My “Chanukah Uncommon” playlist

First off, no one in America can help but notice that Christmas corners the mass-popularity market in holiday songs.  That is no surprise, and I enjoy a good number of them.  Chanukah songs are a much smaller market, and some of them are just as treacly as any other holiday song that you’d rather not hear over and over.  However, a little research on my part allows me to offer a Chanukah playlist that you might enjoy.  If you want to find my choices all in one place, I’ve made it into a Spotify playlist.

Feast of Lights –They Might Be Giants.  Just as quirky and original a song as you would expect from TMBG.

Miracle – Matisyahu.  Yes, the Orthodox Jewish reggae artist leaves his mark on the festival of lights.

Chanukah Song – Adam Sandler.  Thank you, Adam Sandler, for bringing us one of our few mass-market popular songs for Chanukah.  It’s not quite as funny without the element of surprise, but still worth it.

Hanukkah, Oh Hanukkah – Barenaked Ladies. A surprisingly straightforward rendition, but these guys are talented enough to keep the cheese factor to a minimum.

How Do You Spell Channukkahh? – The LeeVees. A pop enlightenment that explains the spelling of, for example, the two titles above.  Set to a good groove, you’ll be nodding your head all the way through (both in rhythm and in agreement).

Happy Joyous Hanukkah – Indigo Girls.  It’s an unexpectedly old-fashioned folksy offering from the queens of neo-folk.

Oh Hanukkah – Meshugga Beach Party. I can’t tell you how much I love this.  Most of this album is a hoot, but I now can’t get through the season without at least one listen to the surf-music rendition of this particular song.

Spin Dreidel Spin – The Klezmatics.  Klezmer is no new invention, but there’s nothing dusty about The Klezmatics.

The Great Menorah Debate – Neal Katz.  A lesson in a song, but deftly delivered.  If you didn’t know about this part of the Chanukah tradition (or even if you do), you may find it interesting.

(I’m Spending) Hanukkah in Santa Monica – Tom Lehrer.  I spent many enjoyable hours listening to comedy albums with my family, and Tom Lehrer was often in rotation.  A combination of nostalgia and true enjoyment of his goofy rhymes put this number on my playlist.

Hanukkah Dance – Woodie Guthrie.  It’s a fun, earnest, pretty goyishe rendition of a Chanukah song, but I love Woodie Guthrie and find this number appealing.  I hope you agree.

The Hanukkah Waltz – Bela Fleck and the Flecktones.  Bela Fleck and the Flecktones unleash their inner klesmerim with great skill and groove.

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One response

  1. Pingback: Five New Pop Holiday Songs That Don’t $*(%! | downpourblue

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