Do you want to know the perfect Christmas song playlist that has all of your favorite songs?
You can create an endless list of different types of songs for everyone on your Christmas gift list. The key is finding a good mix between slow and fast tempo, classic and modern-day hits, oldies but goodies from decades ago, instruments played in the background to vocals at the forefront.
This guide will teach you what makes a great song to be added to this playlist:
Top Christmas songs in 2021
Christmas songs are ranked based on the number of times they have been downloaded. This is because these songs are often listened to during the holiday season.
1. Mariah Carey – All I Want For Christmas Is You
All I Want For Christmas Is You is a song written and recorded by American pop/R&B singer Mariah Carey for her 1994 album Merry Christmas. It was the first single released from the album and became the best-selling Christmas/holiday song of all time in the US, according to Billboard.
2. Wham! – Last Christmas
Wham! is a British pop group formed in 1981. The band’s final hit “Last Christmas” was released in 1984 and peaked at number 2 on the UK Singles Chart.
3. East 17 – Stay Another Day
This is a song by English pop group East 17. It was released as the first single from their self-titled debut album on 21 November 1994. The song reached number one in the UK Singles Chart.
4. Bing Crosby – White Christmas
“White Christmas” is a song sung by Bing Crosby and written by Irving Berlin. The song was first recorded in 1941, on his NBC radio show. It became one of the best-selling singles of all time.
5. The Pogues and Kirsty MacColl – Fairytale of New York
The Pogues and Kirsty MacColl famously recorded a cover of the traditional Irish folk song “Fairytale of New York” in 1987. The song, which was originally written by Irish singer-songwriter Jem Finer for his band The Pogues, tells the story of a couple who are celebrating Christmas Eve in New York City.
6. The Waitresses – Christmas Wrapping
“Christmas Wrapping” is a Christmas song by the Waitresses, an American new wave band. It was originally published on ZE Records’ 1981 compilation album A Christmas Record and is also featured on the Waitresses’ 1982 EP I Could Rule the World If I Could Only Get the Parts, as well as several Christmas holiday compilation albums.
7. Band Aid – Do They Know It’s Christmas?
Bob Geldof and Midge Ure’s 1984 response to the Ethiopian famine was a PR machine of historic proportions, with involvement from Phil Collins, Sting, Macca, and Bono. It actually succeeded – ‘Do They Know It’s Christmas?’ spent five weeks at the top of the UK chart, making it the decade’s biggest triumph. Put that aside, it’s also a fantastic (and unexpectedly unorthodox) pop song, meteorological misconceptions about snow aside.
8. John Lennon & Yoko Ono – Happy Xmas (War Is Over)
Happy Xmas (War Is Over) is a song by John Lennon and Yoko Ono, released in 1971 on their album of the same name. It was later covered by hundreds of other artists, becoming one of the most covered Christmas songs in history.
9. Ike and Tina Turner – Merry Christmas Baby
Tina R&B-style screams and growls her way into Christmas, capping it all off with a rousing freestyle homage to ‘Jingle Bells.’
10. Kurtis Blow – Christmas Rappin’
Kurtis Blow is a legendary American rapper and hip-hop musician. With his pioneering work in the early days of hip-hop, “Christmas Rappin'” became one of the most popular songs of the era.
11. Chris Rea – Driving Home for Christmas
Chris Rea is an English singer-songwriter, best known for the songs Driving Home for Christmas and The Road to Hell. This song is about the protagonist’s return home after a trip to see his family for Christmas. The protagonist’s car breaks down in the middle of nowhere, so he has to hitchhike home.
12. Jackson 5 – Santa Claus is Coming to Town
The Jackson 5’s song “Santa Claus is Coming to Town” was one of the first Christmas songs ever recorded and released as a single. The Jackson 5 only had three other singles on the Billboard Hot 100 in the 1970s, but “Santa Claus is Coming to Town” made them one of the most popular groups in America.
13. Run-DMC – Christmas in Hollis
The group Run-DMC released their single “Christmas in Hollis” in 1987. The song was created by the group in collaboration with Rick Rubin and was released as a single by A&M in 1987. It peaked at number 78 on the Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs list in 2000, thirteen years after its first release.
14. Elvis Presley – Blue Christmas
Elvis Presley’s Christmas song, Blue Christmas, was released in October 1957. The song reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100 and has since become a holiday standard.
15. Paul McCartney – Wonderful Christmas Time
Paul McCartney is a British musician who has been the lead singer and songwriter of The Beatles, as well as a successful solo artist. His music is mostly composed by him, though he collaborated with John Lennon and George Harrison.
“Wonderful Christmas Time” is a song written by Paul McCartney and released as the second single from his album “McCartney II”. The single reached the top 10 on the UK Singles Chart and many other countries.
16. Destiny’s Child – 8 Days of Christmas
With a dash of snark and shameless consumerism, Beyoncé, Kelly, and Michelle transformed a familiar holiday tune into a pounding R&B Christmas carol for the modern era. A commendable accomplishment.
17. Chuck Berry – Run Rudolph Run
Run Rudolph Run is a Christmas song written by Chuck Berry in 1958. The lyrics are about an orphaned reindeer who escapes from the North Pole to play with children during Christmas time.
18. Louis Armstrong – Zat You, Santa Claus?
Despite the fact that it was recorded by one of the finest jazz musicians who ever lived, this Crimbo song maintains a shockingly low profile when the Christmas melodies are played. It also didn’t create a big impact for Louis, but you know what? It’s him having a good time, as seen by the song’s cheerful, cheeky lyrics and jumpy trumpet lines. And, ultimately, Christmas should be enjoyable. That is commendable of you, Louis; let us hope Santa does truly slip that wonderfully nice surprise under your door as asked.
19. Bobby Helms – Jingle Bell Rock
In the song, Bobby Helms sings about a jingle bellman who is selling his wares on a street corner. The song, which was written by Bobby Helms and has been covered by many artists, was written in 1957.
20. Kanye West – Christmas in Harlem
Christmas in Harlem is the song by American rapper and producer Kanye West. It was released on December 17th, 2010, by Roc-A-Fella Records.
21. Stevie Wonder – What Christmas Means to Me
If you’ve not paid any attention and find out, it turns out that Stevie’s definition of Christmas is singing songs, decorating the tree, and, of course, being with his kid. Give it a listen nevertheless, as it features an appealing Motown swing and a harmonica solo.
22. Ariana Grande – Santa Tell Me
This is a song by Ariana Grande from her EP – Christmas Kisses. It’s about how she feels as Christmas approaches, and the last lines of the song encourage people to do what they want.
And there you go!
Christmas is one of the most anticipated times of the year. It’s full of joy, family gatherings, and probably a little bit too much food (but don’t worry it makes for great clean-up). So why not make this Christmas season extra special with some amazing tunes? Whether you’re looking to carol or rock out, these are truly The Best Songs For Christmas!