Deck the halls with 9 podcasts and episodes all about holiday music

round up December 22, 2022

Some tinsel time tunes from us and for you on this festive podcast round-up! ‘Tis the season for holiday cheer, so we’ve found episodes breaking down classics, sharing playlists of lesser-known holiday songs, and holiday music facts.

No holiday music round-up would be complete without mentioning Mariah Carey, and there’s an episode about “All I Want for Christmas is You.” There are episodes sharing new holiday tunes from Alicia Keys, Michael Bublé, Lizzo, and Sam Smith.

If you’re a holiday music fan, or feel like learning more about tunes, check out our list:

Tinsel Tunes Podcast – A Christmas Music Podcast

Listen to ‘Tinsel Tunes Podcast – A Christmas Music Podcast’

“Tinsel Tunes Podcast – A Christmas Music Podcast” has over 50 episodes filled with holiday cheer! Hosts will explore holiday song trivia, unpack classics and modern Christmas hits, and share round-ups of favorite holiday songs by genre. Tune in for country Christmas songs, the history behind one of the oldest holiday songs, “The Friendly Beasts,” and reimagining songs from Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas soundtrack. Episodes are under 45 minutes long.

Pop Shop Podcast

Listen to ‘Pop Shop Podcast’

Billboard’s “Pop Shop Podcast” has plenty of recent episodes about holiday tunes. Hear from guests like Alicia Keys chatting about her first holiday album and Michael Bublé dishing on his Christmas record. There’s an episode sharing new holiday hits this year from Lizzo, Sam Smith, and Sia.

Switched on Pop podcast art

Switched on Pop

Listen to ‘Why do new Christmas songs fail?’ on ‘Switched on Pop’

This “Switched on Pop” episode unpacks the 21st century Christmas canon and discusses why older Christmas songs continue to overshadow newer releases. Hear about newer holiday songs from Kelly Clarkson, Ariana Grande, Justin Bieber, and the Jonas Brothers.

Forgotten History of Our Favorite Christmas Carols

Forgotten History of Our Favorite Christmas Carols

Listen to ‘Forgotten History of Our Favorite Christmas Carols’

Hear the stories behind holiday classics like “Deck the Halls,” “Silver Bells,” and “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer” on 95.7 BIG FM (WRIT-FM)’s “Forgotten History of Our Favorite Christmas Carols.”

Switched on Pop

Listen to ‘Wham! Op. 84, “Last Christmas” with Chilly Gonzales’ on ‘Switched on Pop’

In 1984, Wham! released “Last Christmas,” and this episode of Vulture’s “Switched on Pop” analyzes why people are still listening to George Michael’s auteur track. He seemingly took a cue from Prince and played everything himself — synths, drum machines, etc! Guest Chilly Gonzales appears on this episode. He is a Grammy-winning pianist who recorded the holiday album,  A Very Chilly Christmas. When selecting songs to cover, Chilly mostly opted for ones written before the 1960s, but could not resist “Last Christmas” and “All I Want for Christmas Is You.” Chilly broke down the sections of “Last Christmas,” got into some theory, and explained how it’s structured like an opera by breaking down bits on the piano. And you’ll learn a bunch of opera terminology.

All Songs Considered podcast art

All Songs Considered

Listen to ‘Holiday Mix: A Latin Music Christmas’ on ‘All Songs Considered’

This year, “Alt.Latino” remembered one of their classic holiday episodes from 2014 with the D.C. Latino choir, Cantigas.

Slate Culture

Listen to ‘Hit Parade: Make My Wish Come True Edition’ on ‘Slate Culture’

Christmas queen Mariah Carey released “All I Want for Christmas Is You” in 1994. Although it did not chart on the year of its release, it eventually became the first Christmas song to hit Billboard’s Hot 100 since “The Chipmunk Song” in 1958. This episode of Slate’s podcast unpacks this classic and tries to reason why holiday hits from the ’60s, ’70s, and ’80s did not reach the Hot 100 list. Carey’s super-smash began charting in the 2010s, and host Chris Molanphy analyzes why it becomes more popular each year.

Sound Opinions

Listen to ‘Sound Opinions’

“Sound Opinions” hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot are joined by “crate-digging Kris Kringle,” Andy Cirzan to share his obscure holiday playlist. Check out 51 minutes of songs you might not have heard yet.

Hit Parade

Listen to ‘The Christmas is All Around Edition’ on ‘Hit Parade’

On “The Christmas is All Around Edition,” host Chris Molanphy explores holiday charters in the UK and explained how Brits make a sport of what songs are going to chart by placing wagers. It even becomes a topic of British talk shows where song contenders are analyzed like fantasy football players. Chris looks into patterns of songs that do well during the holiday season besides Christmas standards, like Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody.”

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