Arts & Culture, Featured, Spotlight

Our Staff Presents: Christmas Music That Rocks

This year, The Rock at Boston College is doing the season of joy in a big way by generating new content every day in our first ever “25 Days of Christmas”. The Rock is proud to present this installment in our holiday special.

It’s hard to imagine the Christmas season without music–from the traditional hymns to overplayed holiday hits to the new spins on old classics, everyone has a favorite tune that puts them in the holiday mood.  As part of our 25 Days of Christmas special, we here at The Rock at Boston College have compiled a list of our favorite Christmas songs.  So if finals have you down or you just need a little Christmas, put on one of these great songs and get into the spirit!


“Do They Know It’s Christmas?” – Band Aid (1984)
“This song was released in 1984 as a part of a plan to raise money for efforts to help the poverty stricken people of Ethiopia. Ignoring the fact that this song has a good purpose, let me also tell you some of the people who participated in it: Bono, of U2; Boy George, of Culture Club; Sting, of The Police (I don’t know about the rest of you, but those three were my childhood in a nutshell!) and many more musicians. It’s a fun song, it’s for a good cause, and it’s great to sing along to!” – Saidhbhe Berry ‘17

“Oh Holy Night” – Bastille
“O Holy Night is a traditional Christmas carol one would hear sung by a church choir. This version comes from one of British indie quartet Bastille’s experimental mixtapes. The intro and conclusion have audio clips from Home Alone, another classic Christmas tradition for many, and lead singer Dan Smith’s vocals make for a hauntingly beautiful cover.” – Danielle Dybbro ‘15

“Christmas Lights” – Coldplay
“This is a gorgeous song brought to you by the British blokes who gave us ‘The Scientist’, ‘Viva La Vida’ and ‘Paradise’ to name a few.  It’s not your typical upbeat Christmas tune, but it speaks a lot of truth about the sadness that some people feel during the holidays, and how something simple and cheerful can make us forget our troubles and remind us of the joy of the season.”  – Kate Lewis ‘15

“All I Want for Christmas is You” – Michael Bublé
“Michael Bublé, all I want for Christmas is YOU. This song is a stripped-down version of Mariah Carey’s modern classic, and for an iconic, not-often-covered-well song, Michael does it justice and then some. It’s more emotional, more romantic, and beautifully orchestrated. Picture a snowy night in front of a fireplace with hot chocolate just as you’re drifting off to sleep – this is the song you’d want in the background.” – Melissa Warten ‘16

“Welcome Christmas” – Dr. Seuss’s How the Grinch Stole Christmas!
“As a youngster I probably watched Dr. Seuss’s animated Christmas classic “How the Grinch Stole Christmas!” over 50 times. During the season, I’d watch it back to back and act like it was the first time I’d ever heard the songs or seen the way the Grinch grew his heart three sizes that day. I kept the old video cassette on the shelf right next to the VCR so I could watch it as many times as I pleased. The intro was my favorite, when all the Whos came together to welcome the Christmas season.” – Christian Petro ‘15

“Let it Snow! Let it Snow! Let it Snow!” – Dean Martin
“Yes, that is the actual full title of the song, and yes it is a mouthful, but I don’t care. I’m a sucker for classic songs, and Dean Martin’s vocals and the band behind him make a jazzy, swinging, upbeat sound that always put me in an incredible mood. It’s always the first Christmas song I play every year, and I’ll have it on repeat for weeks.” – Chris Pinto ’16

“Mi Burrito Sabanero” (“The Donkey from Bethlehem”)
“Everyone in Miami knows this song!  It’s my favorite only because I grew up listening to it–it’s a quirky Latin American hit that hails the holiday season.” – Thais Menendez ’14

“Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing” – Mumford & Sons
“A classic Catholic Christmas tune gets a twist put on it as Mumford provides its own cover to it.  The folk aspect blends perfectly with the underlying tones that run through the songs, and Marcus Mumford’s voice provides a raw power that just sends shivers down your spine.  After every listen it leaves me with goosebumps, and really reminds me what the season is all about.” – Joseph Dorion ‘17

“Gesù Bambino” – Luciano Pavarotti
“When I was little, I went to my older brother’s concerts, plays, etc. all of the time. He has always been a performer, and my favorite performance of his was at one of his high school Christmas concerts. He was mostly known in high school for playing the saxophone, but at this concert he sang the English version of ‘Gesù Bambino’, a beautiful song that most know from Luciano Pavarotti’s version. Whenever I hear it I think of how proud I was of my brother that night, how beautifully he sang, how much I love my family, and of course, of what we should all think about around Christmas: God’s love.” – Erin Sutton ’16

“White Christmas” – Otis Redding
“Although this Irving Berlin original is usually attributed to its popular Bing Crosby performance, I’ve always been partial to this Otis Redding version. Redding brings in his unique soul twist to the song, giving it a bittersweet and beautiful feel. As someone that has spent her Brazilian childhood dreaming of a ‘White Christmas’ and all it entailed, I turned to this timeless classic to find that magic instead.”  – Bia Lyrio ’14

“Last Christmas” – Taylor Swift
“This Christmas classic combines two of my favorite things: Taylor Swift and Christmas songs. This heartfelt song of nostalgia and heartbreak has a catchy tune that will make you want to sing along. Until Hunter Hayes comes out with a Christmas song (hopefully at the CMA Country Christmas Special), this one will remain one of my favorites.” – Meagan McCarthy ‘14

“Christmas Eve/Sarajevo 12/24” – Trans-Siberian Orchestra
“This is one of those songs that either irritates you completely or gives you a reason to rock out in the car. In my case, I jam out. My mother loves the original “Carol of the Bells,” so it was always playing in my house and in the car around Christmastime when I grew up. When I heard this updated, guitar-heavy version, I knew it would be an instant favorite for me. This song takes a pretty, melodic Christmas tune and amps it up a notch. It’s an unexpected cover that is just different enough to stand out amongst all the soft songs that play during the Christmas season.” – Jamie Spagnuolo ‘15

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