Local Current Blog

Friday Five: Classic holiday music videos from Minnesota artists

With the entire state snuggled up under a fresh blanket of snow, there’s no better time to curl up for a holiday at home and enjoy some of the best holiday videos Minnesotan’s have to offer. Bundle up, sit back, and happy holidays!

New Power Generation – “Christmas Party!”

Longtime Prince backing band New Power Generation have created a charming virtual Christmas card for the holiday, complete with videos of the band and dancing and grooving from home. Instilled with lots of earnest joy and positivity, this video is the perfect accompaniment to your season’s greetings for all the funk fans in your life.

Bob Dylan – “Must Be Santa”

Few artists have created music under a set of rules all their own in the way Bob Dylan has across lengthy career. Included in that set of rules meant abstaining from releasing a holiday album until 50 years into his career with 2009’s often zany and uncharacteristically bright Christmas in the Heart. In Louie Kemp’s book about his lifelong friendship with Dylan, he explains that the inspiration for the “Must Be Santa” music video may have come from Dylan’s college days living in a Jewish fraternity in Dinkytown and playing the part of Santa in a rowdy holiday skit.

Ondara – “Mother Christmas”

In the midst of the sugar rush and snow globe scenes, holidays also bring forward feelings of loneliness and loss for many. Ondara encapsulates that feeling in his tender song “Mother Christmas.” Music fans and critics alike have come to appreciate Ondara’s unique, raw approach to Americana music over the past few years but might not know that this is the song that the artist formally launched his career with back in 2017.

The New Standards – 2017 Holiday Show

It just couldn’t feel like a complete Minnesota holiday list without The New Standards, the jazz trio whose annual holiday show has become a local staple over the years. Complete with a stage full of musicians and a rotating cast of collaborators, this complete recording of their 2014 show is a cozy substitute for the in person thing. If you’re still craving more holiday fun from New Standards don’t worry, they’ve released a live album this year in place of their usual show.

Low – “Santa’s Coming Over”

Immersed in an eerie 2008 glow, Low‘s “Santa’s Coming Over” turns the subject of many children’s daydreams into the stuff of nightmares. If you’re not in the mood to toss on this spooky tune to soundtrack your cookie decorating, the Duluth-based indie rock veterans have an entire album of more typical holiday tunes.

Send your best Minnesota music videos my way at FridayFive [at] mpr.org.