Unconventional Christmas Songs

Crosby and Bowie

It’s Christmas Day, and by now you’re probably pretty sick of all the Christmas music you’ve been hearing for nearly two months, or you’ve loved every minute of it…I’m not judging. Either way the last thing anyone needs is another list of the typical holiday songs that are played a thousand times every year.

No, this is a list of unconventional Christmas songs. So either they’re unconventional versions of famous songs or off-the-wall songs altogether, consider this your Christmas song alternative.

Bing Crosby/David Bowie – “Peace on Earth/Little Drummer Boy”

When it comes to musical pairings this might be one of the most unusual and unconventional ever. On the one hand you’ve got an aging crooner and on the other you’ve got a young Ziggy Stardust combining on a Christmas classic. The results…work. Somehow it works.

VAST – “The Grinch”

For anyone that never listened to VAST, they were a very cool indie band from the late 90s that had a very unique sound. Here is their take on the classic Grinch song. If you like what you hear I highly recommend checking out their other (non Christmas) work.

The Killers – “Don’t Shoot Me Santa”

What could be more unconventional that a song imploring Saint Nick to not murder you? This song by the Killers is definitely not something you want to play around the kids, but it does have a pretty catchy hook.

Weird Al Yankovic – “Christmas at Ground Zero”

Whether you consider him a geek, a joke, or a musical genius there’s no denying that Weird Al marches to the beat of his own drum. Nothing says unconventional like a song about Christmas during a nuclear explosion.

Eve 6 – “The First Noel”

If you’re going to go Christmas music then it should at least be something that you can rock out to and that’s exactly what these Southern California rockers did. Best known for their hit “Inside Out” they add some fun to this Christmas classic and ultimately that’s what separates this from other cover versions.

Gayla Peevey – “I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas”

While Mariah Carey annoyingly keeps singing about wanting “you for Christmas” and some annoying kid sings about wanting their two front teeth, Gayla Peevey wasn’t having any of that. Go big or go home they say, and Peevey definitely goes big on her Christmas wish. On the one hand this song is clearly a novelty song, on the other hand, it’s kinda catchy. Either way, it’s definitely not a conventional Christmas tune.

Keith Richards – “Run Rudolph Run”

Pretty much everything about Keith Richards is unconventional, including how he’s still alive. This version of Chuck Berry’s classic has all the Richards hallmarks including the drug-addled voice. But still, there’s something pretty charming about this Christmas song from such an unexpected source.

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