Full disclosure: I got several of these country and/or western Christmas tunes from my fellow blogger at A Truer Sound who posted a kick-ass country Christmas mix last year, and recently re-posted it.
1. Adam's House Cat - Santa's Out of Rehab by Christmas.mp3
No clue where this came from. Adam's House Cat is the precursor to one of my favorite bands, the Drive-By Truckers. This track was probably recorded sometime between 1988 and 1990. Its fun listening to a young Patterson Hood scratch this one out.
2. Ryan Adams - Hey Parker, It's Christmas.mp3
From: KROQ Kevin & Bean: The Year They Recalled Santa Claus (2003, out of print)
KROQ is a radio station out of Los Angeles. Ryan Adams is such a talented artist when he isn't busy being a pain in the ass.
3. Kelly Willis & Bruce Robison - Oklahoma Christmas.mp3
Buy: Happy Holidays (2006)
4. Jason Collett - A Beguiled Christmas in Sales.mp3
Buy: Peace on Earth Vol. 2 (2008)
All proceeds from the sale of this CD go to The Children of Uganda Fund. Only $7.50 for a digital download!!!
5. Herb Alpert & the Tijuana Brass - My Favorite Things.mp3
Buy: Christmas Album (1968, reissued 2005)
6. John Prine - Christmas in Prison.mp3
Buy: Great Days: The John Prine Anthology (1993)
7. Reverend Horton Heat - Santa Looked a lot Like Daddy.mp3
Buy: We Three Kings (2005)
8. Neko Case - Christmas Card from a Hooker in Minneapolis.mp3
From: New Coat of Paint: Song of Tom Waits (2000, Out of Print)
Neko Case covers Tom Waits. An even more interesting song when sung by a woman.
9. Robert Earl Keen, Jr. - Merry Christmas from the Family.mp3
Buy: Gringo Honeymoon (1994)
10. Paul Kelly - How to Make Gravy.mp3
Buy: Songs from the South: The Best of Paul Kelly (1997)
I just discovered the Australian singer/songwriter Paul Kelly this year. This is another song about spending Christmas in jail full of regret, only it describes Christmas down-under, where it is summer and hot outside.
11. Ry Cooder - Christmas in Southgate.mp3
Buy: My Name Is Buddy (2007)
12. Old 97's - Holly Jolly Christmas.mp3
From: Honky-Tonk Holidays: Christmas in Deep Nöellum (1994, out of print)
This track freaks me out a little bit because its the Old 97's doing jazz.
13. Alabama - Tennessee Christmas.mp3
From: The Time-Life Treasury of Christmas
There are dozens of Time-Life Treasuries out there. I have no idea where I got this one. It is also on Alabama Christmas (1985, out of print).
14. Steve Earle - Christmas in Washington.mp3
Buy: El Corazón (1997)
15. Eef Barzelay - Joy to the World.mp3
Buy: Bitter Honey (2006) (CD out of print, digital only)
Eef Barzelay is the man behind the alt country band Clem Snide.
16. Kelly Willis & Bruce Robison - Please, Daddy Don't Get Drunk.mp3
Buy: Happy Holidays (2006)
17. John Denver - Noel: Christmas Eve, 1913.mp3
From: John Denver & The Muppets: A Christmas Together (1979, out of print)
My little brother and I used to listen to this on cassette and watch the TV special every year. I found the CD a few years ago and even as an adult I still know every word to every song.
18. Los Straightjackets - God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen.mp3
Buy: 'Tis the Season for Los Straitjackets (2001)
Listen for a lick from Del Shannon's "Runaway" during this instrumental.
19. My Morning Jacket - O Holy Night.mp3
From: WFPK-FM X-Mas (2001, out of print)
WFPK is a public radio station in Louisville, Kentucky. I always thought that Jim James had an amazing voice, but this is ridiculous.
20. The Pogues - Fairytale Of New York (with Kirsty MacColl).mp3
Buy: If I Should Fall from Grace with God (1997, reissue 2006)
According to our friends over at Wikipedia, this track is frequently voted the Number One Best Christmas song of all time in various television, radio and magazine related polls in the UK.
21. Howard Iceberg & the Titanics - Christmas In Missouri.mp3
From: Final Fade (2003, out of print)
I don't know much about this band, but this song reminds me of when I lived in St. Louis.
22. Rocket Park - Rudolph the Redneck Reindeer.mp3
From: Better Than Fruitcake (2000, out of print)
"Freebird" meets "The Red Nosed Reindeer"
"Nourishing Holiday Classics by St. Louis' Finest Rockers." I bought this CD when I lived in St. Louis. 100% of the profits from the CD went to Operation Food Search, the St. Louis food bank. I have no clue what, if anything, ever happened to this band, but this song always cracked me up.
Please consider donating time or money to a food bank, animal shelter, or some other charitable organization this year. The economy sucks bad, and many people out there need lots of help.