I did see someone else post their own list, but I had planned to do that sometime anyway, so nyah. Lo behold, an atheist's top ten beloved Christmas tunes!


1. Minuit, chrétiens (original French source of O Holy Night)

Roberto Alagna (he's French, despite the name)


2. Adeste Fideles (the proper Latin version, TYVM)

Luciano Pavarotti & choir


3. Hallelujah Chorus (I went to Handel's Messiah at my city's symphony last year and basically sobbed with pure emotion the whole performance. During the Hallelujah chorus everybody in the audience stands up. It's apparently just the thing everyone does without any cue.)

The London Symphony Orchestra


4. O Holy Night

The incomparable Leontyne Price


5. Carol of the Bells

Trans-Siberian Orchestra (though Manheim Steamroller's version was my first love)


6. Angels We Have Heard on High

Andrea Bocelli


7. Candlelight Carol - a harmonious piece of pastoral religious melody with some satisfyingly soaring bits

Bryn Terfel (glorious Welsh bass-baritone)

Can't find it on YouTube. Sadface.


8. Mendelssohn's Hark the Herald Angels Sing! (only when it's orchestral, with a solo trumpet piercing and rising above the rest!)

Can't find my favorite version by the Empire Brass ensemble, but:


9. For Unto Us a Child is Born(from Messiah)

London Symphony Orchestra


10. Stille Nacht

Die Wiener Sängerknaben (Vienna Boys' Choir)


Whew. That's a lot of Glorias and In excelsis Deo-ing, isn't it.

Christmas music! Not just for Christians!

One thing you can say about Catholicism is that it is very pretty. That - and being closeted - is why I'll be at mass Christmas Eve.

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