Every year a batch of new artists tries to record the ultimate holiday album and thus guarantee that they'll be a part of the season for years to come. This year sees new albums from some old standbys (Richard Marx, Olivia Newton-John) along with a couple of new compilations.
• A Very Special Christmas - 25 Years Since 1987, the A Very Special Christmas holiday music series has been raising money for the Special Olympics. For their 25th anniversary, the compilation includes Jason Mraz, Cheap Trick, Jewel and more.
• Blake Shelton - Cheers, it's Christmas. If you like your holidays a little more country, Blake Shelton may be your man. The album includes duets with Michael Buble, Reba and Shelton's mother, Dorothy Shackleford.
• Richard Marx - Christmas Spirit While he's been out of the spotlight as a solo artist, Marx has been writing hits for other artists. Now he's back behind the microphone with a Christmas album.
• Rod Stewart - Merry Christmas, Baby Following up on a few collections of standards, Stewart's out with a collection of holiday classics.
• Cee Lo's Magic Moment The second judge from The Voice with a holiday album, Ceelo delivers soulful renditions of classics. He's joined by some interesting guest vocalists too - including The Muppets and Christina Aguilera.
• Olivia Newton-John & John Travolta - This Christmas They were the one that you wanted back in the 1980s and now ONJ and John Travolta want to become part of your holiday tradition.
• Holidays Rule With appearances by The Shins, Rufus Wainwright and The Head And The Heart, this album may as well be called Alterna-Christmas.
• Sufjan Stevens - Silver and Gold Leave it to the quirky Mr. Stevens to release not one holiday album but five, as is the case with this box set.
• Beegie Adair & Friends - Christmas & Cocktails As the album title suggests, Adair's holiday album is a smooth jazz-ish ode to Christmas - a perfect backdrop for a cocktail party.
(Images: As credited above.)