New Orleans Sings Along at Christmas Time

[Updated] According to singer Judith Owen, Christmas has two sides—“Bloody awful and wonderful,” and both are represented in Christmas songs. When sung together, they’re shared expressions of community, but “they're all about yearning,” she said in 2012. “They're about missing home. They're about missing people. Songs like 'White Christmas' and 'The Christmas Song' are about yearning. 'Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas' is one of the saddest songs I've heard in my entire life."

Debbie Davis and Matt Perrine Deal with Christmas

Christmas records can often show all the imagination of gift cards in stockings, but on Oh Crap, It’s Christmas! Debbie Davis and Matt Perrine includes holiday favorites as well as those banging on the canon’s door demanding entry. “Hanukah in Santa Monica,” Davis says, “is like Mel Brooks on The Muppet Show. It’s about being smart and funny and fast.” They play an ironic “Carol of the Bells” with Perrine’s sousaphone taking the lead, and the novelty “Mele Kalikimaka,” the Hawaiian Christmas song.