HEAD TO HEAD: Traditional or Contemporary Christmas Music
Traditional Music: Erin O’Donnell
Imagine: it is winter break, and you have no assignments hanging over your head. You snuggle up in a cozy blanket by the fire, with a mug of hot cocoa, as Nat King Cole serenades you with his euphonic, honey-coated mahogany voice. Truly entrancing: a deliverance from today’s petty stress into the Yuletide joy of yesteryear.
The picture of serenity, right?
Now imagine that last scenario with Justin Bieber or Carly Rae Jepsen nasally whining to you. Now, the picture is not so serene, is it?
Christmas, for those who celebrate it, is the most magical time of the year; a time to forget the stress of school, work and relationships, and, instead, focus on simpler things, like chestnuts roasting or the hope of snowfall.
Modern Christmas music, however, is typically focused on a romantic interest or lamenting about the absence of said romantic interest.
Such music curtails this trance and delivers listeners right back into the exact state of mind from which Christmas break is supposed to be an escape.
The appeal of traditional Christmas music is threefold: it is timeless, universal and it is a break from the norm.
There is something so endearing about the fact that our parents also giggled as children over “I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus” or sang “Baby It’s Cold Outside” with friends at Christmas parties in high school.
This Christmas season, I beg of you, do not give into today’s bubble-gum pop temptations. Allow yourself the break from today you deserve, and slip into the past, led by reliable, ever-constant Mr. King Cole.
Contemporary Music: Nick Cosmo
Christmas music has been a genre dominated by outdated songs for quite some time, but it is time for new holiday music to come over the hills of snow and establish itself as the superior category.
From the high notes of Mariah Carey’s “All I Want For Christmas Is You,” to the dulcet style of Michael Bublé in his album titled Christmas, Christmas music of late offers the range necessary to allow everyone to rock the night away.
Christmas is meant to provide a feeling of excitement and celebration; a mood that is provided much more readily by the upbeat Christmas songs made in recent times than traditional songs.
While old songs try to get their listeners to rock around the Christmas tree, it is more likely to hasten the approach of a silent night, as the slower pace might send those nearby to sleep. However, I would be much more excited to say Feliz Navidad after hearing the cheery, fast-paced sounds of a newer Christmas song.
Furthermore, recent Christmas music has performed exceptionally well on the market. According to a Forbes article titled “The Top Ten Best-Selling Albums of 2014 Were…” written by Hugh McIntyre on January 8th of last year, a Christmas album released by Pentatonix, a previously largely unknown a capella group, managed to sell the fourth most copies of any album released that year, which is especially impressive when considering the release date of the album was fairly late in the year.
The fact of the matter is simple: more recent Christmas music delivers the special Christmas feeling in a better way than older holiday music.