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Rockin’ Around The Christmas Tree

01:01 PM Wednesday 12/23/09 | |

It’s Dec. 23 and you’ve heard Bing Crosby, Andy Williams and Johnny Mathis extolling the virtues of the season so many times since Thanksgiving that you’re ready to drown yourself in eggnog. Don’t. There’s another option.

Just retire that collection of Christmas tunes you inherited from your parents (and grandparents) and replace it with brand spankin’ new versions.

In any given year, a handful of artists can be counted on to release holiday albums. It’s a music industry tradition that goes back more than six decades. For some reason though, 2009 seems to be the year for everybody to jump on the bandwagon (or is that sleigh?).

Holiday tunes have been arriving every Tuesday since early October and include collections by the usual suspects (Barry Manilow, Neil Diamond, Olivia Newton-John), as well as a whole bunch of surprises (Bob Dylan, Rob Halford, Tori Amos).

Here’s a head start on your new collection: free Christmas tracks by Moneypenny, The 88 and Blondie! (And since this is a time for sharing, if any of you know of other bands offering free holiday downloads, please let us know in the comments section.)

Download Moneypenny’s version of “Christmas Time Is Here.” (Or even better, snag the Chicago duo’s killer holiday collection, Spandexxxmas Mixtape ’09.)

Visit KCRW.com within the next 24 hours to download The 88’s cover of Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas Is You.”

Click here to score a free copy of Blondie’s rockin’ new version of “We Three Kings.”

Now head out to your nearest music retailer or hit your favorite online music store and score yourself of a few of these fresh takes on the season. And save the egg nog for drinking.

Tori Amos – Midwinter Graces
Chris Tomlin – Glory in the Highest
A Fine Frenzy – Oh Blue Christmas (EP)
Kermit Ruffins – Have a Crazy Cool Christmas
Northern Light Orchestra – The Spirit of Christmas
Andrea Bocelli – My Christmas
Straight No Chaser – Christmas Cheers
Pet Shop Boys – Christmas (EP)
Sting – If on a Winter’s Night
David Archuleta – Christmas From the Heart
Sugarland – “Gold and Green”
Neil Diamond – A Cherry Cherry Christmas
Bob Dylan – Christmas in the Heart
Mannheim Steamroller – Christmas 25th Anniversary Collection
Trans-Siberian Orchestra – Night Castle
Petula Clark – This Christmas
Rob Halford – Halford III – Winter Songs
Olivia Newton-John – Christmas Wish
Lee Greenwood – Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas
REO Speedwagon – Not So Silent Night
Musiq Soulchild – Christmas Musiq
Ruben Studdard – “Christmas in Your Arms” (single)
Bob Schneider – “Fairytale of New York” (single)
Carolyn Sills – “George Bailey” (single)

Comments

  1. djarw wrote:

    03:21 PM, Dec 23, 2009

    If you have not heard or purchased David Archuleta's Christmas From The Heart yet, you are missing probably the best Christmas album to be released in a long time.  It's a great album of Christmas classics and a few surprises and an original song from David Archuleta.  I love Christmas music and I really enjoy this album.