People from all around the (Christian) world listen to more or less the same popular hits like "Last Christmas", "White Christmas" and "All I want for Christmas is you" but every country have their own cultural differences and especially Christmas is celebrated very differently around the world - so are the type of songs that are being played.
Outside of the international (US/UK) songs each country listen to a great set of domestic music treasures as well. This playlist is an attempt to get a glimpse of what people from all around the world listen to during Christmas.
This is an attempt to share some information about each song and why it has been chosen to this playlist. In many cases the song is representative for an entire region or cultural region, for example Spanish "Villancico"-songs or Slavic "Kolyadka"-songs, that are popular in many countries. Please note that the playlist is extended and the song order can be adjusted without this text being updated directly.
|1.||A Todos Um Bom Natal||Coro de Santo Amaro de Oeiras||Portugal||Written in 1980 by César Batalha and Lúcia Carvalho for this particular children's choir it is now a very popular Christmas song in Portugal.|
|2.||Petit Papa Noël||Tino Rossi||France||Written already in 1946 by Tino Rossi and became famous through the movie "Destins". This is the most sold single of all times in France!|
|3.||Christmas in Killarney||The Irish Rovers||Ireland||An Irish Christmas song frmo 1950 by John Redmond, James Cavanaugh, and Frank Weldon that has becomesom blivit populär även utanför Irland men inspelningar av bland annat Bing Crosby. Denna version av Irish Rovers är en av de mer populära.|
|4.||Щедрик||Male Vocal Ensemble "Valaam"||Ukraine||You might recognize this as "Hark hear the bells"! The original is an old 'kolyadka' (Slavic traditional song) från from pre-Christian times!|
|5.||Tänd ett ljus||Triad||Sweden||An a capella pop song that is played all throughout Christmas. The titles translates to "Light a candle" and the song is about keeping hope even in dark times.|
|5.||Hallelujah||Leonard Cohen||Canada||A very popular and well-known song that was not written as a Christmas song but in many ways have become one. It was created by Canada's own Leonard Cohen but have since been recorded in many different versions. Canada has, off course, a huge contribution to the Christmas music scene so this is just one pick.|
|6.||O Tannenbaum||Vienna Boys Choir||Germany||Everyone knows about this song and it is probably translated to every language in the Christian world. The song is a tradtitional folk song from German whose modern lyrics were written in 1824. The original text is actually not referring to the Christmas tree but the song has become strongly associated with Christmas trees, especially in English.|
|7.||Ya Viene el Niñito||Los Chiquiltines||Ecuador||A typical 'Villancico' (Spanish traditional song) from Ecuador.|
|8.||雪人不见了||4 golden princess||China||The title is translated to "The snowman who disappeared" and is about the life of a snowman and how he one day suddenly disappears. It is a catchy children's song from China that you will keep humming all throughout the holidays!|
|9.||Caru Gesu Bambino||Andrea Bocelli||Italy||Traditional Italian Christmas song performed by Italys own Andrea Bocelli.|
|10.||Himmel på jord||Kurt Nilsen||Norway||One of the most played Christmas songs in Norway. A beautiful ballad from 2008 by Kurt Nilsen.|
|11.||White wine in the sun||Tim Minchin||Australia||A very popular Christmas pop song with lyrics about celebrating Christmas in Australia in the middle of the summer.|
|12.||Betelehemu||Wendell Whalum||Nigeria||A traditional Christmas song from Nigeria, here sung by a powerful, African men's choir.|
|13.||S Nami Bog||Divna Ljubojevic||Russia||The title translates to "Gud is with us" which is a historical motto for Russia. This beautiful song is very popular, especially within the Orthodox church.|
|14.||Højt fra træets grønne top||Eventyrteatrets Børn||Danmark||A well known happy Danish Christmas song from 1847 whose jolly up-tempo beat catches on easily.|
|15.||Feliz Navidad||José Feliciano||Puerto Rico||One of the most beloved Christmas songs of them all is this tune from 1970 by José Feliciano. It is a simple but oh so catchy song in both English and Spanish, which is suitable for Puerto Rico. Then, tt doesn't much that Puerto Rico, technically, isn't a nation of its own - it still makes this list.|
|16.||Arhiminia ki arhihronia||Byzantine Chorus||Greece|
|17.||Štědrej večer nastal||Dětský sbor||Czech Republic||Traditional Czech Christmas song. Christmas Eve in Czech is called 'Štedrý veče' which can be translated to "Generous night", the night in which you give generously to one another.|
|18.||Sinterklaas Kapoentje||Sinterklaasliedjes||The Netherlands||A Dutch classic, typically sung by children in the beginning of the Sinterklaas-celebrations around Christmas.|
|19.||Santa Claus (do you ever come to the ghetto)||Carlene Davis||Jamaica||A Caribbean classic with reggae-tones with a dose of social criticism. It is very popular not only in Jamaica but allthroughout the Caribbean.|
|20.||Shiroi Koibito Tachi||Shota Shimizu||Japan||A well known Christmas song in Japan.|
|21.||Los Peces en el Rio||Los Niños Cantores de Prado||Spain||One of the most popular 'Villancicos' of Spain. A song of which there are numerous recordings. The song is about how Virgin Mary cleans the clothes of her child in the river.|
|22.||Varpunen jouluaamuna||Suvi Teräsniska||Finland||A poem ("Sparven om julmorgonen" by Zacharias Topelius) that has been composed into music and is now a common Christmas song in Finland.|
|23.||Slava vo višnjih Bogu||Kraljevska pevačka družina Rukovet||Serbia|
|24.||Amarga Navidad||José Alfredo Jimenez||Mexico||Typical Mexican "ranchera"-song which translates into "Bitter Christmas".|
|25.||Jólasveinar ganga um gólf||Barnakór Öldutúnsskóla||Iceland||A popular Icelandic Christmas song, or 'jólalag' as it is called on Iceland.|
|26.||Siyabonga Jesu||Solly Mahlangu||South Africa|
|27.||Bog Sie Rodzi||Ryszard Rynkowski||Poland|
|28.||Fairouz Talj Talj||Fairuz||Lebanon|
|29.||Merry Xmas Everybody||Slade||United Kingdom||How do you pick a Christmas song from the UK. A country that has given us internationally popular hits like Paul McCartney's "Wonderful Christmastime", Lennon/Yoko Ono's "War is over", Wham's "Last Christmas" and Band Aid's "Do they know it's Christmas" (which did in fact include Irish artists) and thousands of other Christmas songs? This song, recorded in 1973, is a classic that is a bit of an odd contribution to the Christmas music scene as it is a (glam) rock song - and an incredibly popular one as well.|
This playlist is a mix of Christmas songs and music styles where some are Christmas Carols, other pop songs and yet others are children's songs. The effort has been to get one of the most popular songs from the country but I have also taken variety of styles into consideration. If you want to read more about christmas carols from each country then have a look at this article on Wikipedia about Christmas Carols. It is an interesting read!
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