Rock stars mix holiday music in their own personalized playlists

By Tom Sinclair and Laura Morgan
December 10, 1999 at 05:00 AM EST

Haven’t found a holiday album that jingles your bells? Try customizing your Christmas with MP3s, a CD burner, or even an old-fashioned cassette. Here’s how some musicians would work a DIY Xmas.

KID ROCK‘Christmas in Hollis,” Run D.M.C. ”Talk about great Christmas songs—yeah!” ”Santa’s Rap,” The Treacherous Three ”The one that went ‘Ho, ho, ho—open up yo’ do’.’ It was from the movie Beat Street.” ”This Christmas,” Donnie Hathaway ”It’s a big ballad, a really good soul song.” ”Jingle F—in’ Bells,” Blowfly ”He was a comedian who made a lot of dirty raps. It’s great.”

DAVE MUSTAINE, MEGADETH‘White Christmas,” Bing Crosby and ”Have a Holly, Jolly Christmas,” Burl Ives ”Because they’re such classics.” ”No Presents for Christmas,” King Diamond ”He was the singer in Mercyful Fate. An early ’80s Danish band—falsetto singing, great guitar riffs. And the lyrics are not for family fun and entertainment.”

EVE ”Silent Night,” the Temptations ”I don’t celebrate Christmas, but I love their version; it’s really soulful.” ”Best Man,” Faith Evans (from The Best Man soundtrack) ”People go through things during the holidays, you know what I’m saying? But the beat just makes you want to dance.” ”Gotta Man,” EVE ”You want to be spending time with your boyfriend around the holidays. That’s what I’ll be doing.” ”Time,” Mary J. Blige ”She’s saying, ‘If I had my way, things would be fine.’ It’s a hope song about making the world better.”

MANDY MOORE ”I’ll Be Home for Christmas,” Amy Grant ”Because after being on the road, I can’t wait to go home and spend the holidays with family and friends.” ”Holiday,” Madonna ”I love all Madonna songs, but this one especially. It can apply to Christmas and New Year’s and is fun to dance to.” ”1999,” Prince ”We’re moving into the millennium in style—it’s a fun party song.”

JOHNNY RZEZNIK, THE GOO GOO DOLLS ”River,” Joni Mitchell ”From her Blue album. It’s really depressing. It’s got this strange, melancholy tinge to it, like Christmas.” ‘‘Father Christmas,” the Kinks ”Another depressing one.” A Charlie Brown Christmas, the Vince Guaraldi Trio (Fantasy, 1965) ”The whole album is so great, I can’t pick one song.” ‘‘You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch,” Thurl Ravenscroft ”The guy who did that was the same guy who did Tony the Tiger’s voice.”

JILL CUNNIFF, Luscious Jackson ”Little Drummer Boy,” Marlene Dietrich from The Best of Christmas (Capitol, 1990) ”Marlene’s rendition is sultry and haunting.” ”Blue Xmas,” Miles Davis and Bob Dorough from Jingle Bell Jazz (Columbia, 1962) ”I love Christmas, but any song that describes the Christmas shopping frenzy as ‘all the sham, all the haste and plain old bad taste’ is okay with me.”