Merry Madness — The Tournament of Holiday Music (Part 1)

Okay, here it is.

This was not easy and, as I mentioned in my preview post, it is bound to be the cause of great disagreement. I welcome all snarky comments, enlightened discourse and subtly solicited compliments.

Before I post the Four Regions of our Merry Madness Tournament, a few notes about the selection process.

  1. With rare exception, these are primarily individual artists or small groups. No big choirs or orchestras (not counting those of the Trans-Siberian variety).
  2. This is a combination of “best” and “most loved”. While I would love to be cool enough to tell you that I think the Pogues and RUN D.M.C. are what Christmas should mean to everyone, it’s just not true.
  3. For the most part, there are no repeats in songs. There are only two songs with multiple (two) versions. This was to recognize the wonderful ingenuity of the differences between these specific renditions. But ultimately, we were looking for as much variety as possible.
  4. If it was close, I tried to choose songs that would get you in the holiday mood. If the arrangement and vocals paired well with Egg Nog, it went a long way in getting that track on this bracket.

If I’m forgetting anything, I’m sure I’ll hear about it. Here goes:

The West:

The East:

The Southwest:

The North Pole:

Print them out, put them on your wall, play along at work or home. The full Google Doc spreadsheet is available to view here.

Check back or follow for updates as these songs battle it out for holiday musical eminence. The first round starts in just a few days.

And hey, Merry Christmas.

-j

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