As November approaches, we all start to feel the excitement and joy in the air: Christmas, the best holiday of the year is around the corner!
There are many, many reasons to love and eagerly wait for Christmas: Getting to take a break from work and all work-related stress in order to spend quality time with our family and loved ones, curling up under a warm and fuzzy blanket to devour hot drinks and enjoy the enchanting beauty of snowfall, buying and receiving well thought out presents, eating absolutely delicious traditional dishes and cookies, decorating our homes and getting Christmas trees, and most importantly, relishing the joyful Christmas tunes.
Christmas music can be considered as an umbrella term that covers various musical customs and genres. A Christmas song can be a HipHop track, a pop song, a rock song or even a metal song! Tracks often called as Christmas music can be solely instrumental or have lyrics that often focus on the nativity of Jesus Christ, Christmas time, Christmas miracles, cultural figures often associated with Christmas, such as Santa Claus, winter season, and a lot more. If you are looking for merry Christmas songs that you can use in your videos, streams and commercial projects, you should take a closer look at our Christmas royalty free music
library where you can find thousands of non copyrighted, popular Christmas songs.
One of the most popular subgenres of Christmas music is, of course, Christmas carols. Also known as Christmas hymns, carols often have lyrics with religious themes. They can mention Christmas customs and traditions, beauty of the winter season, birth and miracles of Jesus and various similar topics.
Having a very rich and long history, Christmas carols employ a wide range of different instruments including but not limited to piano, violin and other sting instruments, and wind instruments. What makes Christmas carols unique is their musical structure: A significant majority of carols are based on medieval chord patterns, that is why they have a very unique sound and tempo.
The oldest known Christmas carol is believed to date back to 4th century Rome. Around that time, most popular carols were written in Latin and had significant religious themes. In addition, carols of that time had the aim of spreading certain Christological doctrines. Two of the prominent examples of such carols is Veni Redemptor Gentium and Corde Natus Ex Parentis (Of the Father’s Heart Begotten). In fact, the latter is still performed in some churches even today.
In 9th and 10th centuries, Christmas carols became less “high brow” and more accessible to the majority of the population: Lyrics of the carols from this period were in sequences of rhymed stanzas.
It was around 12th century when Christmas carols took a more secular turn. Popular songs were adapted into carols and the musical structure of today’s carols was formed in this period. In the 14th century, Christmas carolers who went from house to house made their first appearance and this tradition managed to survive for centuries. After the Reformation in Christian countries, Christmas carols became much more popular.
In our day, most Christmas carols are sung in churches during religious services yet there are many more secular carols that can find themselves a place outside church –such as Silent Night and Joy to the World.
There are various other sub-types of Christmas songs as well. Most of these songs are distinguished from carols in regard to their lyrics: They don’t focus on the religious nature of the holiday. Instead they tell about the beauty of winter, excitement associated with this time of the year, presents, family gatherings, traditional Christmas stories and figures like Santa Claus or his elves. Some Christmas songs are aimed at children, such as Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer. Some others cater to adults, such as the Christmas classic and Mariah Carey’s absolute hit All I Want for Christmas is You.
Bobby Helms’ Jingle Bell Rock, Michael Bublé’s It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas, Elvis Presley’s Here Comes Santa Claus, Nat King Cole’s Deck the Halls are some of the most popular and beloved Christmas songs in different genres. Although they abide by different musical customs, most Christmas songs share a set of defining characteristics like having cheerful lyrics, or employing piano, bells and wind instruments.
If you want to welcome the spirit of Christmas into your home, workplace, or event, take a closer look at the top 10 Christmas songs we listed below for you. If you want to create a joyful and engaging holiday greetings video for your YouTube channel or Instagram profile, you can use the songs we shortlisted below or discover our royalty free Christmas music for videos