Kimberly Small, writing for Jamaica’s Gleaner has shared her “Yard” playlist. Here it is. Enjoy.
Considering Jamaica’s proximity to the equator, most Jamaicans cannot relate to Bing Crosby’s White Christmas. Regardless, the festivities carry on and to help you get fully immersed in the Yuletide holiday, we have compiled a playlist of Christmas songs and carols, done in trly Jamaican style.
Jamaican tradition will find many families ‘chopping it up’ in the kitchen bright and early on Christmas morning. As the family rises with the sun, in excitement for the holiday – and as the matriarchs and resident chefs commandeer the stove before breakfast, a self-appointed deejay can head to the turntables (or rather a laptop or smartphone) to play the following covers by Jamaican and Caribbean nationals in the spirit of Christmas and the rhythm of reggae.
1. Caribbean Style Christmas Medley by Mighty Sparrow
2. Christmas In The Air by Sanchez
3. The Christmas Song by Beres Hammond
4. Breadfruit Roasting On An Open Fire by Yellowman
5. Jingle Bells by Don Carlos
6. Come All Ye Faithful by Freddie McGregor
7. O Little Town Of Bethlehem by Horace Andy
8. We Three Kings by The Joe Gibbs All Stars
9. Give Love On Christmas Day by Carlene Davis
10. All I Want For Christmas Is You by Tosh Alexander
11. This Christmas by Tosh Alexander ft Chris Martin
12. Little Drummer Boy by Carlene Davis
13. Oh Holy Night by Tessanne Chin
14. Santa Clause, Do You Ever Come To The Ghetto by Chronixx
Though most of these early morning/mid-afternoon plays are cover songs, dancehall star Yellowman made his way into the morning playlist (#4) with his rendition of The Christmas Song. Cultural variances have been highlighted and sung by other Jamaican artistes, to make carolling resemble life at home. So, after tummies are filled and the adults have imbibed special sorrel, jugs of eggnog and a beer to top it all off, here are some songs that may incite a laugh or two, and will likely open up a dancehall in your living room.
15. Trumpet Blows (Jingle Bells) by Mr Mention
16. Santa Claus Never Comes To The Ghetto by Yellowman
17. 12 Days of Christmas by Peter Broggs
18. Christmas A Come by Eek A Mouse
19. On The 12 Days Of Ismas by Jacob Miller & Ray I
20. I Saw Mommy Kiss A Dreadlocks by Barrington Levy
21. All I Want For Ismas by Jacob Miller & Ray I
22. The Night Before Christmas by Eek A Mouse
23. Warm Jamaican Christmas by Wayne Wonder
24. 12 Days of Christmas (Freestyle) by Busy Signal
25. We Wish You A Reggae Christmas by Yellowman
26. Deck The Halls by Jacob Miller and Ray I
27. Silver Bells by Jacob Miller and Ray I
28. All I Want for Ismas by Jacob Miller and Ray I
29. We Wish You Ah Irie Christmas by Jacob Miller and Ray I
A special note for the album Natty Christmas (1978) by Jacob Miller and Ray I, which features the aforementioned tracks; it has been listed at#23 on Rolling Stone’s Top 25 Christmas Albums.