Create awesome party playlists
Music editor Brent DiCrescenzo picks nonschmaltzy holiday songs, and Nightlife editor Joshua P. Ferguson spins NYE dance tracks.
Brent’s “why can’t the malls play this” holiday mix
“I Wish It Was Christmas Today”
In New York City, Santa Claus looks like Joey Ramone and stuffs your stocking with cigarettes and this song.
“Ain’t No Chimneys in the Projects”
SHARON JONES & THE DAP-KINGS
No chimneys, perhaps. At least there’s killer soul, and no Anne Murray in sight.
Phil Spector: convicted murderer, hair criminal and creator of the greatest holiday album of all time.
“Got Something for You”
BEST COAST + WAVVES
The beach-loving indie couple seems more apt to smoke trees than decorate them. This brief, adorable stomp is all whistling, whoo-oo-oos and bells.
“Come on Santa”
Like a snow globe of Copenhagen, filled with vodka. And get your mind out of the gutter_the dreamy Danish shoegazers just forgot the comma.
HARLEM CHILDREN’S CHORUS
Somewhere between the Jackson 5 and the Peanuts kids.
“Carol of the Bells”
SHAWN LEE’S PING PONG ORCHESTRA
If Sergio Leone made a spaghetti Western about Santa, it’d sound like this_fuzz guitars, Italian plucking and funky drum breaks.
“Christmas As I Knew It”
You want an $800 iPad, you gadget whore? Know what Johnny Cash got his little brother, Jack? A freaking whistle he whittled by hand.
“Little Drummer Boy”
BING CROSBY & DAVID BOWIE
It could have been as crushing as Gene Kelly in Xanadu. But the eternally cool aura of the Thin White Duke makes this more of a baton passing.
“Just Like Christmas”
Minnesota’s gorgeous slowcore darlings pick up the pace with this galloping snuggle.
“Run Rudolph Run”
I love that the guy who wrote Little T&A" has an Xmas song and it doesn’t sound much different.
“Merry Xmas Everybody”
Tinsel is awesome, until the cat eats it. Add some white powder and sparkle to the air with these glittering glam stompers.
“Christmas Time Is Here”
Perfect. I’ve listened to this in June, no joke.
Josh’s “raise your glasses and your asses” New Year’s Eve dance mix
Musical mistletoe. It’s a give-in-to-the-night sort of soul, and I can’t think of a better way to kick off 2011.
“Just the Way You Are”
A hit with the ladies is always the best way to start a dance party.
“Don’t Turn the Lights On”
This song makes a dimmer switch seem like a party favor.
“Somebody to Love Me”
MARK RONSON & THE BUSINESS INTL. FEAT. BOY GEORGE AND ANDREW WYATT
Boy George’s blue-eyed soul and an Afro-pop shuffle inspire instant footwork.
When this comes on, you may want to move anything fragile out of the living room.
“Raise Your Glass”
You’re going to be popping bottles all night, right?
RYE RYE FEAT. M.I.A.
Songs that remind me of summer are always welcome.
Possibly the mega-club anthem of 2010. It’s peak-time gold and surprisingly deep.
“Starry Eyed” (Penguin Prison remix)
Your friends will ask you who this is, solidifying your reputation for having great taste in music.
“Check It Out”
NICKI MINAJ AND WILL.I.AM
Everyone’s a sucker for those doo-wop hand claps. Remember Hey Ya!"?
Sampling R. Kelly’s Bump n’ Grind" and flipping it over a hyper dance beat is bananas.
“All of the Lights”
His new album is out. Let the requests begin.
“Fool For You”
CEE LO GREEN
Every party needs a slow song; this is one of the best I’ve heard recently.
“Dog Days Are Over” (Yeasayer remix)
FLORENCE AND THE MACHINE
Once everybody’s drunk, it’s a lot easier to play what you want. Here’s my vote.