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Falvey’s Guide To Christmas Pop

By Olivia Dunn

With Christmastime approaching, it’s time to start listening and appreciating the season before it passes you by. Rather than opting for the classics such as “Jingle Bells” or “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer” at every chance you get (although there’s nothing wrong with that), consider checking out the multitude of pop music various stars have offered over the years with the convenient broken-down guide provided below. Happy Holidays!


These pop hits have stood the test of time and are just as likely to be heard on the radio as any other Christmas carol. Out of all the classics, these three are the best of the best.

“All I Want for Christmas is You” by Mariah Carey – Say what you want about this song, as it has gained a reputation for being overhyped, but it’s simply not Christmas without at least a few (or hundreds of) listens.

“Last Christmas” by Wham! – This song is the perfect choice for those who could do without the same cheery tone of most Christmas songs.

“Mistletoe” by Justin Bieber – Upon its release in 2011, this song easily became a staple for both middle school girls and non-Justin Bieber listeners alike.


While these songs often get overshadowed by their more-famous counterparts, they are just as deserving of multiple listens throughout the holiday season.

“Cold December Night” by Michael Bublé – While Michael Bublé has become known for other famous tracks off his beloved holiday album simply entitled Christmas, “Cold December Night” deserves fame in its own right.

“Christmas Eve” by Justin Bieber – One of the more soulful tracks off of Justin Bieber’s Christmas album, “Christmas Eve” makes for the perfect listen during your family’s Christmas commute.

“Underneath the Tree” by Kelly Clarkson – Once you hear this song for the first time, you’ll never be able to get it out of your head, and you’ll enjoy every minute of it. 

Worthy Covers:

With a limited amount of Christmas carols in existence, it can be difficult to decipher which covers are the best. Over the years, these three have remained tried and true staples.

“It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas” by Michael Bublé – While it was hard to choose just one cover from Michael Bublé, this song sums up the simultaneous anticipation and nostalgia associated with Christmas perfectly. 

“Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” by Sam Smith – This slowed-down take of a classic Christmas song is a match made in Christmas heaven with Sam Smith’s vocals.

“Winter Wonderland/Don’t Worry Darling” by Pentatonix – Pentatonix gives a fun and unique spin of “Winter Wonderland” by pairing it with Bob Marley’s fan favorite hit, “Don’t Worry Darling.”

View my full holiday playlist below. From all of us at Falvey, we hope you give these picks a listen and have a happy and healthy Holiday season! 

Olivia Dunn HeadshotOlivia Dunn is a senior at Villanova University. She works in Falvey Library as a Communications and Marketing Assistant and majors in Communication with specializations in both Journalism and Public Relations.




Kallie’s Chords: Ballads of the Brokenhearted

Not in the mood for all the residual Valentine’s Day cheerfulness? Monday’s holiday urged us to express our feelings for those in our lives, but sometimes we just need to reflect on our emotions. While upbeat and happy tunes often bring listeners joy, breakup songs tend to be emotionally engaging. “Breakup songs can provide a kind of reverse empathy as you feel for another person going through what you are experiencing. This feeling can help you recognize your own feelings,” says Paul Thagard, PhD.

Each of us celebrated Valentine’s Day differently. If you’re still in a melancholy mood, check out some (or all) of these anthems below. As Ethan noted in this week’s Cat in the Stax, “Crying is a uniquely human experience. Tears are what separate us from the rest of the animal kingdom, which makes crying all the more necessary. A good cry can help us learn things about ourselves that we never could have known otherwise.”

Don’t hit the repeat button on these ballads of the brokenhearted too frequently—save them for when you need to shed a few tears.

  1. “What Becomes of the Brokenhearted” by Jimmy Ruffin
  2. “If I Could Write” by Sam Phillips
  3. “I Forgot to Be Your Lover” by William Bell
  4. “Someone Like You” by Adele
  5. “Let It Go” by James Bay
  6. “It’s Too Late” by Carole King
  7. “Tuesday Heartbreak” by Stevie Wonder
  8. “White Flag” by Dido
  9. “I’d Rather Go Blind” by Etta James
  10. “Unbreak My Heart” by Toni Braxton
  11. “I Will Always Love You” by Dolly Parton
  12. “Back to December” by Taylor Swift
  13. “You Haven’t Seen the Last of Me” by Cher
  14. “I Heard It Through The Grapevine” by Marvin Gaye
  15. “When The Party’s Over” by Billie Eilish
  16. “Purple Rain” by Prince
  17. “Ain’t No Sunshine” by Bill Withers
  18. “Don’t Know What You Got (Till It’s Gone)” by Cinderella
  19. “How Can You Mend a Broken Heart” by Al Green
  20. “With or Without You” by U2
  21. “Wrecking Ball” by Miley Cyrus
  22. “The Dumbing Down of Love” by Frou Frou
  23. “Dancing with a Stranger” by Sam Smith and Normani
  24. “The Winner Takes it All” by ABBA
  25. “The Man That Got Away” by Judy Garland
  26. “Misunderstanding” by Genesis

References: Why Do People Like Breakup Songs? | Psychology Today. (n.d.). Retrieved February 11, 2022, from

Kallie Stahl ’17 MA is Communication and Marketing Specialist at Falvey Memorial Library.



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Kallie’s Chords: Mashed Potato Mashup (Part II) Plus Holiday Bonus Hits

Happy Holidays, Wildcats! Enjoy this new mashed potato mashup playlist while studying for finals, traveling home, or just for some relaxing backgrounds tunes. These calm tracks are perfect for any gathering. Looking for more music? Check out the original mashup here.

  • 1) “Where’s My Love” by SYML
  • 2) “Oh My Stars” by Andrew Belle
  • 3) “The Bones” by Maren Morris & Hozier
  • 4) “I Will Not Take My Love Away” by Matt Wertz
  • 5) “Gravity” by Sara Bareilles
  • 6) “Nothing Can Change This Love” by Sam Cooke
  • 7) “Rearview” by Andra Day
  • 8) “Coming Home” by Leon Bridges
  • 9) “Willow” by Taylor Swift
  • 10) “Buckets of Rain” by Bob Dylan
  • 11) “Seven Hours” by Lucy Schwartz & Aqualung
  • 12) “Tip of My Tongue” by Kenny Chesney
  • 13) “Love Is Everywhere I Go” by Sam Phillips
  • 14) “Present Tense” by Pearl Jam
  • 15) “Rhiannon” by Fleetwood Mac
  • 16) “Promise” by Ben Howard
  • 17) “Lost Stars” by Adam Levine
  • 18) “All Is Well” by Austin Basham
  • 19) “Here You Come Again” by Dolly Parton & Willa Amai
  • 20) “She’s Got A Way” by Billy Joel

Bonus playlist: Kallie’s Chords—Merry Everything. Play the holiday hits here.

  • 1) “Run Rudolph Run” by Chuck Berry
  • 2) “Good King Wenceslas” by Jane Lynch, Kate Flannery, Tim Davis & The Tony Guerrero Quintet
  • 3) “O Christmas Tree” by Tony Bennett
  • 4) “Merry Christmas Darling” by The Carpenters
  • 5) “Winter Wonderland” by Kenny G
  • 6) “Hallelujah” by Pentatonix
  • 7) “Winter Song” by Sara Bareilles & Ingrid Michaelson
  • 8) “Do You Hear What I Hear?” by Home Free
  • 9) “Peace on Earth/The Little Drummer Boy” by Bing Crosby & Davie Bowie
  • 10) “Snow” by Leslie Odom Jr.
  • 11) “The Great Pumpkin Waltz” by Vince Guaraldi
  • 12) “Lights On” Tyler, the Creator feat. Ryan Beatty & Santigold
  • 13) “Jingle Bells” by Frank Sinatra
  • 14) “Glow” by Kelly Clarkson & Chris Stapleton
  • 15) “O Come O Come Emmanuel” by The Civil Wars
  • 16) “Frosty the Snowman” by Fiona Apple
  • 17) “Last Christmas” by She & Him
  • 18) “We Three Kings” by Ella Fitzgerald
  • 19) “Little Saint Nick” by Surfaces
  • 20) “Joy to the World” by Whitney Houston & The Georgia Mass Choir

Kallie Stahl ’17 MA is Communication and Marketing Specialist at Falvey Memorial Library.





Fun Friday—Kallie’s Chords: Finals Fuel

By Kallie Stahl

Looking for some study tracks for finals? Check out the latest installment of Kallie’s Chords. This playlist features a mix of mellow and upbeat tracks to keep you focused and energized while writing final papers or reviewing notes for exams. View more playlists here. Good luck on finals, Wildcats!

Kallie Stahl ’17 MA is Communication and Marketing Specialist at Falvey Memorial Library. Gummy bears are her favorite study snack. 





Kallie’s Chords: The Mamas and the Papas

Celebrating Father’s Day, the latest installment of Kallie’s Chords features tracks celebrating the bond between parent and child. Check out the playlist above for father-daughter songs, father-son tunes, and melodies that capture the joys of parenthood. Happy Father’s Day to all the ‘Nova Nation Dads!

Kallie Stahl, MA ’17 CLAS, is communication and marketing specialist at Falvey Memorial Library. Her father ends every text message with the signature “From Dad.”



‘Cat in the Stacks: K&M’s Hi Nrgy Playlist! ♬


 I’m Michelle Callaghan, a second-year graduate student at Villanova University. This is our new column, “‘Cat in the Stacks.” I’m the ‘cat. Falvey Memorial Library is the stacks. I’ll be posting about living that scholarly life, from research to study habits to embracing your inner-geek, and how the library community might aid you in all of it.

You didn’t forget about us, did you? Because Kallie and Michelle are back with our best playlist yet and we’re about to get you pumped for school and pumped for – what else? – basketball!

High energy music is the perfect go-to when everything’s going wrong and you’re tired but you don’t want to chug a Monster… or that cold coffee on your desk. It’s a natural way to put a little more pep in your step and entertain your brain during even the most tedious of tasks. Yes, sometimes you need a chill playlist to calm yourself and focus, but we all have those days where even feeling motivated to move is a Herculean effort. And that’s where those thumping and bumping playlists come in. This one also makes a good pre-game mixtape for the big game!

Warning: the following playlist is exceptionally high energy. Prepare yourself for the knee-bouncing, toe-tapping hypefest you’re about to encounter!

You can find the full playlist on Spotify, but here’s a few of our favorite picks for your convenience:

Full Selection:
“My Legs” – Dragonette
“Henrietta” – The Fratellis
“Little Talks” – Of Monsters and Men
“The Rockafeller Skank” – Fatboy Slim
“It’s My Life” – Bon Jovi
“Babel” – Mumford & Sons
“Girl from Mars” – Ash
“Legal Man” – Belle & Sebastian
“All Over You” – Live
“Walking in Memphis” – Cher
“Smoke” – A Thousand Horses
“Hole in the Sky” – Black Sabbath
“Feel Like a Rock Star” – Kenny Chesney and Tim McGraw
“Happy” – Pharrell Williams
“Nothin’ But a Good Time” – Poison
“Shut Up and Dance” – WALK THE MOON
“Geronimo” – Sheppard
“Headfirst” – Secret Someones
“I Wanna Be Sedated” – Ramones
“Girls Just Wanna Have Fun” – Cyndi Lauper
“Jump” – Van Halen
“Invisible Touch” – Genesis
“Video Killed the Radio Star” – The Buggles
“It’s the End of the World” – R.E.M.
“Walk Like an Egyptian” – The Bangles
“Ray of Light” – Madonna
“Spice Up Your Life” – Spice Girls
“Alright” – Supergrass
“Clearest Blue” – CHVRCHES

Compiled by Kallie Stahl and Michelle Callaghan. Kallie is the graduate assistant for scholarly outreach. She is currently pursuing her MA in Communication at Villanova University. Article by Michelle Callaghan, graduate assistant on the Communication and Service Promotion team. She is currently pursuing her MA in English at Villanova University.



Last Modified: March 31, 2016

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