Deck the halls and dig out the wrapping paper. There are only three shopping Saturdays left between now and Christmas Eve. And, there’s a sleigh’s worth of new country Christmas albums/EPs to provide the soundtrack for the sugarplum holiday cheer.
Brett Young: “Brett Young & Friends Sing The Christmas Classics” is an eight-song collection that boasts collaborations with Colbie Caillat, Sam Fischer, Dann Huff, Darius Rucker, Maddie & Tae, Chris Tomlin and Phil Wickham.
When the album is over, tune into “CMT CROSSROADS Christmas: BRETT YOUNG & FRIENDS” with special guests Boyz II Men, Chris Tomlin, Colbie Caillat, Dann Huff, Darius Rucker, Gavin DeGraw and Maddie & Tae 8p/7c Dec. 8 on CMT.
Kelly Clarkson: The 15-track “When Christmas Comes Around” features an array of duets, including Ariana Grande, Brett Eldredge and Chris Stapleton. The song list includes “Christmas Isn’t Canceled (Just You),” “Glow” and “Santa, Can You Hear Me” and classic Christmas covers “It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas,” “Santa Baby,” “Last Christmas” and more.
Brett Eldredge: “Mr. Christmas” mixes well-known holiday classics with eclectic tunes and two original Christmas songs for the singer’s second Christmas album. Heavy on horns and Eldredge’s holiday charm, the album includes “It’s The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year,” “Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer” and the title track, which Eldredge wrote with Ross Copperman during the pandemic.
Pistol Annies: “Hell of a Holiday” comprises 13 songs – 10 originals the women co-wrote together and three classics. The album’s lead single “Snow Globe,” an up-tempo relationship song about blocking out the world, is out now. The covers include Merle Haggard’s “If We Make it Through December,” “Sleigh Ride,” and their interpretation of “Auld Lang Syne.”
Josh Turner: Turner honed in on classic country tenets in many of the songs on his “King Size Manger” album that features duets with Rhonda Vincent, Jake Shimabukuro and Ho’okena, Pat McLaughlin, and Turner’s wife and children. His 11-song album is a mix of originals and Christmas classics with fresh, reimagined arrangements that run the gamut of country music.
Cody Johnson: “A Cody Johnson Christmas” is in Johnson’s traditional country style and includes Willie Nelson’s “Pretty Paper,” Merle Haggard’s “If We Make it Through December,” originals “Christmas All Year Long” and “Hat Made of Mistletoe” and classics “Away in a Manger,” “Silent Night” featuring his wife and daughters and “Feliz Navidad” with Kevin Fowler and Roger Creager.
Steve Wariner: “Feels Like Christmas” features reimagined arrangements of Christmas classics including “Silent Night,” “The First Noel” and “It Came Upon a Midnight Clear.” Six original holiday songs are all written by Wariner are included, too. “Feels Like Christmas” also feels like Wariner’s birthday — he was born on Christmas Day.
Carrie Underwood: Underwood added three original songs – including a “Something in the Water” medley – to her Christmas album “My Gift,” which debuted last year.
Mitchell Tenpenny: “The Naughty List” includes the seven songs from his 2020 holiday release “Neon Christmas” and four new tunes. Tenpenny wrote two new originals for the project — “Don’t Hang the Mistletoe” and “I Hope It Snows,” a duet with his fiancée Meghan Patrick.
Steve Holy: “A Christmas to Remember” is Holy’s first time back in the recording studio in a decade and consists of Bing Crosby’s “I’ll Be Home for Christmas,” Elvis Presley’s “Santa Claus Is Back In Town” and a ’60s swing by Charles Brown called “Bringing In A Brand New Year.”
Tenille Townes: The Canadian’s “Songs for Christmas” EP is four songs, including a version of Willie Nelson’s “Pretty Paper” and new song “Christmas Cards” written by Townes, Brandy Clark and Luke Dick.