Iggy's Jukebox

1.

Phil Spector’s Christmas Album (1963)

Way back before he started shooting people, Phil Spector put together the greatest Christmas album yet recorded. Ok, it’s not a song, but if I just listed the ten tracks from this album (Baby Please Come Home, Marshmallow World, etc, etc, etc) then this top ten list would be finished right there.

2.

Barenaked Ladies - Elf's Lament (2004)

My new favorite Christmas song. A gentle homily to the lot of an elf. Long hours, low pay, repetitive work, but hey, it's a living. And you can dance to it!

3.

John Lennon – Happy Xmas (War is Over) (1971)

Further proof (not that any is needed) that John was the greatest Beatle: He’s the only one with a song on this list. After John and Yoko had a big hit with Happy Christmas (covered by dozens of artists; but avoid the Celine Dion version at all costs), Paul released his own Christmas single, Wonderful Christmastime, which has only been covered once in 20 years (and by Hilary Duff of all people). Nobody has ever covered the B-Side of that single, Rudolph the Red Nosed Reggae (I swear that I did not make that up).

4.

Wham – Last Christmas (1986):

Last Christmas he gave you his heart, now this Christmas George Michael finds himself all alone in a public washroom. Christmas can be like that.

5.

Bowser and Blue – Hey Santa! (1997)

You never hear this song on the radio at Christmastime. Perhaps because of excessive use of the F word (no, not Festive or Figs or Fa la la la la la la la la. The other F word). But, you can see the Christmas special on the CBC every year, with all the F words intact. But not on the radio. Just TV.

6.

Bruce Springsteen - Santa Claus is Coming to Town (1985)

Before Britney and Justin and Christina were even born, the Boss made a Christmas record. And it rocks. You bet you better watch out.

7.

Chris de Burgh - A Spaceman Came Travelling (1975)

What would Christmas be without spacemen singing songs? Yeah, that's the real meaning of Christmas. And as an extra special Christmas bonus, if you want to hear me playing this song on my Wurlitzer organ, then try clicking here

8.

The Rovers – Gramma Got Run Over By a Reindeer (1982)

The lyrics are sheer poetry: “Now the goose is on the table/and the pudding made of fig/and the blue and silver candles/that would just have matched the hair on grandma's wig.” Sublime.

9.

The Pogues - Fairytale of New York (1988)

This rousing Christmas tune is more Irish than New Yorkish and more of a jig than a carol, but I still like it a lot.

10.

Sir Elton John - Step Into Christmas (1973)

Lots of pop stars do Christmas songs, and this one is a catchy tune, but what really makes it stick out is that on the B-Side there is a little treasure called Ho! Ho! Ho! (Who'd Be A Turkey At Christmas) which is even better and is almost impossible to find. Even though Santa hates being called the "Bearded Weirdy", he still likes the song, too.



Other Worthwhile Christmas Tunes

Not enough for you? Some other ones you could include on your Xmas Mix are Dido - Christmas Day (2000), which is mournful and sweet, SheDaisy - Santa's Got a Brand New Bag (2002), which is pretty good for a country group and also Britney Spears - My Only Wish This Year(2000) which is pretty funky (and Britney is pretty, well, pretty) although it should surprise nobody that all Britney wants for Christmas is a man. And even though it embarasses me to say it, I also like Hanson - What Christmas Means To Me (1997).