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Coping with Christmas Music Burnout: Free Holiday Music Downloads

photo by Tui Cameron
photo by Tui Cameron

Are you sick of Christmas music? If so, you are not alone. Any song gets annoying if you hear it too many times in a row. The first restaurant job I ever had was in a gyro joint where the guy would play “Funky Town,” over and over. Oddly, I still like that song, but it makes me crave falafel every time I hear it. Guess that isn’t the best example, but you get my drift, right? I bet you even quit humming “Feliz Navidad” for a moment, too. Oh, sorry – didn’t mean to get that stuck back in your head.

A simple way to cope with Christmas music burnout is to add new tunes to your holiday collection. You can even do this for free. Thanks to Cora, who blogs over at Better than Fine , I learned that has an offer called 25 Days of Free . It’s like a musical advent calendar, except you get a new holiday tune each day instead of candy.

I’ve collected a wide variety of Christmas music over the years, everything from traditional arrangements to campy stuff. My two favorites, though, have to be “A Charlie Brown Christmas,” by Vince Guaraldi, and the Narada Nutcracker.

If you are a fan of the Nutcracker Suite, you must get this version. What makes it so wonderful is that it was recorded on a 64 track, so they could mic each part separately. The clarity is tremendous. You can hear parts on the Narada Nutcracker that you could only ever hear live before.

Last year, I discovered Woody Phillips, a classically trained cellist, who records his own arrangements of well-known favorites, using hammers, drills and other tools as instruments. You can hear samples of his CD called A Toolbox Christmas on Amazon. Woody’s recording cracks me up, but it’s not like a joke where you get sick of the punchline right away. His CD’s are funny, but they are also musically interesting, and nice to simply listen to.

There’s really no need to get sick of holiday music – at home, anyway. If you work in a place where they play canned music all day, I don’t know what to tell you. Our culture frowns on ritual suicide, so your best bet is to ask your doctor for antidepressants. Of course, there are always ear plugs.

What about you? How do you cope with holiday music overload? Do you have any favorites that cheer you up this time of year?

Tui Snider
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