Co-written with Melissa
It’s been years since we first heard that the Backstreet Boys were considering recording a Christmas album. We know they like to operate on Backstreet time, and we’ve all become accustomed to that, but that doesn’t mean that we haven’t been impatiently waiting for any and all mention of when this might actually happen.
Thanks to Howie D, we now know that the boys have a goal set to finish recording this long-awaited album by June. Although he didn’t specify 2021 so we suppose that is still up for debate! Whether we are being graced with a new Backstreet Boys album by the end of this year or not, we’ve been dreaming of listening to those beautiful voices on some of the Christmas classics we’ve all heard and loved.
The boys themselves have teased us with some performances, from Nick as the endearing Pink Crocodile covering Silent Night on the Masked Singer to an acoustic performance of Winter Wonderland that they did with Pentatonix and even 2 original Christmas songs they’ve released previously. While we continue to wait for this album to drop, or one of the boys to provide us with a little tease, we’ve compiled a list of songs which are high contenders to make the album. Here are our picks and why we feel they could/should be on the album:
Run Run Rudolph: Think about the antics the boys are known for during their shows. Their onstage chemistry is adorable and playful. Not only does this song have a rock feel that suits Nick and AJ’s vocals perfectly, it also allows for extra energy and liveliness for which the boys are known. And we can’t ignore the fact that one of Nick’s biggest musical influences, Bryan Adams, covered this one as well.
Silent Night: Nick gave us all a preview of this one when he sang it as the Pink Crocodile on the Masked Singer. Adding the rest of the boys to this iconic classic would add so much depth to the song. The boys are very aware of their fans’ reactions to this song. It’s hard to imagine they would ignore it and not capitalize on this kind of opportunity.
White Christmas: According to the Guiness Book of World Records, Irving Berlin’s iconic White Christmas (made popular by Bing Crosby) is the number one most recorded Christmas song of all time. One might think that the boys would be reluctant to do what so many others have already done. However, this song is a classic for a reason. It evokes feelings of peace and calm happiness that we all long for during the holidays. It is a simple song with a lovely message that lends itself to artistic expression. Our boys would not only do the song justice, but they would have the opportunity to play with different harmonies.
Santa Claus is Coming to Town: This is an interesting pick, but we’ve got to consider that all of the boys are parents. It only makes sense that on a Christmas album, they’d consider adding some songs that would be fun for the whole family to enjoy. There’s a lot that they could do with this one to make it a fun, dance along with the kids, type of jam.
Feliz Navidad: This song would be a great addition to the album and adds a little bit of diversity. We know that the boys have been known to take some of their classic songs and record them in other languages (Anywhere For You in Spanish (Donde Quieres Yo Iré), Quit Playin’ Games in Italian (Non puoi lasciarmi così), and I’ll Never Break Your Heart in Spanish (Nunca te Haré Llorar). Of course this song is not entirely in Spanish, but it does add a little variety to the set list, and would give Howie some guaranteed lead vocal time.
Oh, Holy Night: This has long been considered one of the most beautiful Christmas songs of all time. It lends itself gloriously to full harmonies. N*Sync did this acapella on their Christmas album, so it is not likely our boys will do the same, but lucky for us, this song can be orchestrated in many different ways and still have a wondrous impact. Even 98* sang this on their Christmas album, so it seems to be a boyband favorite. You can bet that even if this song does not make it to the final album, it will absolutely be considered in pre-production.
This Christmas: Let’s be real…most of the Backstreet Boys biggest songs are about relationships (good, bad, ugly) with others. It only makes sense that they’d include a song, even on the Christmas album, that is centered around relationships as well. This song is about enjoying Christmas with the people you love and it emulates the way the boys likely feel about spending Christmas with their own families. It’s a feel-good family-oriented song that the boys can really get behind given their own love of their families.
Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas: This classic is up there as one of the most recorded Christmas songs as well. It screams nostalgia and brings the warm and fuzzy feelings of a peaceful Christmas with loved ones. This is a great song for the boys to showcase their harmonies and it would be even better if they did this one acapella to really show off their chops. When you consider the message of the song, this one seems like a great way to end the album. Just the line “Someday soon we all will be together, if the fates allow” seems like a great wish and send off for the future of the fandom and our connection to the boys. And we certainly wish for that too.
Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree: This one is just a fun, classic, light-hearted song that lends itself to family entertainment. Although it might seem a little too simple, the boys have a knack for adding a little edge and making things their own. This would give them an opportunity to revamp and reimagine a classic but retain the feel of a hearty family Christmas anthem.
The Christmas Song: This is THE Christmas song. It says it in the title. Need we say more? Well, we will. Not only is it one of the most recorded Christmas songs of all time, but Boyz II Men also included it on their Christmas album, (and we all know BSB’s roots were greatly influenced by them). This song has a jazzy feel to which the boys could do justice and it’s a standard of the holiday season.
Wouldn’t it be nice?
It’s Christmas Time Again: This was their last Christmas release in 2012 right after Kevin returned to the group. This is arguably their most popular Christmas track and their go-to when singing in Christmas performances. Wouldn’t it be nice to finally have it tied to a full Christmas album?
Christmas Time: This was the original Backstreet Boys Christmas song initially released as a B track on the Christmas Edition of the Quit Playin’ Games with my Heart single in 1996 and then re-released on a Christmas compilation album put out by Jive records in 2000. Although this is old-school Backstreet, wouldn’t it be nice if they re-recorded and re-imagined this one for this new album? It was the original Backstreet Christmas after all and we love hearing their current voices on these older, classic tracks! Seriously, who wouldn’t want to hear AJ re-record that “re-YOOOOUUUU-nited” line? And with some rearranging, Howie and Kevin could take some leads! Maybe they’ll add it as a bonus track.
Hallelujah: Ok, so this isn’t a traditional Christmas classic (yet), but how amazing would the boys sound on this acapella? We don’t think it’ll make the album, but we would love to hear them pull out all the stops for this one! It has been recorded quite a bit lately and the market seems to be oversaturated with covers of it, so the boys will likely steer clear of this one. But we could totally see Brian throwing this one in the ring.
Winter Wonderland: The Backstreet Boys did an acoustic performance on this song a few years back with the acapella group Pentatonix during their Christmas TV special and it was angelic. Although we would love to hear them flesh out those harmonies on this song with just the boys, we realize it is unlikely. This collaboration was a special feature, and with all the Christmas repertoire at their disposal, it’s hard to imagine they would recycle a song that already has notoriety. A girl can hope though!
Whether we hit the nail on the head or are completely off track, our predictions are based off what we as fans know to be true about the boys and their track record. No matter what ends up on the album, we can rest easy knowing that the songs will be chosen to showcase the boys’ talent and provide us fans with the best Christmas experience we can get from an album. How exciting to think we are FINALLY getting what we have been promised for years.
Now we just have to be a little more patient and hope that Backstreet time does not strike again! We are cautiously optimistic, but don’t go breaking our hearts boys!