Here are my top picks for holiday music listening whilst doing all the holiday chores, decorating, crafting, gift wrapping, cooking and cleaning that needs to be done… and these also work well as accompaniment to the holiday eating & drinking that is sure to follow…

As everyone must know by now; A Very She & Him Christmas is at the very tip-top of the heap of holiday albums this year and possibly many years past.  This collection of classic tunes are sung in warm-hearted new renditions by Zooey Deschanel that rival many of the tried and true classic forms.  The only slight disappointment is that “Baby It’s Cold Outside” doesn’t work as charmingly as it did when Deschanel sang it in that memorable shower scene in the movie ELF.  But that doesn’t effect the overall delight of this charming album that I can’t seem to stop playing on my ipod.

The UK-based trio; The Puppini Sisters, released a Christmas album last year that needs a mention here in case anyone missed out on it.  Christmas With The Puppini Sisters  is a delight and a MUST if you love festive, retro music.  Their glowing, three-part harmonies can not fail to wow you.  And they do such fun, vintage cover songs that they will keep your holiday party hopping and a’bopping along on a cold, winter’s night!

It seems odd to place Kate Bush’s new album; 50 Words For Snow into any sort of list of similar, seasonal music since there is nothing in her music that sounds like anything that anyone has ever heard before.  For years I have kept her 1979 song December Will Be Magic on my holiday music rotations (Here’s a Facebook page devoted to only that song alone) I’ve spent  whole evenings scouring the internet for rare video clips of the 70s-80s Christmas specials she sang and danced in.  Her great love for this time of year is no surprise.  This album is her current take on this favorite season where she has limited herself to including only songs that reference snow, ice and wintertime.   Just don’t be fooled into thinking this is anywhere near a ordinary holiday/seasonal album.   Each new composition is as singular and original an experience as falling, being blown, wind swept up and crystalized into a little snowflake of music where no two can ever be alike.