We’re in an all-Christmas-music-all-the-time mode around here (minus the occasional playing of the Philadelphia Chickens CD).  The boys love holiday music, and they come by that honestly.   Every year, the day after Thanksgiving finds me busting out my Christmas CDs and getting into a holly jolly mood.  (I know, I know; technically, it’s the Advent season, not the Christmas season, but a month of “O Come O Come Emmanuel” gets rather tedious.)   It’s a short season, and I make the most of it.

Over the years, I’ve developed a few personal favorites in the carol department.

1) Andy Williams singing Mary’s Little Boy Child.  I know that Harry Belafonte sang it first — and his rendition is amazing — but the Andy Williams version makes me remember Christmases as a kid, and the record my parents had showing Andy smiling genially against a green background.  (I have more to say about Andy Williams, who passed away a few months ago, but that will have to wait for a  longer post).

2) I Saw Three Ships, sung by just about anyone.  It always lifts my spirits and makes me want to drink a cup of wassail while standing under a Victorian lamppost somewhere.

3)  We Need a Little Christmas, from the musical Mame.  It’s the perfect song to start humming in the days after Thanksgiving, and it’s nearly impossible not to sing along once you’ve heard it a few times.

4)  I adore Hayley Westenra’s version of “The Little Road to Bethlehem.”   It’s so sweet and so melodic.

5) The Angels’ Carol by John Rutter.  It’s exquisitely beautiful, both the tune and the lyrics.  This song and a crackling fire and a cup of tea: the perfect recipe for feeling glowy and warm, inside and out.

What’s your favorite Christmas carol?  Can you pick just one?

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