Best Black Holiday Albums

Best Black Holiday Albums

From Ella Fitzgerald to Cee Lo, Patrice Peck compiles a list of holiday music spanning five decades

December 21, 2012


Reconnecting with friends and family is one of the many perks of the holiday season. But planning for social gatherings sometimes becomes a hassle when considering the individual tastes of each guest. To take some of the pressure off of the countless hosts and hostesses gearing up for their holiday parties, this curated list takes both the most eclectic and traditional listeners into account.

Funkmasters Cee Lo Green and James Brown offer sounds guaranteed to liven up any get-together. “It’s a really daring, dynamic, dazzling array of Christmas classics sung with the sweet soul of Cee Lo Green,” The Voice judge said of his new album, Cee Lo’s Magic Moments. “How could you lose?”

Those eager to slow it down should opt for the velvet vocals of Luther Vandross, Ledisi and Boyz II Men, who set a sentimental mood for the grown and sexy crowd. Sultry Motown crooner Kem recently spoke with The Huffington Post about his holiday album, What Christmas Means. “Half of the album is original compositions, and I chose the other half to be some of my favorite cover songs. But I put a different spin on the songs,” he said. “I did them in ways that I haven’t heard anyone do them before.”

If interested in venturing out of the traditional, look out for the hip-hop and reggae selections on the list as well. For a more diplomatic approach to preparing a holiday soundtrack, try creating a playlist that features a diverse mix of all these acclaimed artists.

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