Five new holiday songs you should already be listening to

These five tracks could be soon-to-be classics.
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"All I Want for Christmas is You" - Philly Specials

If classical tomfoolery is not your thing, maybe you’d prefer a simple plain classic – with the attraction of being sung by one of the largest men on the planet.

Members of the Philadelphia Eagles recorded a Christmas album last year, and people seemed to like it enough for them to get together again this year for an encore. The main drivers are offensive linemen Jason Kelce (yes – brother of Travis, who music fans may know for other reasons), Lane Johnson, and Jordan Mailata. And most of the album is exactly what albums of this nature are usually like. It’s perfectly OK, provided you accept the fact that these guys aren’t real singers. In other words, it’s a decent amateur album with a good gimmick.

Except, in the middle of it all is this truly outstanding performance by Mailata on one of the chestnuts. Mailata is a former rugby player. The Eagles were intrigued enough by his massive frame – 6’7”, 365 lbs – that they gave him an audition. In a few short years, he has turned into on the best left tackles in game (an 83.6 rating on Pro Football Focus, if that means anything to you.) And he has an excellent tenor that knocks this one out of the park - please excuse the mixed sports metaphor here.

It’s also a pretty good rocking arrangement, with horns and piano driving things forward, and his Eagle teammates providing adequate backup. Mailata can also play guitar, and when his playing days are done, I expect he will have a second career in music.