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Christmas Playlist

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Oklahoma's Christmas History[edit]

On December 25, 1904, Oklahoma had yet to become a state. It was split into two territories, Oklahoma Territory to the west, which fell under United States jurisdiction, and Indian Territory to the east, which was under tribal self-government. But on this day, near where these two territories met, Oklahoma City had begun to take root.

The year of 1904 led to the creation of the Oklahoma Chapter of the American Federation of Musicians in Oklahoma City. During its very first Christmas celebration, musicians came together for a ceremony in which the tribal Red Men Band gifted P.F. Peterson, then-president of the Federation, a ceremonial baton to commemorate the event and future relations between Oklahoma's musicians of all backgrounds.

Since these early days of our musical heritage, Oklahoma has had its influence on music both locally and internationally. With Oklahoma's early Jazz territory bands performing regionally and its Western Swing artists performing their own renditions, Oklahoma began to create their own sound for the season.

Perhaps the most influential Christmas artist hailing from Oklahoma would be the legendary Gene Autry. In 1947, Art Satherley, recording executive at Columbia Records, suggested Autry cut a new Christmas song he had discovered, that is now long-since forgotten. For the flipside of the record, Autry remembered a song idea he'd had the previous November while participating in the annual Hollywood "Santa Claus Lane" parade. Riding his steed in the parade just ahead of Santa in his sleigh, Autry heard children on the sidewalk excitedly shouting, "Here comes Santa Claus!" Satherley took Autry's idea to Oakley Haldeman, who composed the melody to Autry’s lyrics and a Christmas classic was born.

Another artist whose song lives in infamy is Gayla Peevey. Recorded when this Ponca City native was only 10 years old, it comprises of her entire Christmas list: a hippopotamus. When released nationally by Columbia Records, the song shot to the top of the charts. Picking up on the popularity of the song, a local promoter launched a campaign to present Peevey with her very own hippopotamus. The campaign succeeded, and she was presented with an actual hippopotamus, which she donated to the Oklahoma City Zoo. The hippopotamus lived for nearly 50 years.

Over the decades, Oklahoma artists have continued to record and write Christmas music to usher in the coming of the season. With music both in the traditional and religious themes of the holiday, such as the those by The Singing Churchmen of Oklahoma, or the more secular music of Team Galaxy, Oklahoma musicians continue to spread holiday cheer wherever they are heard.

Even the successful automotive dealer Jonathan Fowler, of Fowler Automotive, has shifted his eyes from car to sleigh during the holidays to help make his home state known as the Independent Christmas Music Capital of the World. Collaborating with Blackwatch Studio in Norman, the companies launched an annual campaign to expose (mostly) local independent artists and their music to the world.

Today, we continue in the same vein, by offering our special holiday playlist: "An Oklahoma Christmas: A Sleigh Ride Through the Decades". With Christmas music from Oklahoma artists spanning the course of last century, there are undoubtedly some you are familiar with and some new classics. Listen to it in order for a journey through time, or on shuffle, we hope these songs help set the mood for your very merry Christmas!

Track Information[edit]

Statehood—1942[edit]

  1. "Good Morning Blues" by Count Basie and His Orchestra from the 1937 78 Good Morning Blues / Our Love Was Meant to Be.
  2. "Silver Bells" by Bob Wills and His Texas Playboys from the 1938 78 Silver Bells / Yearning (Just for You).

1943—1965[edit]

  1. "I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas" by Gayla Peevey from the 1953 single I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas.
  2. "(Everybody's Waitin' For) The Man with the Bag" by Kay Starr from the 1950 78 (Everybody's Waitin' For) The Man with the Bag / Christopher Robin is Saying His Prayers.
  3. "Pretty Snowflakes" by Patti Page from the 1965 album Christmas with Patti Page.
  4. "Up On the Housetop (Ho Ho Ho)" by Gene Autry from the 1957 album Christmastime with Gene Autry.
  5. "Holly" by Barney Kessel and His Men from the 1962 album Breakfast at Tiffany's.

1966—1979[edit]

  1. "Angels We Have Heard on High" by Anita Bryant from the 1972 album The Miracle of Christmas.
  2. "I Wanna Spend Christmas with You" by Lowell Fulson from the 1976 compilation album Rhythm & Blues Christmas.
  3. "Silent Night" by Elvin Bishop from the 1975 single Silent Night.
  4. "The Christmas Song" by Chet Baker & The Carmel Strings from the 1966 album Quietly There.
  5. "Old Toy Trains" by Roger Miller from the 1967 single Old Toy Trains.

1980—1999[edit]

  1. "It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year" by Vince Gill from 1998 album Breath of Heaven: A Christmas Collection.
  2. "Grown-Up Christmas List" by B. J. Thomas from the 1997 album Christmas is Coming Home.
  3. "Santa Claus is Comin' to Town" by The Tractors from the 1995 album Have Yourself a Tractors Christmas.
  4. "Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!" by Joe Diffie from the 1995 album Mr. Christmas.
  5. "Jay's Christmas Candy" by Jay McShann & Jim Galloway from the 1992 album Jim and Jay's Christmas.
  6. "Worship the King" by Sandi Patti from the 1983 album The Gift Goes On.

2000—2009[edit]

  1. "Hey Mr. Santa Claus" by Team Galaxy from the 2006 album The Sled Chronicles.
  2. "Frosty the Snowman" by Toby Keith from the 2007 album A Classic Christmas.
  3. "It Won't be Christmas Without You" by Brooks & Dunn from the 2002 album It Won't be Christmas Without You.
  4. "Silver Bells" by Kristin Chenoweth from the 2008 album A Lovely Way to Spend Christmas.
  5. "2 Yuletide Pieces, Op. 19: Impromptu" by Howard Hanson and performed by Thomas Labé from the 2000 album Howard Hanson: Works for Piano.
  6. "A Change at Christmas (Say It Isn't So)" by The Flaming Lips from the 2003 album Ego Tripping at the Gates of Hell
  7. "Santa Baby" by Kelly Willis & Bruce Robison from the 2003 album Happy Holidays.
  8. "The First Noel" by Sam Harris from the 2000 album On This Night.
  9. "Mary, Did You Know" by Kyle Dillingham from the 2011 album A Very Kyle Christmas.
  10. "The Heart of Christmas" by Bryan White from the 2006 EP My Christmas Project.
  11. "Apples in Winter / A Merry Christmas" by John McGaha from the 2009 album The Longest Night: A Winter Celebration.

2010—2019[edit]

  1. "Finally It's Christmas" by Hanson from the 2017 album Finally It's Christmas.
  2. "Hard Candy Christmas" by Reba McEntire from the 2016 album My Kind of Christmas.
  3. "Breaking the Ice" by Samantha Crain from the 2019 album Demos, Covers, Rarities (2006-2017).
  4. "Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)" by Bellwether Squares from the 2012 album Six Holiday Tunes.
  5. "Santa's Got a Choo Choo Train" by Blake Shelton from the 2012 album Cheers, It's Christmas.
  6. "In a Sentimental Mood" by Colourmusic from the 2013 album A Very Special Colourmusic Christmas, Vol. 1.
  7. "Little Drummer Boy" by Stephen Speaks and featuring We the Ghost from the 2012 album Christmas with Friends 2012.
  8. "Last Christmas" by LCG & the X from the 2019 compilation album A Blackwatch Christmas, Vol IX: Christmas in Color.
  9. "Hey Skinny Santa!" by JD McPherson from the 2018 album Socks.
  10. "Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree" by Darci Lynne from the 2018 single Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree.
  11. "God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen" by Pillar from the 2013 single God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen.
  12. "O' Holy Night" by Bryan Abrams from the 2013 album Songs for the Season.
  13. "I Wonder as I Wander" by Barron Ryan from the 2019 single I Wonder as I Wander.
  14. "Christmas Babes" by Chrome Pony from the 2011 compilation album A Blackwatch Christmas.
  15. "Christmas in Oklahoma" by Carter Sampson & Hidden Agenda Deluxe from the 2016 album Christmas from Amsterdam to Oklahoma.
  16. "Tomorrow Never Snows" by Husbands from the 2017 album XMAS 2.
  17. "Christmas Paradise" by Casey & Minna from the 2017 single Christmas Paradise.
  18. "O Little Town of Bethlehem" by Beau Jennings from the 2019 album The Christmas Light.
  19. "Christmas Cheer (Live)" by The Lunar Laugh from the 2019 single Christmas Cheer.
  20. "Winter Spirits" by The Winter Spirits from the 2017 single Winter Spirits.
  21. "It's Christmas Time" by J.Lee the Producer featuring Kizzie Ledbetter & Sean C. Johnson from the 2012 album Christmas Time with J.Lee the Producer, Vol. 1.
  22. "Merry Merry Christmas" by Camille & Haley from the 2013 album Snowing Again.
  23. "Christmas is Here" by Stars Go Dim from the 2018 EP Christmas is Here.
  24. "Funky Junky Christmas" by Darla Z and Ronnie Wilson from the 2019 album All the Best Hits!.
  25. "O Christmas Tree" by Jessica Hicks from the 2017 album A Classical Christmas.
  26. "Run Rudolph Run" by The Swon Brothers from the 2014 single Run Rudolph Run.
  27. "Go Tell It On the Mountain" by David B. Hooten from the 2019 album Renaissance Man.
  28. "Christmas Time is Here" by The Imaginaries from the 2019 album Hometown Christmas.
  29. "Sing We Now of Christmas Medley" by The Singing Churchmen of Oklahoma & The Singing ChurchWomen of Oklahoma from the 2015 album The Journey of Christmas.
  30. "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" by MercyMe from the 2019 single Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas.
  31. "Santa's Got a Rocket Sled on Rails" by The Devilish 3 from the 2019 EP Santa's Last Stop.
  32. "Tangier Christmas" by Adam Miller from the 2019 single Tangier Christmas.
  33. "Christmas Without You" by OneRepublic from the 2012 compilation album A Very Special Christmas 25th Anniversary.
  34. "Coventry Carol" by Nancy K. Dillon, Ian Lang, & Nira Michael's from the 2019 single Coventry Carol.
  35. "Greensleeves" by Injunuity from the 2011 album Nativity (Christmas with Injunuity).
  36. "Silent Night" by Sophia Massad from the 2019 EP Christmas Songs.
  37. "Happy, Happy Christmas (Remix)" by Robert Maril from the 2019 single Happy, Happy Christmas (Remix).
  38. "Holiday in the OK" by The Nghiems from the 2011 single Holiday in the OK.
  39. "Holiday Train" by Jennifer Marriott from the 2010 single Holiday Train.
  40. "O Come O Come Emmanuel" by Ciara Brooke from the 2018 single O Come O Come Emmanuel.
  41. "Okie Christmas" by Ron Flynt from the 2019 single Okie Christmas.
  42. "What Is / Greensleeves" by Dave Copenhaver from the 2016 album Thón-gya: Sounds from Within.
  43. "I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus" by Linda Barton Paul with Rose Stone Trio from the 2017 album Christmas Traditions.

2020—Today[edit]

  1. "O Come All Ye Faithful" by Carrie Underwood from the 2020 album My Gift.
  2. "Adeste Fidelis" by Ryan & Ryan from the 2020 album Adeste Fidelis.
  3. "Spirit of Christmas" by Jami Smith from the 2021 album All This is Christmas.