Christmas Music: Pop Stars

Most pop-stars will put out a Christmas album, or at least single, at some point in their career. And most of those are horrible. Just because you're singing a Christmas song doesn't mean it sounds like a Christmas song. When it comes to contemporary artists attempting Christmas music, there needs to be the perfect balance of their musical style and what we consider traditional Christmas music style.
While browsing the iTunes store for Christmas music, I found a lot of Christmas albums by our favorite 90's pop stars. N*SYNC, Destiny's Child, 98*, and Mariah Carey have all put out Christmas albums. However, they're really just their same style of pop music with familiar Christmas melodies and lyrics. Jingle Bells doesn't need a phat beat, it needs jingle bells.
Luckily, I found some Christmas albums from some well known pop artists that have managed to bring their musical style to my favorite Christmas classics, jingle bells and all.

Taylor Swift
This girl is as close to country music I'll get. She brings her unique pop-tinged-with-country-twang style to Christmas songs on her 6 song EP. While none of her Christmas covers are my favorite version of the song, I do enjoy hearing her twist on a Christmas classic when it comes up in my Christmas playlist.

Aly & AJ
Before you start mocking me for including Disney stars in any music list... Actually, go ahead. There's nothing to defend these girls against the Disney stereotype. They're blonde and cute and make delightful pop music. You've got to give them some credit, though. They've managed to put out a pop music Christmas album that actually sounds like Christmas, not just a pop album. Even better- the songs are mainly acoustic (or at least feature an acoustic guitar), hence the lovely album title; Acoustic Hearts of Winter.

NOW! Christmas 3
Uh oh, another music faux-pas. Collection albums. There are several artists on here that I'm not a fan of, and some I've never even heard of, but it also contains a few gems. Joss Stone, KT Tunstall, Serena Ryder, Colbie Callait and Jewel all have songs on this album. And they all sound like Christmas songs, not just pop songs.

Whether you watch the show or not, you've probably heard a few Glee songs in your time. Some of their covers are just okay, but once in a while they do something really amazing. (I know you all heard and loved the Rumor Has It/Someone Like You mash-up.) I loved the Glee Christmas album last year, and this year's album has even more amazing Christmas songs. They cover all the classics as well as a few new songs that you'll love. From fun and dancey to beautiful classics, Glee's got your Christmas music covered.

Sarah McLachlan
She's not what we'd call a "pop star" but she is quite popular. Sarah McLachlan has one of those unique voices and musical styles that you just know will work well with Christmas music.

Note: All of these albums can be found in the iTunes store.
Another Note: I'm not trying to promote iTunes. I just find it the easiest way to browse for music and
then purchase, if you're so inclined. Or in my case, if you can't find it elsewhere for free. ;)