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Les Patineurs, or The Skaters’ Waltz, is a standard for winter backdrop music. Still few lyrics have been pinned to this French ditty. Here is one of the best, The Golden Orchestra and Singers performing “The First Skater’s Waltz.” Kidstuff, but terribly amusing–with real ’60s orchestration.

Skating goes with dating, for some. Gloria Estefan is “Thankful” for you at that time of year: Skating with my crew in the park (cause school is out, yay!). Gospel-ish pop sung by thinkers Gloria Estefan, Emily Estefan, Sasha Estefan-Coppola.

Burnt trees, unread letters to Santa, a shaken snowglobe with skaters suffering vertigo… Bnny Rbbt declares “There’s No Christmas in Hell“–hell being your absence from his love. But this filtered alt is a gorgeous cry for help. Play it again!

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American rocking it hard, Noxtrain remembers the old days (with you), which somehow involved ice and tobogganing. “Twenty-Six Seventy” is a journey of maudlin proportions. Good stuff.

Carl Dixon a cappellas to ‘Chopsticks’ about how “Snowflakes are Dancing.” Then it gets jazzy! There are horses, buttoning up coats, snuggling… and then: Some like toboggan or seed cataloguing–not a rhyme i expected!

Hawksley Workman hits the novelty marching rhythm acutely for the alt-pop “First Snow of the Year.” First panic, then consideration, then all-day tobogganing! Magical (and not just ‘cuzza the whistling solo).

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Techical Ecstacy shrieks garage about their “Sled” until the bombs start falling. Really.

Sophie Villanelle balances the musical scales with banjo New Age in “The Sled Dog Lament.” It’s a dog’s life.

He sled, she sled from Josh Walther (feat. Robyn Lista) in the easy listening country “Making Christmas Ours.” Basic but danceable.

Percussive alt-pop from X-mas Donkey & The Glittering Balls makes “I Wanna Ride My Sled” a jingling masterpiece.  Sax solo!

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Lunatic Soul plays with our expectations in “Gravestone Hill,” an alt-folk place for remembering, finding love,–and SLEDDING!

When there’s “No Snow” there’s no sledding. Moira and Claire dum da dum dum through the folksy pop of missing it. But, then– [adorbs]

What Does Christmas Mean to You” invites a lite-rock laundry list of snowing, caroling, gingerbread… and sleds by Jesse Reid. Yeah, my kid could’ve penned this.

Oh Geronimo stretches the metaphor in “The Sled” to include trust, love, relationship, and, oh, i dunno, descent. Alt prettiness.

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Sled Kennedys storm the garage with their “Sledding,” a raucous assault on the hills. Better watch out.

More historical than holiday-ical, “It’s All Who You Know” from Newsboys traces cause and effect. The sled does get snowbound, but it might be Scott and it might be Amundsen. Either way, rocking alt.

Luke Stanage uses new age alt to sculpt a musical landscape in “New Sled (Christmastime is Here).” Tinkling and plonking arrange the snow scape of mind, although whooshing over the scenery seems wanting.

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1 Trait Danger raps “Sleds for Christmas” as a diss to the other kids. BLUE ALERT!! This elf-built, silver behemoth works better when the operator is under the influence.

Stephen Sharer’s pop number “Snow Day” repeats for us due to the awesome sledding. Catchy.

The Mountain Says No wanted nothing more than a “Christmas Sled.” This alt-pop sparkler puts us in the driver’s seat, all right.

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Not every sled for every kid was an overturned garbage can lid… the big want (since around 1900) was the Flexible Flyer, that plank-y top with the wrought iron runners that could slice an obstacle up. Watch out!

Cori Connors goes deep with childhood nostalgia and folk/pop in her “Flexible Flyer.” This sad’un is full of regret, like adult memories are wont to do. Sigh.

Pete Sinjin also hollows out the earth for the dead memories of forgotten winters in his alt-bluegrass “Flexible Flyer.” Existential sing-along!

Brian DeWan’s “Flexible Flyer,” however, is the alt-slick trip down the snowy slope. Childish threats of violence! Wot fun!

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Almost time for the good stuff.

Chilling on the lanai, Styles Dangerfeld is not big on lyrics. “Merry Christmas, I’m Going Surfing” is the title AND the libretto. Still, pretty cool for light rock.

Gray sings us a lovely love song with alt-garage emotionality, but “Fall v2” mentions Christmas lights wrapped around something, and some silliness with a rented surfboard in Galveston. So let’s sneak a peek at it.

Christmas Countdown: 1 at last

One is not just the loneliest number; it’s a pronoun, an article, a weirdly spelled adjective meaning alone. But we’re so tired of the countdown, we will not include EVERY CHRISTMAS SONG EVER that mentions everyone/anyone/no one/a/the/that/this/I/you/etc… No! Let’s dig up some GOOD stuff.

Where else to start but with Dead Sex Puppets and “Santa’s Buried in My Back Yard.” It’s punk! It’s pop! It’s got an alibi!

Which cues up Pup Punk’s deadpan hilarious “Just One Christmas.” See, Mom and Dad WON’T get a divorce like all the other parents, whose kids get two Christmases. It’s so upsetting that BLUE ALERT!

Time for one more pop punk tune about existential dread? Problem Patterns has fun with “Christmas Number One.” No numbers were harmed in the singing of their woes.

Princess Superstar raps a weird mash-up about blond ambition with “I Hope I Sell a Lot of Records at Christmas Time.” There’s one Xmas star.

Sevenbow adds a welcome touch of meta-wink to their metal “One Minute Christmas Song.” Otherwise, it’d be only music.

Which reminds me to re-listen to Bah & The Humbugs’s “One Minute Manger,” ’cause that’s funny, too.

Chatty comedy from Axis of Awesome takes task with ’12 Days’ in their “One Day of Christmas.” No celebrates more than one day of Christmas!

Lauren Mayer (and son) attack Christmas with “Eight is Better Than One.” Hanukkah is more fun! Electronic version of their pop.

Hoping to prolong the one day The Benefit & the Chinese Firekits sing (badly) “(Give Me One More) Christmas Cheer.” Hurray! Stumbling pop.

Mono Puff’s one Christmas wish results in harm in the pleasingly alt-pop “Careless Santa.” Crime doesn’t pay; but Christmas wishes should!

Christmas Countdown: 4 yo

The narrator in “Father Christmas” remembered believing in Santa when he was four. But in the modern days (of the ’70s) that icon gets no respect. The Kinks rock the not-quite-punk.

Skip Ewing tugs the heartstrings and country music guitar strings with the shameless orphan story of “Christmas Carol,” a three or four year old who breaks the heart of a mall Santa with adoptive consequences.

Dave Henninger gets more modern with a folk-infused country in “Merry Christmas to You.” The dear little one addressed is remembered as new born, When you were a little older–I would say around 3 or 4, and even today. Parental wonderment.

Driving through the Midwest, Nanci Griffith prefers “Shaking out the Snow.” Yet, she recalls in pop cum country, the mean prank one Christmas morn’ when I was four. My brother told me it was warm. This resulted in a deep seated pneumo-trauma. Shake it, girl.

Despite having heard some footsteps in the hall outside my door (The same ol’ Christmas trick my dad had played since I was four), the hero of Harry Connick Jr.’s “(It Must’ve Been Ol’) Santa Claus” does look outside… Big band magical shenanigans follow.

Loud Letters travels from the mysticism of being four to today when he’s on auto pilot. Alt-pop details something that’s “Like Christmas” but can never be again. Not like when a child. Bummer.