EXCLUSIVE: All Star Christmas Traditions

With Christmas fast approaching we are all starting to get into the festive spirit and each and every family has their own special tradition for celebrating the holidays. Whether it be by opening presents on Christmas Eve, skiing on Christmas Day, or watching festive movies in the run-up to the day everybody has a unique way of celebrating.

Here we speak to a number of our favourite artists from the likes of Carly Pearce and Jesse Terry to Ryan Hurd to find out exactly what their favourite Christmas tradition is:

Russell Dickerson – US Country/Pop Star

“My favorite holiday tradition as of late has been hunting! Getting out in the woods where there’s no hum of a tour bus generator or sound of a concert. Just sitting in the peace and quiet of nature is one of my favorite things in the world. Also cheesy Christmas movies with my wife haha!” 

Jade Helliwell – British Country Singer

“My favourite part of Christmas is giving gifts. I love to see people’s reactions. Aside from that, I love the food and drinks (Snowballs are a Christmas must have!) I have a few traditions I love. One is with my friends. We have a day out in Manchester in Christmas Jumpers .My mum and I have a tradition of buying each other PJ’s for Christmas Eve (Gotta look your best for Santa). Finally, my family have a tradition of giving a gifts around the table after Dinner. Overall, I love spending time with my family and friends over Christmas”.   

D.A.N – Irish singer/songwriter

“I fly back home to Ireland from London usually a few days before Christmas, and as soon as I get home I head straight for the piano. It’s an old upright one I’ve played since I was a child and I usually play some of my favourite classical pieces and then try and write some new songs (all before getting told to be quiet by my sisters – tis the season!)” 

Louis Centioni – Brit School alumni

“Every year I go ice-skating with my sister, and I absolutely love to bake mince pies & cookies. Making wreaths to decorate the house and Christmas tree shopping is a big deal in my house! We always have a real tree so finding the perfect one is always a crucial task every year.” 

Carly Pearce- US Country star

“My favorite Christmas tradition is cooking with my mom. My grandmother passed away when I was a teen, but left my mom and I a handwritten recipe book with tons of recipes. We honor her by cooking together every year“.

Polo – Alt- Pop trio

Luke

“All my home friends live in London now, but we still keep up our Christmas tradition, which is now in it’s 10th year. We meet at a terrible Samuel smiths pub in the terrible town where we all went to school, and share stories about the year we have had. When it’s pretty late, I walk the two miles back in the pitch black back to my parents house down a country lane alone, and contemplate my year in the freezing cold on the walk home”.   

Kat

“I think I may have broke the curse this year with naff jobs but usually throughout uni and beyond I’ve always got a soul destroying retail job, worked till stupid hours in a giant freezer and then gone out ready for the midnight celebration, got a £60 Uber home even though it’s only 5 miles because of the serge charge and then woke up about 10 to my little brother sat on my bed stating that he’s been waiting for hours. Then go downstairs in my dressing gown and open some glittery pink eye shadow from my Auntie Sue“.

Dan

“On Christmas Day after the roast dinner I religiously sneak out for a smoke and avoid the glare of my grandparents, my aunt (a non-smoker) sneaks out just after me and we enjoy a cigarette together in the cold. I’m pretty certain her husband has never found out about it, and as a teenager it used to feel so mischievous! 5 years on and we still do it” 

Polo

“Not a tradition as much, be we certainly make sure to go on a big night before Christmas, usually the week before. We make sure not to mention the band, and for probably the only night of the year we enjoy each others company without having to discuss songs, planning, press or anything else. It resets the clocks and reminds us that underneath everything, we’re great friends”. 

Matilda Eyre – Indie Electro singer/producer

“Christmas is my favourite time of the year. Whenever there is just a glimpse of gingerbread on the horizon, I can’t wait to make my way back to Germany. It’s just the best place to be in this cosy season; filled with Christmas markets, mulled wine, family and friends. It’s the time to unwind, go on long walks with my dog and sit at my piano (the piano I got from my grandmother) and play for hours. From advent calendars (YES!) to St. Nicholas on 6th December, you will find me carol singing and mulled wine sipping throughout. The most important day, however, is Christmas Eve where we come together with close family and have a grant Raclette dinner, it is tradition. The next few days are spent visiting family and indulging in more delicious food. I love making this festive season a very special time”.   

Ryan Hurd – US Singer/Songwriter

“Maren [Morris, Ryan’s Wife] and I for the last two years have this thing where we both have to watch ten Christmas movies. We always have to watch Elf first. So this year, we’ve watched Elf, and we’ve watched Home Alone. Home Alone, to me, is the best Christmas movie, ever. Actually, Home Alone 1 and 2 are great…the sequel is actually better. Home Alone 2 is amazing as far as sequels go. I love Christmas with Maren. We get a really big tree from a local high school and we have lights all over our kitchen. We’re a bit of the “Griswolds” on our block. We enjoy this time of year and having everybody over to celebrate the season”.  

Kerri Watt – British singer/songwriter

“Every second year my family spend Christmas in California where I used to live and on Christmas morning we all wake up super early, make bagels and coffee and take our stockings down to the beach to open while the sun rises – still in our PJ’s!”. 

Ali Caldwell – The Voice Season 11 star

“My favorite traditions around Christmas are wearing onesies on Christmas Eve, playing games, eating foods I probably shouldn’t be eating, and just being surrounded by family. And of course opening presents on Christmas Day. There’s just something about being around family during this Holiday minus the eggnog, I can definitely do without that! Who created that?…lol..ughhhh.” 

Lula Miranda – Argentinian Artist 

“Something different about spending Christmas in Argentina is that it’s in Summer time. I think warm weather makes our Christmas very cheerful. An ordinary Christmas Eve is spent with all my family, grandparents, uncles and aunts, cousins, and sometimes very close friends of our family. Our night starts by having dinner at around 9pm. The most traditional plate that can’t ever be missing on our Christmas table is vitel tone, which is originally Italian, but very popular in my country. All dishes are served in cold temperature, chicken and pork mixed with all types of salads. Kids stay up until 12 o’clock waiting to open up their gifts and adults make a long toast. We hand out all the gifts, open them up and celebration continues with music and drinks until dawn.” 

Betta Lemme – Rising star

“The one tradition I do secretly every year is look around the room and study my family members. I try to capture every detail, smile, characteristic while they’re all in one room. We never know what tomorrow will bring so being together under the same roof is something I always cherish. Also listening to David Bowie Christmas songs while ricocheting back and fourth from an existential crisis because those warm fuzzy moments of Christmas seem to be so fleeting nowadays (if they even decide to show up this time). puts on morrisey“.

Payson Lewis – Singer

“My absolute favorite moment of Christmas comes just a little after dinner. It’s the calm after the storm; the whole family is gathered in the living room, our feet warming by a fire, and all the presents and fragments of wrapping paper are scattered about in every nook and cranny. It’s in that moment that we all just get to share in our familial love and the mutual love of my Step-Mom Susie’s famous chocolate fudge sauce poured over a nice scoop of vanilla ice cream. I can taste it already!”

Anja Kotar – Slovenian singer 

“Because my family is originally from a small European country of Slovenia, but now we live in Silicon Valley, a lot of our holiday traditions are a mix of the two cultures. Every year, me and my mom bake together: we always make the traditional Slovenian “potica” (think of it as a walnut and raisin roll pastry), then we move on to making the traditional American gingerbread cookies”. 

Runrummer – Alt pop artist

“Christmas at the Runrummer household is always a good one. Rocking around the Christmas tree and the kitchen in style. My Mum busts out the moves while my Dad supplies the booze. On Christmas Eve we always go for a good knees up with my cousins, then Christmas Day is all about the food and a good winter walk!  When it comes to music I’m a sucker for the oldies. My top three tunes have to be The Christmas Song by Nat King Cole, I’ll Be Home For Christmas by Bing Crosby and Wonderful Christmastime by Paul McCartney”. 

Kyan – Artist

“Christmas is the one time of year where it doesn’t matter if you can sing in tune or not. Everyone has a favourite Christmas song and they aren’t afraid to belt it at the top of their lungs…As the singer who’s usually drafted in at every opportunity to provide free entertainment for my friends and family, it’s a nice little break! There’s something really special about people coming together over that shared love of something familiar and nostalgic; as terribly out of tune as it often is, it’s a beautiful sound.” 

Jesse Terry – Folk artist

“I have my favourite Christmas traditions from my childhood that I’ll always treasure and remember. But this year is different; my wife and I had our first child in August, a little girl named Lily Grace. So the most exciting thing about this holiday season is starting brand new Christmas traditions for Lily! We also rescued a yellow lab mix named Harrison this year, so it will be his first Christmas with us too (bacon under the tree?). My wife Jess and I just put up our first proper tree of adulthood to celebrate this special season and we’re shopping for lots of ornaments soon. And I just played my last show of 2018, so the rest of the year is going to be dedicated to discovering new Christmas traditions with Lily, Jess and Harrison. We’re looking forward to going down to the tree lighting in our town soon and doing the holiday stroll. We live by the ocean here in New England, so it’s a beautiful place to experience the holidays. And of course, everyone here is dreaming of a white Christmas!”

Jordan Higo – English singer

“I LOVE CHRISTMAS! Christmas always make me realise how lucky I am to have such a happy & healthy family. There are three pillars that support Christmas in my world… Eating as much good food with as many good people as possible. Doing anything & everything possible to win the annual family ‘Cludo’ contest! Singing Christmas songs until I start to annoy myself. Some of my fave Christmas songs are…
Band Aid – 1984
Wham! – Last Christmas
Chris Rea – Driving Home For Christmas
Blue Christmas – Elvis Presley

Mollie Coday – Texan singer/songwriter 

“The Christmas season is my favorite time of year for more reasons than one, but it’s the traditions that mean so much to me. One of my favorite Christmas traditions is opening presents as a family on Christmas Eve and having tamales as our Christmas Eve dinner. Not only that, but throughout the holiday season my mom and I binge watch Hallmark Christmas movies; Christmas wouldn’t be the same without them! Truly though, the best part is the joy of being with family”. 

JetStream – Band

“When the JetStream band get a tiny bit of down time at Christmas we spend it back in Gibraltar with friends and family. There’s an annual tradition where local musicians young and old turn up guitar in hand on Christmas Eve for a sing song in a tiny pub which goes on into the wee small hours. Ever heard Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer with 5 part vocal harmonies? That’s how we roll!
On Boxing Day everyone heads down to the beach for a winter dip in the sea too! Its known as the Polar Bear swim! It’s mad but it’s fun. It never snows in Gibraltar so there’s never a White Christmas…. but we do LOVE the food, the wine and the festivities”  

Liv Austen – London based, Norwegian Country singer

“This might be the most Norwegian answer I’ve ever given, but my favourite thing to do at Christmas is to go cross country skiing. There’s something really special about cross country, you’re always moving so you get really warm even if it’s freezing cold around you. You get amazing views either side of the tracks that you can admire as you glide past. I try to go skiing on Christmas Eve if I can, early in the day – when everything is totally quiet and serene around you, it’s as if the world has stopped for a second, and I get to hold on to that Christmas feeling for a bit longer. It’s very meditative”. 

O&O -Country duo

“Every Christmas we take time off from our busy schedule in London to spend the holiday with Obadiah’s family in his hometown of Aspen, Colorado. The Rocky Mountains are beautiful in the winter and we get a proper white Christmas every year. We enjoy walking the family dogs, decorating the tree and we usually do a homecoming show, which is always a joyful reunion with old friends and family!”

What is your favourite Christmas tradition? Let us know over on Twitter @CelebMix

Written by Laura Klonowski

Qualified music journalist! Writing single/album/live reviews, feature articles, interviews, and news pieces.
Portfolio: lauraklonowski.com
Twitter: @cherylssoldier1
Instagram: @musicandtournews
Email: [email protected]