Presented by: Miller Lite
Christmas means many things to many people. For some, it’s a chance to open gifts and spend time with loved ones, and for others, it’s game day — especially with five marquee NBA matchups and an NFL contest going on. A much-needed break from family is extremely understandable, so whether that involves sneaking a kiss under the mistletoe or cheering for your favorite basketball team, there’s a song for each occasion. From Mariah Carey to Quad City DJ’s, there’s an anthem for whichever occasion you’re really celebrating on December 25.
Listen below to some of the songs that will become your Christmas Day (or game day) traditions.
“Swish Swish” — Katy Perry
While we all know this was Katy Perry’s clap-back to Taylor Swift’s “Bad Blood,” the basketball-themed song and video (along with the title) didn’t go over our heads. It’s become equal parts sports-themed and vengeful — but either way, it’s a great bop.
“All I Want For Christmas Is You” — Mariah Carey
Is it really Christmas if “All I Want For Christmas Is You” isn’t on a playlist? Mariah Carey would probably agree. This pop gem filled with holiday glee is something the whole family can at least talk about because likely everyone has heard it (many times) before.
“Space Jam” — Quad City DJ’s
Arguably, the most memorable basketball-themed film of the ‘90s was Space Jam, and truth be told, Quad City DJ’s and their Miami groove will get you to dance before Christmas dinner.
“Snowman” — Sia
There’s nothing like Sia’s soaring vocals to get you into the holiday spirit. While the Australian singer-songwriter takes a break from her infectious pop hits and collaborations, she delivers a solid reminder that she can still create a slow jam (even if it’s for a holiday).
“Winner” — Jamie Foxx ft. Justin Timberlake and T.I.
“Winner” was not just the trifecta of collaborations, it later became the official theme song of the 2010 NBA playoffs. The anthemic track will get you hyped for the game no matter who’s playing.
“Santa Baby” — Ariana Grande ft. Liz Gillies
If you need a break from the family and a moment alone with your baby, “Santa Baby” is the perfect song to listen to underneath the mistletoe. If we didn’t know any better, we’d say that Ariana practically invented “Santa Baby.”
“Make Em Say UGH!” Master P
Twenty years ago, Master P released what would be his highest-charting single, which would later be heard at a slew of basketball games. With help from Fiend, Silkk The Shocker, Mia X & Mystikal, Master P’s anthemic hit has lived on as a cathartic, gold-tank-rolling track.
“Jam” — Michael Jackson
While it wasn’t one of his biggest singles, Michael Jackson did recruit one of the world’s biggest basketball stars, Michael Jordan, to be in the video. In it, Jackson gave Jordan dance lessons, while Jordan showed Jackson how to play basketball. Later the song was even used in a 1992 NBA Championship video.
“You Make It Feel Like Christmas” — Gwen Stefani ft. Blake Shelton
A country collaboration between Gwen Stefani and Blake Shelton isn’t necessarily what anyone would have expected coming from pop stalwart Stefani, but we’ve seen stranger things happen. “You Make It Feel Like Christmas” flaunts Stefani’s (new) Southern twang and the sound of sleigh bells. It might just be the perfect song to open presents to on Christmas Day.
“That’s How I Beat Shaq” — Aaron Carter
Gone are the days that Aaron Carter put out rap tracks as a kid, but his best ones will live on forever. “That’s How I Beat Shaq” is a song entirely dedicated to playing on the court and beating one of the greatest basketball players of all time: Shaquille O’Neal. We have a feeling this classic comes with good luck.