With December 25 just a day away and Christmas music dominating the radio, there’s one song that never fails to put me in the holiday spirit: “Sleigh Ride.” From the original orchestral arrangement to recent pop covers, “Sleigh Ride” has been done in many different ways, and yet each rendition brings something new and fun to the wonderful classic. Here are some of the best ones.
1) Sleigh Ride – Boston Pops Orchestra arr. Leroy Anderson
Is it weird to call the original orchestral arrangement of “Sleigh Ride” a bop? The percussion in this piece really makes you feel like you’re dashing through the snow, from faint jingle bells to the signature horse clop-clop and whip. And that wild one part towards the end where the brass goes super hard and just breaks it down? Iconic.
2) Sleigh Ride – The Ronettes
3) Sleigh Ride – Ella Fitzgerald
This version is lovely, though I kind of want to just listen to it sitting by the fireplace with a nice cup of mulled wine rather than going for a sleigh ride.
4) Sleigh Ride – fun.
Weaving original violin and flute parts throughout the song, Fun. transforms the orchestral piece into a pop version that’s light and, well, fun.
5) Sleigh Ride – Relient K
Relient K’s “Sleigh Ride” starts softly and slowly, with a lone vocalist and gentle piano—it’s conversational, like you’re looking outside at the snow, and thinking that going for a sleigh ride could be a nice idea. Then the tempo picks up and suddenly this is a rock song and you’re definitely out in the snow and on a sleigh ride now.
6) Sleigh Ride – Pentatonix
How five voices manage to do all this never fails to amaze me???
7) Sleigh Ride – Spice Girls
If you wanna be my lover, you gotta take me on a sleigh ride (feat. a nice sax solo in the middle).
8) Sleigh Ride – Miley Cyrus
Did Miley throw a “yee-haw” into her Spotify recording of Sleigh Ride? Of course she did.
Image Credits: Photo: Daniel Varghese