The Best Indie Christmas Songs

With December moving rapidly through the winter cold, you are probably yearning or encountering a substantial amount of holiday festive tunes. It is that time of year, where family and friendships cherish their connections with one another through holiday laughs, warmth and togetherness. But the classic holiday songs, may be a bit tired some when walking eagerly around the mall shopping for last minute gifts. Or, watching some of the holiday classic movies or some cheesy Netflix Christmas originals. If you are alternative with an indie flair like myself, All I want for Christmas by “Mariah Carey” can only do so much. This collection of indie holiday favourites will bring another magical layer upon your holiday season.

Winter Song

We first start the playlist with smooth almost somber vibes with fragile imagery of winter. With a beautiful collaboration with American singer songwriter Ingrid Michaelson and Love Song singer Sara Bareilles, melt our hearts through a majestic ballad of winter sounds. With similar indie sound, this was a collaboration indie listeners yearned for.

As Winter Song continues through the delicate snow the phrase “Is love Alive?” layers through an atmosphere of angelic harmonies. This one is will surely be a new holiday classic!


Christmas In Prison

The essence of the holidays is to bring people together. This notion does not stop at the music community.

With collaborations fuelling the holiday spirit another fantastic pairing is English singer songwriter Emmy the Great and Lightspeed Champion also known as Blood Orange recreate the holiday vibes through song.

With the simplistic sound and mellow energy, the song Christmas In Prison is perfect to ease the mood of holiday shopping for dinner preparation.


Have Yourself A Very Merry Christmas

A vintage sound sets the tone for the holidays. It is a classic sound that embodied the essence of simpler times, and is crucial for the holiday season.

Folk rock legend, Cat Power, revives the ‘small cabin in the woods’ feeling with her touch of indie folk treasure in Have Yourself A Very Merry Christmas.


Last Christmas

One of my favourite Christmas songs, is Last Christmas by English pop duo Wham!. The melody warms your heart and makes you feel a sentimental feeling of love during the December festivities.

Many artists around the world have covered this song, but one artist seems to really captivates the indie music perspective.

Formed in 1993, American rock band, Jimmy Eat World, has found a particular section and place in many music listeners hearts.

This rendition pairs well with the warmth of the fireplace and a nice hot wine! Make sure you couple of with your loved one for this song!



Alternative rock band Death Cab for Cutie brings in the holiday motion with their rendition of Christmas.

This easy going and slightly mellow version of the happy bubble song just proves why indie rock is the best kind of music for a perfect holiday gathering.

If you enjoy the sounds of Death Cab for Cutie then you won’t be dissatisfied with the alternative sounds of Louisville, Kentucky band My Morning Jacket.

With their second most well-known song, the track One Big Holiday is featured on their 2003 It Still Moves album.  To bring the festive indie sounds to your holiday, this one is an essential.


Christmas At The Zoo

I am a musical enthusiast for psychedelic shoegaze rock style of musical interpretation. Created by one of my favorite bands led by Wayne Coyne, the band Flaming Lips has no limit to what they create.

Their song Christmas at the Zoo is my more than crucial for the holiday season – it is required.

Through the experimental Avant Garde vintage sound, this song has a prominent place on your holiday playlist and perfect to set an experimental atmosphere for the holiday festivities.


If We Make It Through December

The holiday times do not always have to bring a happy atmosphere. Many of my favorite holiday songs are ones with a melancholy undertone.

With their fragile and angelic voices, there is no doubt that this artist creates the perfect aesthetic for an emotionally driven holiday season. folk rock artist Phoebe Bridgers melts our mind and hearts into a dreamy holiday state.

The singer-songwriter has other holiday songs and would be perfect to add onto your alternative-indie playlist.


Frosty The Snowman

Another songstress that soothes the holiday vibes with their unique musical approach is Fiona Apple. This sensational singer is a staple and legend within the alternative folk rock and indie musical scene.

Frosty the Snowman is such a cute, fuzzy joyful song that tells the story of a jolly snowman! The artist voice pairs simultaneously with the bubbly tale and earns a prominent spot on the playlist to spread happy joyful times during the month of December.

So, as your December continues to fill your heart and soul with holiday cheer, give those indie sounds for all to hear! Happy holidays!

Photos: Shutterstock / Edited by: Martina Advaney

Want to go green this Christmas? Here are some last minute tips:

Eco-Friendly Christmas Guide Part One: Greener Gifts & Wrapping

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