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My Eclectic Holiday Playlist: Christmas Music You Can Stream from the Hoboken Public Library

18 Dec

It can seem a little decadent to purchase holiday CDs to listen to for just one month a year, so I prefer to stream my favorite Christmas tunes.  Hoboken Public Library residents have access to streaming music from Hoopla and Freegal.  Both services have tons of albums and songs to choose from such as Merry Christmas from Mariah Carey or if you prefer A Jolly Christmas From Frank Sinatra.  I have some quirky favorites I’m sharing below that put an unusual spin on the holiday classics.

Lindsey Stirling’s Warmer in the Winter
Warmer in the Winter
Warmer in the Winter is one of my favorite Christmas albums.  Lindsey Stirling rose to fame with her riveting music videos where she energetically dances while playing the violin.  With the violin being one of my favorite stringed instruments, I love her version of the Dance of the Sugar Plum and fun take on You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch.  Some tracks have guest vocalists; Warmer in the Winter is the cheerful title tune that will have you wanting to sing along.  Another bouncy upbeat Christmas favorite of mine is Gwen Stefani’s You Make it Feel Christmas.

Blackmore’s Night’s Winter Carols
Winter Carols

Blackmore’s Night is a traditional rock folk duo inspired by renaissance music, featuring Ritchie Blackmore (from metal bands Deep Purple and Rainbow) and Candice Night, who adds beautiful vocals.  Since I’m a fan of renaissance inspired music, Winter Carols is another favorite. I especially like their version of I Saw Three Ships.  If you enjoy this one also check out Mediaeval Baebes’s Mistletoe & Wine and Loreena McKennitt’s A Midwinter’s Night Dream for more traditional inspired carols, which I also love.

Christmas with the Puppini Sisters
Puppini Sisters Christmas

For a retro sounding Christmas going a little less far back in time, stream Christmas with the Puppini Sisters.  The other two members are not actually related to Marcella Puppini instead their name was inspired by the Andrews Sisters.  All of the Puppini Sisters albums are worth checking out, but I especially can’t resist their fun take on Christmas classics during the holiday season.  I particularly like their take on Here Comes Santa Claus and Winter Wonderland.  They also have a fun version of Mele Kalikimaka, for another great cover of the classic Hawaiian Christmas song check out the one from duo She & Him’s Christmas Party.

Ornamental (A Projekt Holiday Compilation)

Projekt Records was known in the 90’s for its Ethereal Gothic music including the founder Sam Rosenthal’s Black Tape for a Blue Girl.  Being a fan of many of the artist on the label this in another favorite that might appeal to those who don’t like the traditional pop sound of a lot of Christmas classics.  It includes great tracks by Nicki Jaine, Jill Tracy, Ego Likeness, Love Spirals Downward, and for Steampunk fan’s Abney Park with Steampunk Jingle Bells.  Some of the artists on the compilation also have their own holiday albums so you can also check out Spellbound in Winter by Unto Ashes.

Pokémon Christmas Bash
pokemon christmas

This is a favorite of my son who is Pokémon crazed.  It features silly Pokémon holiday inspired tunes like I’m Giving Santa a Pickachu for Christmas and Pokémon Christmas Bash.  It won’t blow you away with its vocals and music, but for Pokémon fans it is a fun background if Santa is bringing the new Sword and Shield Games.  If you like a little humor with your Christmas celebrations also check out Shonen Knife’s celebration of all things scrumptious with their Sweet Christmas.

With Hoopla you can borrow up to 10 albums of music per month (or books and movies).  Freegal lets you stream three hours of music per day and if you find a must have song you can download 5 songs per week that are yours to keep.  Freegal even creates holiday playlists if you like your Christmas Rockin’ or you prefer a Country Christmas.  For those celebrating Hanukkah this month, you can check out a variety of albums available on Hoopla.  Prefer to listen to music on CD; come in and browse our holiday collection in the first floor media room near the fireplace at the main branch!

No matter what holiday you typically celebrate this time of year, if you are Seinfeld fan, stop in for our Festivus for the Rest of Us celebration on December 19 at 7 PM!

Looking to give the gift of reading this holiday season; check out these great reads for kids, adults and teens recommended by the BCCLS Staff.  You can find out our staff’s holiday favorites from a previous post.  Also check out a post about recommended Christmas movies.

Written by:
Aimee Harris
Head of Reference

Gotta Catch’em All: Check Out these items at the Hoboken Public Library for Pokémon Trainers

13 Jul

If you are out catching Pokémon at the Poké Stop in Church Square Park and need to get a break from the heat we hope you stop in to cool off at our library across the street. There is a water fountain on the second floor for those needing a quick drink, a charging station for your phone or tablet, and we have a variety of fun Pokémon related videos, books, and more for you to check out if you can’t get enough Pokémon.  If you aren’t familiar with 90’s franchise that spawned the Pokémon Go phenomena, this will give you the opportunity to learn the difference between a Charmander and a Clefairy.

Pokémon Cartoon Series

When I was in graduate school my roommate (a fan of a Jigglypuff) and I always giggled about the fact that instead of going out to the clubs Friday evenings we sometimes enjoyed nothing more than getting a pint of fresh made ice cream from the store up the block and watching the adventures of Ash, Misty, and Brock and other Pokémon trainers.  I’m having fun introducing my son to the cartoon series.  We have a variety of DVDs to choose from including The Johto Journeys, Adventures in Orange Islands, and many more.  Plus for those who have a favorite type check out the Pokémon Elements series with volumes concentrating on episodes highlighting everything from Grass types, Electric types, and my personal favorites the Ghost types.  Plus you can check out movies like Hoopa and the Clash of Ages and Genesect and the Legend Awakened.

Pokémon Games

My son and husband have been having a lot of fun playing Pokémon Go in the parks near our home (Go Team Instinct!), but if it is a rainy day and you don’t feel like leaving the house we have some fun Pokémon games for those with Wiis or Wii Us, you can borrow here at the library including PokéPark 2, Wonders Beyond for the Wii, Pokken Tournament for the Wii U, and Pokémon Battle Revolution for Wii.

Pokémon Books

The Hoboken Public Library has Pokémon XY by Hidenori Kusaka; the graphic novels tells the story of a shy but talented young prodigy and Legendary Pokémon Xerneas and Yveltal.  We also have his Pokémon Adventures. Black & White and Pokémon Adventures. Emerald for you to check out.  Plus you can borrow from various other BCCLS libraries various editions of Pokedexes (a listing of Pokémons and their abilities) from Pokémon Omega Ruby, Pokémon Alpha Sapphire: The official national Pokédex to Pokédex all 482+8 Pokémon & Post-Story Guide.  If you are a Hoboken resident, you can request the books be sent to you through interlibrary loan to the Hoboken Public Library, though many libraries are Poke Stops and Gyms so it may be the perfect opportunity to take a trip around North Jersey and see what all the terrific BCCLS libraries have to offer in person.

Pokémon Music

pokemon 2ba
If you are looking for some fun music to listen to while searching for Pokémon than check out the choices you have from Hoopla including the soundtrack to the first film Pokémon The Movie, Pokémon – 2.B.A. Master – Music From The Hit Tv Series, and Pokémon – Totally Pokémon – Music From The Hit Tv SeriesPlus for when Christmas time comes around, who can resist Pokémon Christmas Bash featuring the song “I’m Giving Santa a Pickachu This Christmas”? There is even a Karaoke version on the album!

Let us know your favorite Pokémon in the comments section and happy hunting!

-Written by Aimee Harris, Head of Reference

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