Top 12 Rockin’ Christmas Tunes

[Resident list maker Brent Chittenden‘s selections for the 12 Worst Christmas Songs Ever has created quite a bit of traffic.  In the interests of fair play, here are what he believes to be 12 of the best. – AC]

So here’s the deal. As previously stated in two past posts, I hate Christmas music. I don’t hate Christmas, in fact I really enjoy this time of year especially since a good number of my friends have kids and I get to be awesome Uncle Brent… or in the case of my niece Alexis, Uncle Scary Face.

That being said, there are a few songs that I enjoy, one even just got added to the list this year. So here it is, my Top Twelve Rockin Christmas Tunes–’cause there’s 12 days of Christmas.  Get it?


12) Dropkick Murphys – The Season’s Upon Us

The minute I heard this song, I knew it should be put on this list. In fact I may see it go up the list in upcoming years but for the moment it gets an entry position.


11) Bob & Doug – 12 Days of Christmas

Okay, so maybe this song isn’t as rocking as the others but come on, it’s Bob and Doug!


10) Lemmy, Billy Gibbons, Dave Grohl – Run, Run Rudolph

Now this actually shares this spot with the original Chuck Berry version but if you’re looking for a version of this song just soaked in booze (like Aunt Geraldine’s rum cake), you can’t beat this one.


9) The Beach Boys – Little Saint Nick

I love The Beach Boys, and maybe this is a little bit of a guilty pleasure but you’ve got to dig those harmonies.


8) U2 – Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)

I honestly think this is the best version of this song, made during the Joshua Tree era when U2 was at the height of that album cycle’s power.


7) Weird Al – The Night Santa Went Crazy

An original Weird Al tune… I wouldn’t play it around the kids though.


6) Fucked Up – Do They Know It’s Christmas Time?

I do like the original but I love this cover by Fucked Up and friends. Bob Mould, David Cross, Tegan and Sara, The Rza, Andrew W.K. and more, this is awesome! And the proceeds all went to chairity.


5) RUN DMC – Christmas in Hollis

Is it a little kitschy? Yes. Is it awesome? HELL YEAH! Many hip hop artists have come and many have gone but not one of them has done a Christmas tune with this kind of awesome.


4) Twisted Sister – I’ll Be Home For Christmas

Who would have ever thought I’d not only put Twisted Sister on one of my lists but it’d be the Best of Christmas list?


3) David Bowie & Bing Crosby – Little Drummer Boy (Peace on Earth)

Some people don’t like this version but I’m not quite sure why, it’s one of the few songs played every year that I don’t get annoyed by.  [Read more about this weird duet here. – AC]


2) Bruce Springsteen and The E Street Band – Santa Claus is Coming To Town

Bruce is so good he can play this song all year long. Seriously, he played it at Bonaroo…. seriously, in the middle of the summer. Who else can get away with that?


1) The Pogues – Fairytale of New York

I’m with Alan on this one. Out of every modern Christmas song ever made, this is possibly the best.

And that’s our Best of Christmas. I hope you all have a happy holiday season and I’ll leave you with one more video in honor of my mother, who loves Christmas… and loves Queen. Stay safe.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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