It's a Popcrazy Christmas!
It's that time of year again -- time for Popcrazy's list of Christmas albums worth a listen. Instead of digging your scratchy old records out of the attic, why not update your December soundtrack with a few of our suggestions?

American Idol - The Great Holiday Classics
buy it now from If the tunes of Clay Aiken, Ruben Studdard and Kelly Clarkson fill your heart with joy, you've probably already added this collection of "holiday classics" to your cd collection. While Justin Guarini recently lost his recording contract, you can still hear him on this album, singing "I'll Be Home for Christmas." (Of course he will! Now that his label doesn't want him, we're guessing he doesn't have anyplace else to go.)
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Various Artists - The Big 80's Christmas
buy it now from If you grew up during the '80s, these songs will take you back to the good old days when David Bowie sang "Little Drummer Boy" and The Ramones proved even punks catch the holiday spirit with "Merry Christmas (I Don't Wanna Fight Tonight)." See if you still know all the words to The Waitresses' "Christmas Wrapping," and flash back to a simpler time when all you wanted for Christmas was a Snoopy Snow-Cone Machine and some sparkly leg warmers.
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Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen - Cool Yule
buy it now from This CD is worth buying just to see the looks on your coworkers' faces when you crank up "Swingle Bells" at the holiday office party. Featuring Mary-Kate, Ashley and several of their more vocally-talented friends, the album includes a wide selection of old favorites as well as the strangely catchy original "I Do Believe It's Christmas Eve."
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Various Artists - Radio Disney Holiday Jams 2
buy it now from Radio Disney's second Christmas compilation mixes classics by Johnny Mathis and Burl Ives with modern holiday hits. Highlights include "I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday" by the A*Teens and "I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus" by the Jackson 5. If this album fills your heart with Christmas, check out Holiday Jams 1 for more of the same.
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Destiny's Child - 8 Days of Christmas
buy it now from "Silver Bells" aren't good enough for you? This Destiny's Child album has the answer -- "Platinum Bells." The independent women's Christmas album offers similarly-updated versions of other holiday hits. Twelve days of Christmas always did seem like a bit much...
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Various Artists - Now That's What I Call Christmas!
buy it now from This two disk compilation has enough classics and new hits to keep you, your mom, your baby sister and your Aunt Gertrude filled with holiday spirit and rockin' beats. Bing and Britney, Elvis and Joe, Ella and Elmo... You'll feel nostalgic yet up to date with this surefire winner. (It even includes "Do They Know It's Christmas?" by Band Aid!)
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Christina Aguilera - My Kind of Christmas
buy it now from She already had an English album and a Spanish album, so a Christmas album was inevitable. It's got "Angels We Have Heard on High" and "Oh Holy Night," and the original tracks "Christmas Time," "This Year," and the provocatively titled "Xtina's Xmas." Surprisingly, considering her crossover attempts, she didn't include any Spanglish tracks like "Feliz Navidad." You've gotta love "The Christmas Song (Chestnuts Roasting on An Open Fire) (Thunderpuss 2000 Version)," a trance/techno version of the Christmas favorite.
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Various Artists - Platinum Christmas
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So you don't want to commit to one pop star's Christmas album? You just can't bear the thought of listening to 98 Degrees do versions of every freaking Christmas song ever? This compilation is for you. Since the long list of pop acts includes Christina and Britney, and Backstreet and 'N Sync, this CD can make everybody happy. There will be no more fighting, only peace on earth and good pop music for all.
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'N Sync - Home For Christmas
buy it now from A few years ago when this five-some of teen dreams were just a tad skinnier and free of hair dye and rhinestones, they released this Christmas album. Don't expect it to sound as rockin' and flashy as their latest CD, but do expect tender renditions of "The First Noel" and "The Christmas Song." Original tracks include "Under My Tree," "Kiss Me At Midnight," and "I Never Knew The Meaning of Christmas."
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Mariah Carey - Merry Christmas
buy it now from Back when she wore more clothes, Mariah Carey released this album of Christmas tracks that my sister continues to play endlessly. With a nice set of holiday standards like "Silent Night" and 'Santa Claus is Coming to Town," this is a safe choice for the holidays. If you want something more recent, you can always go for the unofficial Mariah-clone -- Christina Aguilera, above.
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98 Degrees - This Christmas
buy it now from Come on girls. We know why you really like this hot boy why would you want to buy a Christmas album that only has pictures of them all covered up in sweaters and jackets? As with most of the other pop CD's this has the two traditional covers "The Christmas Song" and "Oh Holy Night." (We know everyone picks the latter track just so they get a chance to belt out that part about "Can't you hear... the angels' voices, OH!!!")
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Jewel - A Holiday Collection
buy it now from Jewel's holiday album features "Ave Maria," "O Little Town Of Bethlehem," "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" as well as a special Christmas version of her song "Hands." Who will save your soul this Christmas? Only Jewel really knows...
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Various Artists - A Christmas Gift For You From Phil Spector
buy it now from Back in the '60s, long before TLC, Destiny's Child or the Spice Girls, producer Phil Spector put the girl groups together. This collection is one you and your parents can agree on. Tracks include "Santa Claus is Coming to Town" by the Crystals as well as "Winter Wonderland" by Darlene Love. Darlene also does an original track called "Marshmallow World." (How could you not love a song called that?) So grab your Aquanet and call your mother to see if she has a copy. If not, click on the picture to buy it right now.
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New Kids On the Block - Merry, Merry Christmas

NKOTB Not currently available in stores, this one is a hot property on eBay and Amazon's "used" store. More than likely though, if you look through your old tapes you may be fortunate enough to find it. The Kids released this album in 1989, back when they were still a huge success. It features a selection of holiday standards and the unforgettable single "This One's For the Children." This album is an essential for anyone who hopes to have a "Funky Funky Christmas."
--Fred Flores and Lisa Beebe
12/14/03 Top of page