If you're single, like me, or just know some nice single people in your life that haven't been in the Christmas spirit, then this playlist is for you. The holiday season can get you down when you don't have someone special to spend it with and it gets to be surprisingly hard to keep up a smile for appearance's sake. For me, the final straw was driving home after work and seeing a young couple in matching Christmas sweaters walking their dog around the neighborhood. Like we get it, you're happy. Stop flaunting it. Don't they know that everyone else is quietly batting back tears of perpetual loneliness? So to get back to the point this collection of songs is best enjoyed by wearing fuzzy pajamas with some spiked hot cider or mulled wine in front of that one Netflix channel which is just a fake fireplace (Millenials can't afford real fireplaces).
This list is in no particular order but feel free to leave a comment with your rankings in order of sadness.
White Christmas- Bing Crosby
This song is about as much of a classic as you can get but when you really take a minute to listen to it you can't help but feel the yearning in Crosby's voice. Singles all know about that sense of longing and wanting something they don't have whether its snow or a boyfriend.
Christmas Lights- Coldplay
Chris Martin may have taken Coldplay into the dumps lately but that doesn't take away from how he can make you feel when it is just him and a piano to lull you into a hallucinogenic Christmas dream. This song perfectly captures that bit of hope that we all cling to so as to avoid sinking into the despair of singleness that awaits our demise.
Last Christmas- Wham!
It would be a sin for a gay writer to not acknowledge one of the most quintessential singers of our brood, especially when their music fits the theme so perfectly. This song is definitely one of the most covered Christmas songs, and for good reason. The catchy pop instrumentals bring a bit of brevity to an otherwise very sad call for help. To have a song so sad sound so happy is quite difficult to manage and George Michael pulled it off spectacularly. Hopefully you don't find yourself in his shoes this Chrismas dear Reader.
Christmases When You Were Mine- Taylor Swift
This song came up on my shuffle last week which ultimately inspired this post. Back when Taylor was still a Country-Pop princess she gifted us with a brilliant Christmas EP with two original songs, this being one of them. I've never been in a relationship so I pretty much have to imagine what she's feeling but it still hurts every time I listen to it. An anthem for everyone alone during the holidays, truly!
I Hate Christmas Parties- Reliant K
Omg I could go on for hours about how much this album means to me but I will keep this brief. When I first heard this song I distinctly remember tearing up because I found myself getting caught up in the narrative and just being super empathic to the whole situation. No one likes being the person that everyone pities, and when you're in a group setting such as a Christmas party it becomes painfully hard to avoid the looks and glances especially when you share a friend group with your ex. "You and the cookie tray both hear me say Bah Humbug" is one of my favorite lines of any holiday song which now that I type this really makes me wonder about myself.
Snow- Sleeping At Last
If you listen to the lyrics this song is actually uplifting in a way even if the melodies are so depressing, but like in a good way. The main message that I get is that we have different Christmas experiences each year, some good and some not so good. We can't let one bad year define each new one coming up just like eventually the dirty snow gets renewed with each new snowfall. We may be single this year, but who knows what 2018 will bring? Beyond hellfire, that is.
Hard Candy Christmas- Dolly Parton
Originally written for the musical, The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas, this song for me is eternal. I can listen to it anytime during the year, but it becomes especially poignant during the Holiday season when the loneliness really begins to set in. Nothing is more of a Hard Candy Christmas than watching everyone else pair up under the mistletoe while you sip your wine in the corner.
Blue Christmas (Under the Covers)- Max Jury
Though most famously performed by Elvis Presley, I prefer how sparse this cover is. Jury takes the track to the barebones of vocals over piano and delivers an emotionally charged ballad perfect for those lamenting the loved ones that walked away. Also to be fair this might be biased because I think Max is an underrated voice in Americana that deserves more listeners.
Merry Christmas Darling- Carpenters
I think I'm taking this song completely out of context in my including it in this list, in the sense that the singer is addressing her partner who is away, whereas I take it as someone singing to a fictional loved one, or the eventual love of your life. Just me? Okay... I'll see my way out. Anyways she conveys a similar longing and vibe as White Christmas back at the top and is a worthy addition to any Christmas playlist.
"I wish I were with youuu"
-my fictional partner to me
All I Want for Christmas is You- Mariah Carey
Okay, we were all waiting for this to show up on the list and honestly, I did this on purpose. You have to save the best for last. It is a fact by nature of every terrible tv sitcom abusing this idiom. This song is a new classic and will remain forever eternal in the hearts of everyone who loves Christmas. Luckily it also matches the theme of this listicle where like Mariah, I too am waiting under the mistletoe for someone to kiss me. Like at this point I'd settle for a kiss from my dog who hates showing any emotion beyond fear.
Spotify list for those who like that sort of thing minus the Taylor track because she's awful and doesn't stream all of her music.
What are some of your favorite Christmas songs (sad or otherwise)? Leave them in the comments below!