more ‘politically correct’ lyrics (and One Direction) but no fun 80s instruments so this song doesn’t rank highly in my charts.
6.Happy Xmas (war is over) – John Lennon
[AILSA] I know a lot of people don’t find this song that Christmassy, but I do. There is literally no Christmas song that doesn’t make me excited for the few happiest days of the year. It is performed by the legendary John Lennon, who puts across a great political message. It is important as the winter is a particularly tough time for those who are less fortunate, so putting it in a Christmas song is a great way to raise more awareness.
[EMILY] A sweet song with a children’s choir and an important political message. Can’t say it fills me with joy and festivities like the others do, but it is a solid song from the icon John Lennon.
7.Step into Christmas – Elton John
[AILSA] This is one of the songs that really puts me in a Christmassy mood. It’s a song that puts the household into a fun atmosphere. It’s one of those songs that makes you want to dance around the garden with cousins/friends with some sparklers on any night of December.
[EMILY] I mean yeah, this song is a tune, but I can’t help but think of John Lewis when I hear this song now. To me this song now says “hurry and buy a piano from us and you too can be just like Elton John.” Maybe that’s just me being underwhelmed by the John Lewis advert this year. Annoyingly strategic marketing strategies aside, who doesn’t love this Christmas classic?
8.Wonderful Christmastime – Paul McCartney
[AILSA] This is written and sung by the talented Paul McCartney who, as you all know, was a member of The Beatles. This song is great to listen to on Christmas Eve/Day evening with your family when you’re gathered round a nice hot fire.
[EMILY] This song perfectly summarises what Christmas is all about for me. It’s not really a sing along like the best Christmas songs should be but something about this song really resonates with me. Maybe it’s the lyrics like “we’re here tonight and that’s enough” they make me appreciate the little things about Christmas. Or maybe it’s the fact I can’t dislike a song with a bit of 80s synth (this song was released in 1979, but close enough.) PS the music video looks like it was filmed on a Nintendo DS.
9.Stay another day – East 17
[AILSA] I had never heard this song before writing this article. I have to be honest, it really is not my favourite. I would say it’s ok, but I wouldn’t listen to it all the time on the run up to Christmas. The thing I like most about this song is the music video that comes with it – go check it out, I guarantee that it’ll make you laugh.
[EMILY] Ok so this song doesn’t actually mention the word “Christmas” once but hear me out: this is without a doubt one of my favourite Christmas songs ever. It has by far the best Christmas music video including: quality acting, greenscreen explosions, oversized fur coats, flattering close up shots, random woman ‘dancing’ in silk and much more. For me, a good Christmas song has to be fun to sing and perform to your loyal friends on Snapchat. This is the perfect song to do just that. You won’t regret listening to this tune. Trust me.
10.Merry Christmas everyone – Shakin’ Stevens
[AILSA] I adore this song. It is so Christmassy and puts the whole family in a good mood. It is great for friends and family to sing along with as there are some backing parts which are always fun to witness.
[EMILY] If the artist name Shakin’ Stevens doesn’t give you a good impression about this song, I don’t know what to tell you. It has a very ‘jolly’ beat and really gets you in the festive mood. This song rates quite averagely for me. It’s not amazing and it’s not boring it’s just a solid, festive Christmas song.
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