C is for Carols

Seeing as Christmas is so close, I decided to be festive and list my top ten Christmas Carols (I’ve omitted many songs which I just don’t consider carols even though they are songs entrenched in Christmas). Lyrically Carols are far more religious than any other type of Christmas song so it may seem strange that a non-religious person like myself would enjoy them. However, it is impossible not to be touched by the strength of feeling behind a sincere performance by a good group of carol singers.

There is something about hearing the passion of a person for something they care deeply about (whether that be religious or otherwise) which cannot be beaten for intensity of human emotion. What’s greater is when a bunch of these individuals come together – you can just hear the oneness (if that makes sense).

Anyway, here are my choices. They’re in no certain order, either.

10 – O Holy Night – I can’t think what I don’t like about this song – especially Josh Groban’s cover of it. The part that goes “fall on your knees, oh hear the angels’ voices” sends chills up my spine every time. So good.

9 – O Tannenbaum (or O Christmas Tree in English) – I love the amazing Jazzy version by The Vince Guaraldi Trio which opens the soundtrack to A Charlie Brown Christmas.

8 – We Wish You A Merry Christmas – A song which is best sung loud with a crowd of people. It’s probably the most fun carol out there. (It’s also probably the least religious out there)

7 – Away In A Manger – A carol which is really only good when sung in association with a child’s nativity play but when done well can be absolutely beautiful.

6 – The Twelve Days of Christmas – There’s not much to be said about this other than to laugh at the fact everyone who has ever heard this song ever knows to sing along as loud as they possibly can at the line FIVE GOLDEN RINGS!!!!

5 – Adeste Fideles (O Come All Ye Faithful) – This is a strange one since most of the song is a bit too religious for me but there is something quite invigorating about the way the line “Oh come let us adore him!” rises to the occasion.

4 – We Three Kings Of Orient Are – I included this purely because it’s one carol which I have fond memories of singing when I was at school and it always seems to bring a smile to my face.

3 – Carol Of The Bells – Also known as that scary carol amongst some of my friends.

2 – God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen – Well I suppose the reason I like this so much is all down to this version I found on a Simon & Garfunkel compilation which I think is the strangest reason for any of the songs on this list. On there it’s called “Comfort and Joy.”

1 – Silent Night – It had to be really. I can’t think of any other that even comes close to the beauty of this.