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Vote Now: Your Take on Holiday Travel Tunes

John Deiner

How many times can you hear Jose Feliciano's "Feliz Navidad" before you want to bash in your radio? Hopefully, it's a lot, because that's the No. 1 holiday song that was playing last week nationwide, according to Mediaguide, whch keeps track of such things.

In today's Escapes column in the Style section, I paid a visit to whatever town was at the I-95 exit where 97.1 (WASH-FM) -- a Washington station that plays all Christmas all the time -- faded away in my car. Turns out it was neat little Aberdeen, Md., home to Cal Ripken's IronBirds and the Aberdeen Proving Ground.

But I was also wondering what travelers will be listening to the most while they're visiting Grandma and other family members. Mediaguide's list of the Top 10 has been fairly consistent the past few weeks; the songs listed below should be extremely familiar to listeners.



By John Deiner |  December 19, 2007; 7:03 AM ET  | Category:  John Deiner
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My heavy-rotation list this year features "It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year" and Otis Redding's "White Christmas", from the Love Actually Soundtrack.

Worst Christmas song EVAR (aside from the whole Chipmunks Christmas album): Santa Baby. Listening to it makes me feel soiled. I just want to slap that tacky gold digger. Who wants a light-blue convertible, anyway?

Posted by: csdiego | December 19, 2007 9:32 AM

I've been feeling pretty misanthropic this holiday season: new personal favorite Christmas tune is "Father Christmas" by The Kinks. It's the story of a shopping mall Santa who gets mugged by a bunch of "little rich boys." In the course of beating him up, they tell him to keep the Monopoly money, "we only want the real McCoy."

When I'm in a better mood, I tend towards "The Christmas Song" or religious carols (this being a major Christian holiday and all). But when I'm crammed on the subway, just trying to get home from work, and somebody shoves on with umpteen shopping bags from stores I can't afford and looks at me like I've just invaded *their* space, I get kinda misanthropic.

Posted by: BxNY | December 19, 2007 10:04 AM

My favorite Christmas radio song is "Merry Christmas Baby" by the Carpenters. It reminds me of my mom, which is nice because we don't live close to each other. My favorite Christmas song overall is "O Holy Night" which always gives me chills.

Posted by: Jenn in NJ | December 19, 2007 11:32 AM

Oooh! I have to go read your Escape column, since its all about where I live now! (Moved here a year ago from Fairfax)

My favorite holiday song is the version of God Rest Ye Merry, Gentleman by the Barenaked Ladies and Sarah McLaughlin. Beautiful, haunting, yet perky and upbeat. The whole Barenaked Ladies Holiday album is great for the whole family. My parents love it, my kids love it. And its spans both Christmas and Channaka, plus has a great version of Auld Lang Syn

Posted by: RT | December 19, 2007 1:50 PM

Just a quick question - why did you only list secular music? Are you afraid of offending someone by adding a few religious hymns? I'm not very religious, but the you don't have to have certain beliefs to find "Angels We Have Heard on High" or "O Holy Night or "Silent Night" absolutely beautiful to listen to.

Posted by: highceediva | December 19, 2007 3:39 PM

My favorite Christmas tune ever ( but never heard on the radio) is Marlene Dietrick's version of Little Drummer Boy in German. I have it on vinyl, an old Capitol records compilation from the 60's ( along with some other gems from Bing ( Hark the Hearold) Ella, Johnny Mathis, and even Ernie Ford. But I have always loved the Drummer Boy since I first heard it when I was 5. The sexiest Christmas song EVER. As far as Radio play, I love the Hippopotamus song.

Posted by: rja112 | December 20, 2007 1:40 AM

I have lots of favorites, traditional and otherwise. Some that weren't on your list were:

Little Drummer Boy - Both Harry Simone Corale and Bing and Bowie versions.

Do You Hear What I Hear - Bing

On lighter notes:

Santa Claus is Coming to Town - Bruce Springsteen

Marvelous Toy - Peter Paul and Mary

Snoopy's Christmas - Royal Guardsman

Santa Baby - Eartha Kitt is the only good version of this one.

One I'm sick and tired of hearing:

Christmas Shoes

Posted by: CALSGR8 | December 20, 2007 3:02 AM

For the car? Holiday Road, of course!

Posted by: sdgal | December 20, 2007 9:36 AM

Great stuff here. But I wanted to respond to highceediva, who asks an interesting question. I didn't pick the tunes on the list -- they're the songs that are most-played on the radio, according to Mediaguide. I actually hear Josh Groban's "O Holy Night" every 15 minutes on the radio, so I sort of expected that one to be on the list.

And as far as "Holiday Road" and the Griswolds go, is there a better, funnier Christmas movie than "Christmas Vacation?" Well, is there?!?

Posted by: John Deiner | December 20, 2007 10:53 AM

I like "Dominic the Christmas Donkey."

Posted by: Kelly | December 21, 2007 12:08 PM

My favorite is "Lo, How a Rose E'er Blooming" especially sung in harmony.

The ultimate worst Christmas song is: Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer, especially when a couple of 12 year olds get contol of the CD player and play it over, and over, and over, and...

Posted by: karen howell | December 25, 2007 2:59 PM

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