Let’s be honest, Christmas music is magical. It’s the only kind of music that gets to use bells, brushes and children’s choirs in an unlimited amount unashamedly. However, Have A Holly Jolly Christmas and Baby Its Cold Outside are fun for Christmas parties and driving round the neighborhood light show, but what do we sing in church? So, since we’re worship leaders and we start listening to Christmas music in September, here is a list of songs with fresh arrangements and fresh ways to say our favorite message- Jesus has come to save us all. What a great reason we have to sing.
- The First Noel – Lauren Daigle, Christmas: Joy To The World
The half-time back beat lean this arrangement toward a more current sound and the added “ohs” and vocals are beautiful. Though still low-tempo, it maintains great energy. http://youtu.be/-q4ddvOD35s
- Hark The Herald Angels Sing – Matt Maher, Do You Hear What I Hear? Songs Of Christmas.
This is a great mid-tempo opener or middle set song. It has a folk-traditional feel, but a surprise original chorus and great melody variations. http://youtu.be/UsqJS91Bd4I
- We Have A Savior – Hillsong Worship, We Have A Savior
Hillsong has a community of such gifted songwriters and thy've be this newer Christmas song feels like you’ve been singing it in church for years. Simple language, gospel centered and easy to sing, We Have A Savior is the perfect blend of the contemporary worship style and Christmas. http://youtu.be/0esKTjhqJII
- Born Is The King – Hillsong Worship, We Have A Savior
Another by the Hillsong tribe (this whole album is just on point), Born Is The King is upbeat, catchy and just so fun to sing. And the music video is super cute. http://youtu.be/Qf6OoAZbAQg
- Angels We Have Heard On High – Sanctus Real
With four on the floor, synths and strong ascending melody variations in the chorus, this up-tempo version of this classic carol is so much fun.
- O Come, O Come Emmanuel – Seabird, Over The Hills And Everywhere
For those of you who love this song but are looking for something a little less dark, Seabird’s rendition of this traditionally hauntingly beautiful carol might be just the right fit.
- O Come, O Come Emmanuel – The Civil Wars
And for the rest of you who want this carol in all its classic hair-raising glory, the Civil Wars harmonies are sure to send chills. http://youtu.be/xiGyRAhpgQo
- Go Tell It On The Mountain – Needtobreathe
If you’re looking for a mix of soul and countryside, Needtobreathe’s rustic slightly imperfect harmonies and laid back feel will take you where you want to go. http://youtu.be/H_TnSwrNeWY
- Silent Night (Lord Of My Life) – Lady Antebellum, On This Winter’s Night
This song is so beautiful and Lady Antebellum created a sweet duet round with an added chorus and a key change. http://youtu.be/r2-K-A4rNuo
- O Come All Ye Faithful – Johnnyswim, A Johnnyswim Christmas
The husband and wife duo have melted our hearts once again with their heavy acoustic driven arraignments and soulful vocal performances on their newest release: A Johnnyswim Christmas. http://youtu.be/uKeEk9jXvKw
- Joy To The World – Francesca Battistelli, Christmas
A couple chord subs and a train beat perk your ears and warm your heart as you listen to this arrangement. A great mid-set or ending song. http://youtu.be/17Ii8ShQW-k
- O Holy Night – Kari Jobe, Where I Find You: Christmas Edition
This is one of my favorite Christmas songs by far and Kari Jobe tells its story beautifully. This is a great arrangement for traditional churches that have strings players; the violin parts are gorgeous! http://youtu.be/0pLEn1Rmt00
I hope this list gives you ideas as you plan or maybe just a few new songs for you enjoy this time of year! Happy singing and Merry Christmas!