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  • Writer's pictureJamie Dixon

15 Christmas Songs You (Probably) Haven't Heard Of

Updated: Dec 23, 2021

Change It Up This Christmas, Find A New Christmas Tune Right Here

Ah, Christmas music. It's fun, it's festive, it's part of the norm this time of year. If you don't want to hear it, you can't help but feel a bit like a Grinch.

And people really STILL want to hear the same stuff, year after year after year? I mean, we get it guys. That Jingle Bell isn't exactly Rocking anymore, it's more like a limp shuffle.

If you need to fake some holiday spirit so that your family doesn't disown you, we're here to help. We've got a whole list of fun Christmas music you aren't sick of yet - in fact, you may not have heard most of these songs before.

These aren't your generic classics that have been burned into your head since third grade. You can listen to these for some good Christmas vibes, without worrying that your head might explode if you hear one more chorus of "Santa Claus Is Coming To Town". And who knows, you might actually find some genuine Christmas cheer along the way.

1. We Are The Union, "I'm Working Retail For Christmas"

This one is a whole mood right here. If you're sick of the Christmas commercialization, this clever ditty is bound to speak to your soul. And what's Christmas without a little ska? If anything's going to bring your spirits up, you can count on this to pick it up, pick it up, pick it up (see what I did there?)

2. Norah Jones, "Christmas Calling (Jolly Jones)"

A sweet and simple song in classic Norah Jones style. Her voice is like a warm, comforting blanket - something you might desperately need this time of year.

3. DMX, "Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer"

Okay, technically, this IS one of those old classics. But just imagine the fresh spin DMX could put on this tired jam. Now multiply it by 10, and you're welcome.

4. Abba, "Little Things"

A new single off their recent 2021 album Voyage, this is a gentle vision of Christmas morning. Backed by a children's choir, the song is calm, complacent, and celebrates Christmas reduced to its simplistic core.

5. Carrie Underwood, "Stretchy Pants"

This little bit of comic relief is a welcome change from the traditional holiday schmaltz. Underwood sings of the joy and glory of overeating the Christmas meal, and there's no shame in her game. "Spandex and Lycra, you better work it for me, cause I'm about to expand this band of elasticity," she declares resolutely. You tell 'em, girl.

6. Neon Trees, "Holiday Rock"

I'm not gonna lie, guys. I had to double-check to make sure this one was original. It's such an "instant classic" that I almost thought it was a re-working of the standard holiday fare.

But no, despite the fact that it sounds like a Christmas epic, this is a brand new offering by Neon Trees. And it's a bop, so I expect it to start getting some heavy rotation in future holiday seasons.

7. Blondie and Fab 5 Freddy, "Yuletide Throwdown"

Technically it's not new - this was originally released in 1981. But you probably totally missed it. In fact, Blondie (Debbie Harry) only recently rediscovered the track herself.

It might sound familiar - this was the earliest incarnation of what would later become the hit "Rapture". But at the beginning, the song was slower, and the first version was actually a Christmas song!

8. ASHBA, "A Christmas Storm"

Want a fresh take on some old classics? Here you go. This is a lively instrumental re-imagining of "God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen", and it slaps.

9. Jamie Cullum, "Hang Your Lights"

This is an infectiously fun song, with a big band influence and jazzy theatrics. It's not like the usual holiday fare, and that's what makes it so catchy. Plus, if you like it, there's more where that came from. Callum has an entire album, The Pianoman At Christmas.

10. Olivia O'Brien, "It's Christmas Time"

This is pretty much an anthem for anyone who has a hard time finding their holiday spirit - but really wants to. If Christmas just doesn't mean much to you anymore, but you're determined to feel it this year, give this a listen. It might help you find the headspace.

11. Tori Kelly, "25th"

I'm not sure why Tori Kelly doesn't get more attention. She's got a hefty set of pipes and her vocals are on point. If you like Mariah's classic Christmas jam, this is a similar diva-esque display. Chances are good you haven't heard it, which is shocking - Kelly's a treasure.

12. Carly Rae Jepsen, "It's Not Christmas Till Somebody Cries"

If a crazy family cast makes holidays a bit of a struggle for you, you might enjoy this flippant tribute to dysfunction. It's a spirited and fun look at angsty family gatherings. Sometimes being home for the holidays feels like a trap - and yet would we have it any other way?

13. Dolly Parton and Michael Buble, "Cuddle Up, Cozy Down Christmas"

This is basically a direct answer for people who are tired of "Baby, It's Cold Outside." Want a cutesy duet about a man and woman forced to spend Christmas getting a bit intimate while the weather howls outside? Turns out, there's more than one option in that very specific niche. Who knew?

14. Idina Menzel Featuring Ariana Grande, "A Hand For Mrs. Claus"

Unique for a few reasons, namely:

  • It has Broadway musical vibes

  • It reminds us that Santa isn't the only one working around here - let's give Mrs. Claus the respect she deserves!

15. Ne-Yo, "Just Ain't Christmas"

Ne-Yo is another one of those underappreciated artists. He's written for heavy-hitters like Beyonce, Rhianna, Whitney Houston, and Celine Dion. So why he doesn't get more notice for his own work is a genuine mystery.

But if you want some smooth Christmas jams with an RB flavor, then check out his holiday album, Another Kind Of Christmas. About half the songs are originals by the man himself. The other half of the album is Christmas classics, respun in Ne-Yo's classic style. Below, check out a single off the album, "Just Ain't Christmas."

Find a new favorite from this list? Let us know on our socials!



Even better, share with your friends and spread some holiday cheer!

Jamie Dixon is a contributing writer here at The Pyrrhic. She's a content writer by profession, but this is more fun. She's also working on her first novel in her spare time.

Find her on Twitter @onegirloneblog

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