Raised on the Radio

Because growing up on 70s television didn't kill me. It just made me who I am today.


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Cozy Up With Your Classic Christmas Standards Playlist!

christmas classic songs playlist

 

Every year you think you want it – something new. You are so sure that you start messing with your iPod, maybe playing with your Pandora or buying a few of those “Target special purchase” CD’s.

But then you realize; it just doesn’t matter. Some songs were done right that one time. You can listen to Martina McBride singing The Christmas Song, but you know it should have been Nat King Cole. Or how about Brad Paisley doing Winter Wonderland, no… not that, that should be Ella.

No matter what your confused, Christmas muddled brain is saying to you, some Christmas songs are meant to be heard this one way, they are classics for a reason. We get all warm and fuzzy remembering them from our childhood being sung just the way we want to hear them today.

 

A Holly Jolly Christmas – The Best Christmas Playlist Ever – The Versions You Remember

The first link takes you to YouTube or you can pop down to the bottom to click and hear the whole playlist. As always *the second link will take you to iTunes so you can own these songs yourself.

Silver Bells – Bing Crosby and Ella Fitzgerald 
*Silver Bells – Silver Bells: Christmas Classics

It’s The Most Wonderful Time of the Year – Andy Williams
*It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year – The Andy Williams Christmas Album

Here Comes Santa Claus – Gene Autry
*Here Comes Santa Claus – Gene Autry

Have a Holly Jolly Christmas – Burl Ives
*A Holly Jolly Christmas – Have a Holly Jolly Christmas

The Christmas Song – Nat King Cole
*The Christmas Song (Merry Christmas To You) – The Christmas Song

Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas – Ella Fitzgerald
*Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas – Ella Wishes You a Swinging Christmas

It’s Beginning to Look A Lot Like Christmas – Perry Como and The Fontaine Sisters
*It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas – Greatest Christmas Songs (Remastered)

I’ll Be Home For Christmas – Dean Martin
*I’ll Be Home for Christmas – The Dean Martin Christmas Album

The First Noel – Frank Sinatra
*The First Noël – A Jolly Christmas From Frank Sinatra

Carol of the Bells – The Robert Shaw Choir
*Carol of the Bells – A Festival of Carols

We Need A Little Christmas – Percy Faith
*We Need a Little Christmas – A Very Percy Faith Christmas: The Christmas Song, Little Drummer Boy, And More Holiday Favorites

The Christmas Waltz – Frank Sinatra
*The Christmas Waltz – Christmas With Sinatra and Friends

Caroling, Caroling – Nat King Cole
*Caroling, Caroling – The Christmas Song

Happy Holidays! – Andy Williams
*Happy Holiday / The Holiday Season – The Andy Williams Christmas Album

Home For the Holidays – The Carpenters
*(There’s No Place Like) Home for the Holidays – Christmas Portrait (The Special Edition)

Winter Wonderland – Ella Fitzgerald
*Winter Wonderland – Ella Wishes You a Swinging Christmas

 

Here are all of the songs on a YouTube playlist. And don’t forget to subscribe up there to get all of our latest posts! No spam EVER!

 


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The Magical Mystery of Music

If there was no such thing as the magical mystery that is music, I wonder what humans would do to pass the time? If I couldn’t hum to myself or learn to produce tonal incantations from odd and diverse objects, then how would I express myself beyond the fragmentary thoughts that bind my mind and yet escape before I ever once catch them?

I am a child of the 70s. Technically I was conceived in the spring of ’69, which I’m told was a pretty darn good year. My mother used to tell of having morning sickness while watching Neil Armstrong walk on the moon. Now that’s a prenatal story if I’ve ever heard one.

And as a child of the wild and woolly 70s, I was epically, perhaps even defiantly, Raised on the Radio. My father came from the time of the Stones and the Beatles, and my mother loved Elvis. There was rock, country, rockabilly, Motown, blues, and everything in-between.

Home on Deranged Top of the World

One of my most vivid memories from when I was probably 3 or 4 was standing on the stool at my parents’ bathroom sink, my dad’s trusty transistor radio blaring in the early morning hours as he dressed for work, my mom still snoozing in bed. Karen Carpenter’s heart-achingly beautiful voice was telling me she was “On top of the world /looking down on creation /and the only explanation I can find /is the love that I’ve found /ever since you’ve been around /Your love’s put me on the top of the world.”

Do you know I can still sing along perfectly to that song? That’s how much I loved it, and that’s how much it moved me, even if I didn’t understand it, and even if I had no idea what was waging in the newspapers that very day.

I can remember John Denver (one of the first concerts my parents took me to), and Peter, Paul & Mary, as they told me about “Puff, the Magic Dragon,” and I knew that the song had a sad ending, even if I couldn’t tell you why. But then they would play “If I Had a Hammer,” and I would revive my hope for the world.

There was Johnny Cash, telling me about some kind of “Ring of Fire,” but why in the world would he walk it? Then Conway Twitty would step in, usually with Loretta Lynn, and remind me that true love won’t let any obstacle stand in the way.

My parents introduced me to Ray Charles and Mac Davis, Charlie Pride and Herb AlpertHome on Deranged Herb Alpert

(the lady with the shaving cream on the album cover was delightfully naughty to a 5 year old), along with Bill Cosby and his humor albums and Ricky Nelson, who I loved to watch on “Ozzie & Harriett.” Garden Party, anyone?

As for myself, I found Shaun Cassidy and the glory of “Da Doo Ron Ron,” because I just knew he invented that song. The first 45 I ever bought with my own money was Kim Carnes’ “Bette Davis Eyes,” and nearly played it til the grooves wore off the thing.

There was Kenny Rogers, and I can still sing along to “The Gambler,” “Lady,” and “Ruby,” as the soldier begged, “Oh girl, don’t take your love to town/for God’s sake, turn around.” The Vietnam War echoed all around the land, even in music, because I’ve heard Marvin Gaye and Buffalo Springfield telling us all to ask what’s that sound.

Some of my best radio memories are trips to my grandparents’ house, where I would lie in the back seat (it was the 70s, people) and listen to the “oldies” station for the two hour drive. As the Four Tops and the Temptations and The Supremes told me all about love, Jim Croce, Carole King and James Taylor smoothed out the rough edges to lull me into sleep.

I saw “The Graduate” when I was probably younger than appropriate, but Simon & Garfunkel colored my world for years. Then the raw storytelling of Harry Chapin, Don McLean and Marty Robbins…stories that you don’t really hear anymore.

Sure, I’m an 80s baby, too. I love me some Duran Duran and U2, Bon Jovi and Motley Crue, REO Speedwagon and ABBA, but the Eagles will always be one of the most defining bands for me, because they are ingrained indelibly on my memory as powerfully as mind pictures of my mom and dad.

Home on Deranged music memories

I still listen to the radio. There’s a station here that plays a mix of 70s, 80s, 90s and now. I even listen to the top 40 and adult contemporary. But I hope I raise our girls on the radio, too, because you never forget the music that binds you across the years and generations and forever holds you, grounded, and yet, on top of the world.

About the author:

After a career as a newspaper reporter and editor, Melissa Swedoski thought she was well informed on the chaos of everyday life. Then she married a man 13 years her junior and became a SAHM to two toddler girls. Now, she’s mumbling through the mayhem of marriage and motherhood in a small Texas town, turning her investigative eye on the mishaps and misadventures of parenting and the marathon that is marriage, always with the emphasis on humor and love. You can find her living her big little life at Home on Deranged.