Every year, I open the ole iTunes Christmas playlist to see what the season is gonna sound like this time around. I grew up with a steady diet of Mannheim Steamroller that my dad would ritualistically pull out on Christmas Day. I’m not gonna hate on the Steamroller and their epic rendition of Deck the Halls, but in the last several years I’ve been determined to piece together Christmas music that I actually enjoy listening to. I noticed that several sites were giving away FREE music, so here are some links to music that I think you’ll enjoy too.
FREE CHRISTMAS MUSIC RUNDOWN:
- Sleeping At Last – Christmas Collection 2012 – This is a fantastic full-length Christmas record from singer-songwriter Ryan O’Neale. For fans of Nick Drake and Bon Iver. I’m a huge fan of Sleeping At Last’s other records and I know you’ll enjoy this one.
- Sufjan Stevens – Silver & Gold (NoiseTrade Sampler) If you’re looking for traditional Christmas music, then don’t waste your time clicking on the link. For those who like the obscure, avant-garde sounds of Sufjan, here is a sampler that you can download for free. The full version (58 tracks) is available for $15 here.
- Beta Radio – The Songs the Season Brings Vol. 2 – This sampler is only 3 songs, but hey….they’re free. Beautiful indie-folk arrangements of the songs we know and love. For fans of Mumford & Sons. You can pick up Beta Radio’s sampler from last year here. I went ahead and bought it.
- Rosie Thomas – A Very Rosie Christmas Sampler – in 2006, Megan and I did our first dance to a Rosie Thomas song, so it was great to see that she released a Christmas record. Beautiful vocals with quirky music.
- Anthony Skinner – Christmas Morning EP – Anthony has been a friend for the last few years. He writes killer worship tunes, and is one of the most soulful worship leaders I know of. This album is stunning.
- A Very Relevant Christmas – a Christmas sampler from Relevant Magazine that requires a quick and free subscription to their website. Worth your time.
- 22 Indie Rock Christmas MP3’s from 2011 – A great list featuring free downloads from She & Him, Damien Jurado, & My Morning Jacket. Some really great renditions of Christmas songs by bands you probably haven’t heard of (yes….I just played the Hipster card).
MUSIC YOU HAVE TO PAY FOR:
- Phil Wickham – Songs for Christmas
- Hillsong – We Have a Savior
- Future of Forestry – Advent Christmas EP, Vol. 2
- The Brilliance – Advent Vol.2
What are your favorite Christmas albums?
What other albums would you add to this list??
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