Many family Christmas celebrations revolve around music. For the family that enjoys music there is no better joy than gathering around the piano to belt out the carols together or (if your family is less musically inclined) simply listening to the classic carols will do. This holiday gather your family together, warm up the hot chocolate and try singing a few of these family friendly carols. Who knows, you just might be inspired to hit the road with a little caroling! Here are the top ten family Christmas songs listed in no particular order.
1.Jingle Bells-There may be no other carol that everyone knows as well. This very famous song was written by James Pierpont and was originally entitled “One Horse Open Sleigh”. Pierpont was born in Medford, Massachusetts where he lived with his wife Eliza Purse, with whom he had a large family, and his father, Reverend John Pierpont, who was the pastor of the First Medford Unitarian Church. One particular day James Pierpont went to the home of Mrs. Otis Waterman, who owned the only piano in town to play the carol. She loved it and the song became an instant hit. Jingle Bells was published and copyrighted by the year 1857.
2.We Wish You a Merry Christmas- The origins and the composer of this famous and easy to sing carol is unknown. But with its simple lyrics and tune any family can sing it with ease.
3.It’s Beginning to Feel a lot like Christmas-This song was written by Meredith Willson in 1951; during this time a lot of feel-good Christmas music was written and recorded. Many families like this song as they prepare for the upcoming holiday season.
4.Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer-What makes a carol family friendly is the fact that everyone seems to know it. Just about anyone of any age can sing this timeless tale of the red-nosed reindeer that came to Santa’s rescue. Written in 1949 by Steve Rollins and Steve Nelson, and when it was recorded by Gene Autry it was a huge hit.
5.Frosty the Snowman-This song was actually a follow-up by the award winning song writing duo who wrote, “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer. While they were initially hesitant about trying to follow the huge success of Rudolph this song went on to sell even more copies in 1950 when it was recorded by Gene Autry as well.
6.Over the River and Through the Woods to Grandmother’s House We Go-There is no other song that so clearly depicts the journey to gather with family. Whether your family has to come from far away or just a few miles they will enjoy singing this song together. Written in 1844 by Lydia Maria Child this song has stood the test of time.
7.Have a Holly Jolly Christmas-This bouncy carol will be an attractive song for your family to sing. While many people think Burl Ives wrote this catchy tune he only recorded the most popular version of it. This song was actually written by Johnny Marks from Mt. Vernon, New York. He was not known as a composer but as a radio producer.
8.Joy to the World-Many families enjoy singing this jubilant carol. While there are many complicated arrangements of this song, many think the simple singing of this carol is best. Isaac Watts wrote this unforgettable carol as a poem back in 1719.
9.Away in a Manger-James Murray wrote the lyrics for this beautiful hymn back in 1877; it was not until ten years later in 1887 that he finally wrote the music to accompany them. Martin Luther is often falsely given credit for writing this song because of a publishing error. Many families enjoy singing this song as part of their religious observance of Christmas.
10.Silent Night-This is another song that many families incorporate into the religious worship during the Christmas season. This famous German carol was actually first performed in Austria after being written by Josef Mohr (lyrics) and Franz Gruber (music). This is the most translated carol in the world since its origination in 1816.