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125krisallenAMERICAN IDOL winner KRIS ALLEN is no stranger to Holiday music (his WAITING FOR CHRISTMAS EP was released last year), and he's also no stranger to doing good (having had a history of philanthropy over the past several years). For 2013, he's released a new recording of "I'll Be Home for Christmas," and while it's available as a FREE DOWNLOAD, 100% of any "tips" donated via Noisetrade will go to benefit World Vision's aid efforts in the Philippines following the devastation of Typhoon Haiyan.

125meyouherME YOU & HER is Hannah Rand, Alaina Stacey and Olivia Harris - a trio of Chicago-based performers that started playing music together three years ago, while still in high school. Last year, they recorded a Holiday EP, and their rendition of "We Wish You A Merry Christmas" became an anthem for a promotional effort for the Greater Chicago Food Depository - after the girls learned that 1 in 5 children in Chicago don't know where their next meal will come from. For 2013, they've made the entire 7-song record available as a FREE DOWNLOAD - but if you're inclined to leave them "a tip" through Noisetrade, they will donate 100% of it to the Greater Chicago Food Depository. I did, and I gave the suggested amount of $6 to support their great efforts. Grab A LIL' MORE CHRISTMAS (and watch the making-of) below...

125pasteIf you're getting the Xmas decorations put on this Thanksgiving/Black Friday weekend, there's a solid chance you'll be spinning some holiday tunes, and right now I'm highlighting a FREE DOWNLOAD of 14 tracks assembled by the folks at Paste Magazine. Their 2013 Holiday Sampler was just released and can be downloaded via the Noisetrade widget below. While these songs by Surfjan Stevens, Nick Lowe, Bright Eyes, Otis Redding, Good Old War and more can be yours for free, any money you'd like to "give as a tip" will be donated to Charity: Water to aid in their mission of bringing clean, safe water to those who need it.

125erasureI've got a couple ERASURE CDs in the archives here at Rock Father HQ, and with the release of their new holiday album, SNOW GLOBE (out this week), I'm about to go down the rabbit hole and start exploring the works of Andy Bell and Vince Clarke once more. Then I'll probably end up opening that whole "80s" gateway again, and find myself immersed in that expansive 80s Pop Box Set I bought in the mid-2000s. But I digress, SNOW GLOBE is a fun new record, and one I'm featuring here on The Rock Father as a part of my ongoing 2013 Holiday coverage. Stream the entire album below to hear ERASURE mix-up some original seasonal songs, and some synth'd up versions of some old classics...

125 badreligionIt's been an exceptionally light year when it comes to new Holiday Music. That said, 2013 has made my annual quest for new Holiday songs that rock very difficult. Answering the call this year are none other than punk rock legends, BAD RELIGION. On their unlikely album, CHRISTMAS SONGS (out now on Epitaph Records), the band reworks eight Christmas classics, and then throws in the Andy Wallace mix of their "American Jesus" as an added stocking stuffer. Stream the entire album below, right here on The Rock Father...

mitchellcoverFor 2013, Smithsonian Folkways has issued their first Holiday album in more than a decade with the release of THE SOUNDING JOY, the new album from ELIZABETH MITCHELL AND FRIENDS. The 24-track collection is a spirited set of carols drawn from Ruth Crawford Seeger's 1953 songbook, AMERICAN FOLK SONGS FOR CHRISTMAS, some of which appeared on the 1957 Seeger Sisters album of the same name (originally issued by Scholastic, since reissued by Smithsonian Folkways). To celebrate the season, you can get a FREE DOWNLOAD of "Children, Go Where I Send Thee" via this link (right-click and save).

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