Day 17: O Holy Night x57

Miss Mussel is not a huge fan of O Holy Night the song, as such, but is very interested in the social dynamics surrounding its performance particularly in non-big city churches on Christmas Eve. It seems at every one there is one good singer (or one that was good)(or one that is at least better than the others) that gets the gig every year. In the same way that the American national anthem is exciting because of the build-up (Oh say does…< of the freeeeee), from the opening arpeggio, everyone, including the singer, is waiting to see what will happen at the high note. O Holy Night is a sort of vocal benchmark, meaning if you have the chops to do it justice, you're probably reasonably good. Miss Mussel saw Matt Andersen give - hands down - the best rendition she's ever heard last night at the Centre In The Square. Excited to share this discovery with the wider world, Miss Mussel dialed up Youtube when she got home but alas there was nothing. [Attn Vinyl Cafe people: please add to your To Do Immediately list] It seems, however, that everyone who dares to call themselves a singer has had a go. The following is a list that will warm the heart of comparison shoppers everywhere: 57 versions of O Holy Night arranged alphabetically by first name. UPDATE 21/12: Matt Andersen is now on Youtube!

Computer Tip: If you would like to listen to multiple versions, press either Control (Windows) or Apple key (Mac) before you click to open the link in a new tab. It will save you having to hit the back button all the time to get back to this list.

Aled Jones | Alicia Keys | Andy Williams | Anne Murray | Aretha Franklin & Billy Preston | Avril Lavigne with Chantal Kraviazuk | Birgit Nilsson | Carrie Underwood | Celine Dion | Choir of King’s College, Cambridge | Christina Aguilera | David Phelps | Dianna Ross mit Carreras and Domingo | Donna Summer | Enrico Caruso | Eric Cartman | Georges Thrill | Harry Connick Jr. | Jennifer Hudson | Jessica Simpson | Joan Baez en francais |John Denver | Johnny Mathis | Jonas Kaufmann | Jose Carreras | Josh Groban | Juan Diego Florez | Jussi Bjorling | Kelly Clarkson | Kenny Rogers | Kiri Te Kanawa | LeeAnn Rimes | Leontyne Price | Luciano Pavarotti | Mariah Carey | Marian Anderson | Mario Lanza | Martina McBride | Men Alive | Mormon Tabernacle Choir | Nat King Cole | Neil Diamond | ‘NSYNC | Patti Labelle | Paul Potts | Placido Domingo | PS 22 Chorus | Roberto Alagna | Sandi Patti | Singing Priests | That Hilariously Awful Version That Gets Emailed Every Christmas | The Judds | The King’s Singers | Tracy Chapman | Trans-Siberian Orchestra | Weezer

Miss Mussel is curious as to what your favourite version is. Assuming the reverse is true, for her money no one beats Pav but the kids at PS 22 are perilously close to toppling the king.

2 comments

  1. What an awesome list … even within the first five, you get everything from Alicia Keys’ strange harmonies through to Andy Williams’ white trousers. It’s definitely got to be near the top of the list for Most Indestructible Song. Maybe ’cause we only hear it once month of the year.

    • Miss Mussel
      Author

      Thanks! I was originally going to only do about 10 or so but the I got lost in a Youtube black hole and couldn’t stop linking. Jingle Bells is another one on the Indestructible list for me — it doesn’t seem to matter what you do to it; somehow it always sounds at least halfway decent.

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