'Tis the season for Christmas tunes. And though part of the allure for crafting a holiday playlist is the familiarity of staples such as "White Christmas" or "Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree," it's always a good idea to filter in some lesser known, original tunes. Over the past few years, a handful of D-FW artists have released uniquely original Christmas songs, with a focus on, shall we say, the less joyful side of the season.
Recently, Trey Johnson -- the longtime leader of beloved Dallas band Sorta and co-founder of State Fair Records -- offered up the gorgeous "It's a Boy," a modern take on the classic Christian Christmas carol. The most beloved of Christmas carols have gained such status thanks to an alluring blend of majesty and approachability. Johnson nails that recipe here.
Here's a playlist of our favorite holiday tunes from local artists over the past few years. We'll spotlight our favorites below.
Nate Kipp, "It's Christmas"
With a little help from Andie Kay Joyner, Dallas honky tonk man Nate Kipp released a he/she holiday duet that beats the stuffing out of the always-creepy "Baby, It's Cold Outside."
Dead Flowers, "A Lot Like Xmas"
Any holiday can easily turn sad. With memories of previous years spent with a loved one who left, the chilly temps and gray skies of Christmas time have a way of really bringing out the blues. Just ask the Dead Flowers, who gave us the coolest, bluest, most plugged-in garage rock Christmas song ever, "A Lot Like Xmas."
Ronnie Fauss, "Everybody Deserves a Merry Christmas"
Dallas alt-country troubadour Ronnie Fauss has long been one of the better yarn spinners around these parts. His special Christmas song from a few years ago, "Everybody Deserves a Merry Christmas," is but a seasonally-specific example of his keen ability to weave the insightful and humorous into the standard holiday formula.
Danny Balis, "Little Silver Cross"
Danny Balis is well-known as a big time radio personality, the co-owner of the Twilite Lounge and as the bass player for local rock band Calhoun, but for a couple of years not too long ago, Balis was also a standout solo country artist. After releasing his excellent 2009 LP, Too Much Living, he offered up "Little Silver Cross," a pretty, softly melodic tune inspired by a poem about a prostitute visiting her family over the holidays.
Now, take that, "Holly Jolly Christmas"!