Here we present you with the first (of many) Spotify playlists to get you feeling all warm and cosy over the Christmas period.
Our resident cheroot smoking jazz buff has put together this rather special playlist to give each December day a little added swagger and sparkle. Don’t forget to subscribe to our Spotify channel for more great playlists.
Within the multifarious styles of jazz there is something for everyone when it comes to Christmas. Look beyond the obvious delights of Mel Torme’s The Christmas Song and there is a great tradition of swinging, jazz Christmas tunes: Harry Connick Jr’s Jingle Bells from What A Night! and Diana Krall’s Let It Snow being fine examples of when swing and big-band musicians turn their sights on Christmas hits, the sum can often be greater than its parts. Ideal listening for late-night wrapping sessions or the odd eggnog or two…
There is a certain tranche of Christmas song that eschews the glitzy thrills of glam rock and 80s pop, preferring fireside sophistication and cosy balladry: Bill Evans & Tony Bennett’s classic duo take on A Child Is Born could warm the coldest of cockles, and Jim Hall’s Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas captures a wistful mood like only Jim Hall can. These kind of small group jazz arrangements are great fun to play, breathing surprising life into well-worn songs.
And if you need some quieter, reflective music at Christmas, don’t reach just yet for your trusty John Rutter: when jazz goes to Scandinavia the results are often introspective, intimate and melancholy: all qualities that reflect the peace of the midwinter break, and certainly present within Bugge Wesseltoft’s stunning rendition of In Dulce Jubilio from the apt It’s Snowing On My Piano.