Dead Man's Christmas Playlist

Dead Man's Christmas Playlist

67 days ago

Christmas doesn’t start in our house until two things have happened. First of all, I have to hear Bruce Springsteen’s version of ‘Santa Claus is Coming to Town’ on the radio, and secondly the family has to gather to watch the Muppet Christmas Carol. The second of those is currently scheduled for Christmas Eve, while Bruce has already made his presence felt this week, not once but twice in one day – first on the Radcliffe and Maconie show on Sunday morning, then on Johnny Walker's on Sounds of the 70s (I only caught that one because my wife was the last person to use the car and had retuned the radio!)

Bruce crops up a couple of times in Dead Man Singing, but there’s no sign of his seasonal classic. We get to see Dave wallowing in his own self-pity to Joni Mitchell’s ‘River’, a very different kind of Christmas song, but just as glorious.

What makes a great Christmas song? It’s one of those questions with no right or wrong answer (unlike ‘Is Die Hard a Christmas movie?’ to which the answer is ‘no’. I’ll die on that hill). Some are irrepressible pop classics, some are poignant and beautiful, some – like Bruce’s timeless classic – simply rock joyously. I was going to try to put together a Dave Masters Christmas playlist, but decided in the end just to offer you a selection of great Christmas tunes that reflect my taste rather than his. Hopefully there will be a few songs here that you haven’t come across before, as well as a few familiar favourites (though I’ve tried to avoid most of the more ubiquitous ones – there’s no room here for Slade, Mariah Carey, Wizard or even the Pogues and Kirsty MacColl, not that I don't enjoy many of the evergreen Christmas classics.)

You can find the playlist here or peruse the track listing below. If I’ve missed a little-known favourite of yours, feel free to throw it into the comments and I might even add it to the playlist (or not, depending how the mood takes me).

Here’s the track listing:

  • Bruce Springsteen: Santa Claus is Coming to Town
  • Frank Sinatra: Jingle Bells
  • Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings: White Christmas
  • Low: Just Like Christmas
  • Slow Club: Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)
  • Fountains of Wayne: I Want An Alien for Christmas
  • The Housemartins: Caravan of Love
  • U2: Peace on Earth
  • Sufjan Stevens: Get Behind Me, Santa!
  • Bob Dylan: Must Be Santa
  • Stevie Wonder: Someday At Christmas
  • The Waitresses: Christmas Wrapping
  • Barclay James Harvest: Hymn
  • Steve Wonder: What Christmas Means to Me
  • Julian Casablancas: I Wish It Was Christmas Today

Merry Christmas to you and yours.


Image credit: "Santa playing guitar" by andy michael2012 is licensed under CC BY 2.0. To view a copy of this license, click here




His ep is the best Christmas eve of this century.


Always loved this.

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