10. “Merry Christmas (I don’t want to fight tonight)” – The Ramones
This is the perfect combination of punk and the reconciliation that is brought on by the holidays. The Ramones classic invokes the love of the holiday, imploring it’s listeners to embrace the love and give up petty arguments.
9. “Santa Claus is Coming to Town”- Bruce Springsteen
Bruce’s warm voice conveys the jolly spirit of the holidays, like a friendly uncle describing Santa’s journey to you. His description of Santa’s sleigh flying over New Jersey adds a gentle realism to the song.
8. “Jingle Bell Rock” -Billy Idol
Perhaps this isn’t a real rock song, but when legendary rocker Billy Idol opts for a toned-down appearance, and a slightly creepy viedo, you gotta give it a listen or two.
7. “Father Christmas” -The Kinks
The jingle bells tinkle in the opening of this song, and then the guitar strums in. The narrator describes happy memories of Santa as a kid, and then being assaulted by dissillusioned poor kids while dressed as Father Christmas.
6. “Run Rudolph Run” – Chuck Berry
Guitar legend Chuck belts it out in describing the hardest-rockin’ reindeer of the nine. Rudolph knows that Santa can’t do it without him; he knows he’s the man tonight.
5. “Santa’s Beard”- The Beach Boys
In their laid-back storytelling style, The Beach Boys narrate the story of a young child accidently removing a mall santa’s beard and becoming disillusioned with reality.
4. “Christmas Wrapping”-The Waitresses
Yeah, it’s a chick song in the 1980s new-wave style, but it’s the most perfect depiction of a modern single woman’s feelings toward Christmas. The narrarator is constantly stressed about a guy she met a year ago, and how love never blossomed. As she resigns herself to Christmas by herself this year, she meets her paramour one more time. Christmas miracle!
3. “The Night Santa Went Crazy” – ‘Weird’ Al Yankovic
It was either this one or “Christmas at Ground Zero” that had to make this list, but this one contrasts nicely the bucholic north pole with outright rage, blood and gore in the most delightful way.
2. “Little St. Nick” The Beach Boys
When a group sings about cars, how do they reinvent themselves for the holidays? Santa’s gotta have a sweet ride if he’s visiting houses all over the world in a single night? The Beach Boys make you envy Kris Kringle’s sleigh.
1. “Oh Come All Ye Faithful” Twisted Sister
Anyone who learned this song in Catholic school will have a field day thinking about Dee Snyder bursting into your mediocre Christmas gift exchange, and belting out one of the most pious and respectful song about the nativity, mixed in with the instrumental chorus of “We’re Not Gonna Take It”.